In putting together my last post about the marketing value chain I found some great resources by the folks over at Pragmatic Marketing. I have not used their services but am impressed with the depth of content about product marketing on their website. I particularly like their 21 pragmatic rules of marketing and will definitely apply them as we work on our user experience (UX) and sales tools.
Here's the list.
- If product management doesn't do its job, the other departments will fill the void.
- An outside-in approach increases the likelihood of product success.
- Time spent on the strategic reduces time wasted on the tactical. [this relates to the expression "if you don't know where you want to go any road will take you there"]
- The building is full of product experts. Your company needs market experts. [closely tied to #8 -- product managers must get out in the field and regularly interact with sales people and clients to truly understand their challenges and unmet needs]
- Only build solutions for problems that are urgent, pervasive and the market will pay to solve.
- Your opinion, although interesting is irrelevant. [everyone brings bias, and it increases the higher you go up the executive ranks. You need data because data trumps opinion]
- Don't expect your sales channel to conduct win/loss analysis. [and if they do, all losses will be due to missing product features but wins will be due to their skill as a salesperson]
- The answer to most of your questions is not in the building. [again, get out an visit customers at least once a month and be sure to "pretotype" - more on that in my next post]
- Be able to articulate your distinctive competence. [if you can't do this succinctly and eloquently then you shouldn't be a product manager]
- Find market segments that value your distinctive competence.
- Align your distribution strategy with personas and their problems.
- Every "product" needs product management and a business plan. [and IMHO it needs UX too]
- In the absence of market facts, he who builds the product wins.
- With positioning, the focus is on what you can do for the buyers.
- Positioning should be complete before you start developing.
- You need a positioning document for each buyer persona. [you also need detailed value props and key messages with the top 3 weighted by importance]
- Product management owns the message; marketing communications owns the rest. [this is often a gap and why a rigorous
- Name the product after positioning is finished.
- Map your sales process to the buying process.
- Product management should help sales channels, not individual salespeople.
- Market problems determine what goes in the product. [they saved the best for last - the world is filled with products that failed because they were a solution looking for a problem]