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Lessons Learned from Working with Product Marketing

Product marketing can make or break any product’s future. In many high-tech companies, however, product marketing is the translator of product features into process-centric benefits for prospects and customers alike. Generating demand, managing leads, creating awareness, and in short delivering the messaging platform for your product, product marketing is a critical ally.

  • Get on top of lead-generation performance for your products. Marketing may not have this data, but go after it for all product managers. The idea is to start building out what the sales funnel looks like for your products and how many leads are needed at the wide end of the funnel to result in closed sales.
  • Work with marketing to understand the sales funnel for your products. See whether you can create the sales funnel for your products using marketing data, and learn why some leads drop out of the pipeline.
  • Develop a Google AdWords strategy for your products. AdWords is very economical as a lead-generation strategy. Define the specific keywords to include competitors and their products as well. The cost per click can be well under $1 and the leads are finely tuned.
  • Send a constant stream of white papers and information to prospects. This is especially important in emerging markets, where prospects are looking for guidance and insight into what new technologies are working reliably. Prospects want to understand what new technologies mean to them; they don’t want messages slammed at them. Educate and be the trusted advisor in new markets, and you’ll sell more.
  • Use industry analysts often. In certain software segments, IT buyers rely on industry analysts for guidance, and as a result such analysts have insights into what’s being purchased and why. Get industry analysts to visit your company and present competitive updates once every three to six months. Also get their insights into your product roadmap and direction, making sure that a nondisclosure agreement is in place as part of your company’s overall relationship with the analyst.
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