Hi! I’m Mirze Rey, and I’m a Go-to-Market Manager for Microsoft’s cyber security business. Today, I’m delighted to share how you can achieve GTM success through consumer and market insights.

Here’s a taste of what we’ll cover:

  • First, I'll give you my forecasts for the major market trends we'll see this year related to taking products to market.
  • Second, I'll outline some challenges associated with these trends that customer and market research can help you overcome. 
  • And third, I'll leave you with three tried-and-tested tips for leveraging customer and market insights to ensure a successful go-to-market motion.

Fearless forecasts for 2024

Let's dive into my fearless forecasts! 

First up, it'll be another year where companies and individuals look to do more with fewer resources. 

In 2023, this trend weighed heavily on customers' minds amid budget cuts, layoffs, high inflation, hiring freezes, and generally unfavorable economic conditions. Companies focused on how they could tackle the same tasks – or even more – with fewer resources. 

Unfortunately - according to the World Economic Forum survey - this outlook seems set to continue, as 56% of chief economists worldwide believe the global economy will keep weakening. Not an ideal situation.

My second fearless forecast is the explosion of content, thanks to generative AI. You've likely seen and even played around with this tech, generating pretty good first drafts of emails, PowerPoint decks, landing pages, and more with just a few prompts. Going forward, as more people get comfortable with AI, we can expect a flood of content competing for customers' attention across marketing channels.

And for forecast number three: we'll see more products and solutions incorporate or highlight their AI capabilities. This is in response to customer expectations, market demands, and competitive pressures. The experts say 2024 could be a watershed moment for generative AI as its capabilities continue to break boundaries.

Tackling the challenges of an evolving market landscape

Given those three big predictions, what are some of the key challenges we'll face in taking products to market?

First, in an era marked by tighter budgets, there will be greater competition for customers' resources. As someone right in the thick of a product launch, I've seen many customers become more averse to trying new tech unless there's a clear, quantifiable cost benefit. As owners of the go-to-market strategy, this presents us with some significant challenges.

If you’re taking a sales-led approach, how can you better equip our sales teams to address the heightened fears, uncertainties, and doubts customers will understandably have, with every purchase under greater scrutiny? And if you're taking a product-led approach, how can you position your product to overcome increased friction in the purchase process?

Second, considering the content explosion, as customers get inundated with content (much of it low-quality), there will likely be more fatigue and increased scrutiny around online content. 

Thanks to generative AI, competitors can even copy entire websites or create content in your tone, driving customers to seek out more authentic, personalized voices. The challenge then is how do we cut through the noise and communicate our value in a way that fosters real authenticity and trust?

Third, we're living in an “AI-plus” world now. Many of us are either launching AI products or competing in categories where AI is a highlighted integrated feature.

If you're launching an AI product, the challenge is driving adoption – ensuring your solution will stick in the market and customers will embrace this new tech opportunity. If you're competing where AI is a factor, the question is how to protect against churn and keep communicating that your solution is still the best fit.

The power of consumer and market research

While there's no silver bullet for any of the challenges I’ve outlined, investing in truly knowing our customers and markets will help us all successfully navigate product launches. 

If your customers have tight budgets, deep customer understanding helps you equip sales to address fears and lower friction. If you’re struggling to thrive amid content saturation, that bedrock of customer insights lets you communicate as a trusted, authentic voice that resonates. And if you’re competing in a sea of AI-driven products, putting customers first ensures adoption, differentiation, and retention.

With that in mind, let me share my top three tips for leveraging customer and market research to drive go-to-market success: