The role of product marketing is to understand and market not just goods and services to customers like me and you, but also stand in the gap for customers, telling companies what the people want.
Any organization that must function effectively must listen to what the people have to say, the people are the business and this is why product marketing is important. They help marketing, sales, and customer success teams succeed by driving product demand and usage.
With that in mind, we prepared this guide to help explain what product marketing is, what a product marketer’s responsibilities are, how to measure product marketing success, and much more.
Product marketing overview
When you see an ad for the iPhone, with its sleek body, elegant design, and classy finish, what comes to mind? Apple has remained at the top of the mobile ranking and has maintained its position by creating a brand that represents elegance and status. You want an iPhone. You may not need it, but you certainly want to be a part of the clique – the one percent. If you get the drill; that is exactly what Apple’s branding wants you to feel.
So, who is responsible for this kind of marketing? Who contributes to creating information that piques consumers’ interest in new and upgraded items, such as Apple’s iPhone 13? Who motivates customers to buy? The phrase ‘product marketers’ summarizes the answer to the preceding questions.
Product marketing aims to understand the market better; what are its demands, what does it need, and whether this product works in this market or not. However, to get answers to these questions, product marketing focuses on the consumers of these products, researching about them, taking the stats and doing the numbers.
Product marketing also entails creating brand positioning, coming up with the brand messaging, establishing competitive differences and ensuring that the sales and marketing teams are on the same page so they can function effectively. This type of strategic marketing focuses on a specific product or product range. Product marketing is, in reality, an integral part of product management as a whole.
What Is a Product Marketing Strategy?
The positioning, price, and promotion of your new product are all guided by your product marketing strategy. It guides you through creating your products and advises you on which new customers and areas to target for launch and marketing. Let’s look at five steps to help you maximize your product marketing strategy.
Before launch, a product marketer’s role is to establish the target market and get to know the potential client. After developing client personas, the product marketer’s task is to put what they’ve learned into practice. A positioning memo or a collection of important messages can be used to accomplish this. With their positioning, product marketers attempt to address the following four questions:
· What is the target market for this product?
· What is the purpose of this product?
· Why should buyers be interested in using it?
· What makes this product stand out from the competition?
Positioning and messaging
The product marketer’s task now is to make sure that everyone in the organization understands the positioning and message that have been produced. If no one is on the same page, positioning is pointless. As a result, product marketers need to gain buy-in and communicate crucial ideas throughout the organization.
This is fundamental to your overall brand positioning, as it allows product marketers to collaborate with other marketing employees to develop a powerful GTM message.
Developing a Launch Strategy
Product marketers are in charge of developing a launch strategy, which often involves teams from all around the company, including traditional marketing, revenue, and support. Most product marketers are judged on demand at the end of the day (new sign-ups, cross-sells, or feature adoption). As a result, developing a solid launch strategy is crucial to a successful launch.
Content Creation for the Launch
Any launch plan’s content is the glue that holds it all together. Product marketers will collaborate with many teams inside a company on launch material. This content includes demo decks, product images, sales materials, blog entries, landing pages, and website updates.
Getting the team ready
Internal communication is equally as essential as external communication for a product introduction. Before a product launch, the product marketer’s role is to ensure that the entire team is prepared and ready to go. This often entails anything from ensuring that the website is ready to go live to ensuring that the support team handles phone inquiries and chats.
For a product marketer, the actual product launch is the turning point. When the rubber strikes the road, consumers begin to pour in.
Finally, you’ll want to assess how successful your launch strategy was. This may be done by keeping track of consumer and internal feedback. Keep track of the launch’s success using important indicators such as adoption, up-sell, and cross-sell.
How to implement product marketing in an organization
There are four key steps to follow when it comes to product marketing.
- Identifying the target market:
The company needs to discover and contact a significant percentage of its customers, or at the very least a significant fraction of its most valuable customers, directly. It’s vital to get to know your customers as thoroughly as possible. Not only should the information include their names and identifiable features, but also their habits, tastes, and so on. A snapshot of data is not enough; you need more. At every point of contact, in every medium utilized, at every location, and across every division, the company should be able to recognize the consumer.
- Differentiating consumers
Now it’s time to separate the wolf from the sheep. There are two ways in which customers differ. They have various demands and represent varying amounts of value to the company. Once the demands and value of each client have been established, the company’s behavior may be tailored to match the customer’s value and needs.
- Engaging with consumers
When interacting with customers, it is vital to be cost-effective and successful. Directing customer interaction reduces the cost of the company. It would be more cost-effective to provide information over the web than run a contact center where calls have to be attended to, which translates to staff being hired and paid.
By sending appropriate and timely communications to customers, a company can improve the effectiveness of its customer contact activities. Also, set up automated responses that help you gather information. This data should then be collected and stored for as long as possible. Why? Because that data could be useful soon and aid the marketing team in making better products.
- Creating and producing a unique product:
With the information gathered and the research done, the team can start creating a new product that can meet the customer’s needs. Armed with data and information, the marketing team is not going in blind, reducing costs.
For example, if a company wants to sell a service to a family, the intel collected says that men are often not at home to watch advertisements on TV, but their wives are during that time of the day. Then the marketing team can tailor their adverts to women and the family. These women will then tell their husbands what they saw on TV that afternoon. Therefore, converting ads to sales.
How to measure the impact of product marketing
The key performance indicators for product marketing will vary based on the composition of your team. For example, if enablement managers work outside of product marketing, their internal KPIs will not be linked to product marketing performance.
So, how should product marketers evaluate their effectiveness in general? Databox polled product marketers to determine which KPIs were most important to them. According to the poll, product marketers are continually focused on the customer:
“Amongst the group of experts we surveyed, we found that product marketing’s main goal is sign-ups. Almost as frequently mentioned were active product usage and paid activations. Churn reduction and upgrades were mentioned quite a bit less frequently as primary goals. So, it seems that product marketing is mostly focused on getting users in the door and getting them to purchase and use the product.”
In addition to this, the team identified thirteen KPIs product marketers should focus on:
· Frequency of high-value actions
· Sales close rate
· Customer lifetime value
· Net Promoter Score
· Customer sentiment
· Market share
· Product description clarity
· Product usage
· Number of contacts
· Assisted conversions
· Qualified leads
· Cost of each acquisition
You can find more information on these KPIs here.
Product marketing still plays a vital role in the extremely competitive technology business. We hope that this article has helped clarify what current product marketing entails. Through product marketing, the consumer and the market should be well understood. Product marketers are in charge of positioning, messaging, customer feedback, and the complete go-to-market plan for a product before launch.