The 6 Most Important Go-To-Market Motions for B2B SaaS

Having a well-defined go-to-market (GTM) strategy is crucial for success. As companies strive to create more revenue, understanding and leveraging the right GTM motions can make all the difference. In this article, I will explore the six most important GTM motions for B2B SaaS companies.

What is a GTM Motion?

Gartner defines go-to-market as, “a plan that details how an organization can engage with customers to convince them to buy their product or service and to gain a competitive advantage.” In essence, GTM motions are business strategies designed to boost sales of the vendor’s product or service.

What are the 6 most important GTM Motions for B2B SaaS?

These are:

  1. Inbound
  2. Outbound
  3. Community Led
  4. Partnerships
  5. Product-Led 
  6. Event-led

These motions aren’t individual strategies; instead, the most thriving companies typically employ a blend of them to enhance their effectiveness.

GTM Partners surveyed go-to-market professionals to see how common each motion is and found the following:

  • Inbound-led: 90%
  • Outbound-led:  86%
  • Partner-led: 66%
  • Community-led: 52%
  • Product-led: 41%
  • Event-led: 38%

Let’s dive into the 6 different GTM motions:

1. Inbound 

Inbound marketing focuses on attracting potential customers through valuable content and experiences.

Some tactics for inbound marketing are:

  • Blogs
  • Webinars
  • SEO 
  • Organic social media on LinkedIn for example

By creating high-quality blog posts, webinars, and social media content, companies can position themselves as thought leaders and build trust with their target audience. 

The biggest drawback of inbound marketing is that it often takes time to rank in Google and come up at exactly the right time in someone’s search.

Example of inbound GTM motion for B2B SaaS

HubSpot is one of the early adopters of inbound marketing. They utilized content to solidify its position as a leading figure in the marketing realm. By providing complimentary tools, ebooks, and webinars, they drew in a diverse audience and transformed them into potential customers.

2. Outbound 

Outbound sales involve proactively reaching out to potential customers through channels like cold calling, email outreach, and LinkedIn messaging. This motion is ideal for companies with a clear understanding of their ideal customer profile (ICP) and a sales team capable of effectively communicating the value proposition. 

This may include the following:

  • Email marketing to cold audiences
  • Direct message outreach through LinkedIn’s InMail system (LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator is a great place to find leads)
  • PPC campaigns, including both search and targeted ads
  • Account-Based Marketing (ABM): targeting a specific number of high-value accounts with personalized marketing campaigns together with sales.

The advantage of outbound strategies is that you proactively reach out to users even if they are not yet looking for you. You can find someone who doesn’t even know they need you, even if they are already a customer of a competitor.

A downside may be that you approach the market too aggressively, which may give you a negative image. Especially with high-ticket B2B SaaS with a relatively small TAM (total addressable market) you want to avoid this.

Example of outbound sales GTM motion for B2B SaaS

In its initial stages,, a platform for sales engagement, employed outbound tactics such as cold emailing and calling to reach out to prospective clients. They utilized Sales Development Representatives (SDRs) to assess leads before transferring them to the sales department.

3. Community-Led Growth

Community-led growth leverages the power of user communities to drive product adoption and growth. By fostering a strong community around their product, companies can encourage user engagement, gather valuable feedback, and create a sense of belonging among their customers. This motion is well-suited for products with a strong user base and a focus on user-generated content.

Examples of community-led growth GTM motion for B2B SaaS 

HubSpot has utilized its community to establish itself as a leading authority in the field of inbound marketing. Through initiatives like providing free course certifications and organizing inbound marketing events, they have strengthened their community presence.

And the collaborative interface design tool Figma has a loyal community. Here, customers are able to access plugins, icons and illustrations but also wireframes and complete design systems.

4. Partnerships

Partnerships involve collaborating with other companies to reach new markets and customers. This can include referral partnerships, technology partnerships, and co-marketing agreements. Partnerships are particularly effective for companies looking to expand their reach and leverage the resources and customer bases of other organizations.

Example of partnerships GTM motion for B2B SaaS

Salesforce has created a vast network of partners, encompassing software integrators and consulting firms, to enhance the functionalities of its platform. This enhances the value of Salesforce’s primary offering and broadens its influence into new markets.

5. Product-Led

Product-led growth (PLG) puts the product at the center of the GTM strategy, allowing users to discover, try, and buy the product on their own. This motion is ideal for companies with a product that provides immediate value and can be easily adopted by users without extensive sales involvement. 

PLG can be effective for low-ticket SaaS companies but it is really hard to achieve.

Examples of product-led growth GTM motion for B2B SaaS

Airtable offers ‘spreadsheets on steroids’ and uses a freemium model where users can go try out the product for free. When you need more features or more tables, you have to move to a paid plan.

Slack uses a freemium model, offering basic features for free while requiring a paid subscription for access to more advanced functionalities. As teams expand and need additional features such as increased storage or integrations, they typically transition to a paid plan.

6. Event-Led 

Event-led growth involves using events, both virtual and in-person, to drive product awareness, lead generation, and customer engagement. This motion is particularly effective for companies looking to connect with potential customers in a more personal setting. Events can include webinars, conferences, user group meetings but also small round table sessions. 

Examples of event-led growth GTM motion 

Apple’s product launch events are great examples of event-led growth. These eagerly awaited events garner significant media attention and consumer enthusiasm, fueling sales and bolstering brand loyalty.

When do you use a specific GTM motion for your B2B SaaS?

It depends on the phase of your SaaS, your ICP and your team size when to use a specific GTM motion. For example, in the startup phase, you usually use one specific GTM motion. A lot of times this will be sales-led outbound.

Once you have a clear understanding of your ICP and your pricing, a SaaS company can use inbound for the lower tier product and a combination of outbound with Account Based Marketing to target larger companies.

After that, you can add another GTM motion like partnerships or a community. 


The six GTM motions discussed in this article offer a range of strategies for B2B SaaS companies to reach their growth goals. By understanding the strengths and weaknesses of each motion and tailoring their approach to their unique business needs, companies can create a GTM strategy that sets them up for long-term success.

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