19 Dec What is Product Marketing? All you need to know
What is Product Marketing? All you need to know
As defined by numerous sources, product marketing is the process of introducing a product to the market and ensuring its overall success. Despite the benefits of separating this function and applying product marketing tactics and techniques, many companies still have questions surrounding this topic.
In this article we will cover;
- What are the differences between traditional marketing and product marketing?
- What are the differences between Product Management and Product Marketing?
- Why is product marketing important?
- What do Product marketers do?
- Product marketing in practice
What are the differences between traditional marketing and product marketing?
There is a lot of debate around the differences between traditional or conventional marketing and Product marketing. What’s really different? Let’s talk about traditional marketing and Product marketing separately, then compare and see what’s specific to each.
Traditional marketing as we know it
Marketing is the function that is responsible for the growth and development of the brand as a whole, including the strategy, market research, raising awareness, building and communicating the message, promotions, launching campaigns, evaluating the results, and improving the strategy if necessary.
Product marketing is a critical aspect of conventional marketing that focuses on introducing products to the market and applying brand-specific tools and techniques to drive adoption and promote customer loyalty.
It is a strategic function that is designed to retain existing customers, ensure their satisfaction, and drive long-term product success. As such, product marketing is an integral part of any comprehensive marketing strategy, and its effective implementation is crucial to the overall success of a product.
The core pillars for Product Marketing as a function are;
- Identifying, knowing, understanding, and “feeling” the customer
- Effective positioning of the product
- Building targeted messaging and monitoring the best channels for communication
- Preparing detailed launch plans and supporting sales with insights and materials
- Clearly defining the metrics and KPIs to measure the product marketing activities
- Constant measuring of product success and improvements to the strategy for the long term success
- First of all, product marketing is a part of marketing.
- General (conventional or traditional) marketing is usually more focused on driving demand and product marketing is more focused on marketing ensuring adoption and long-term customer happiness.
- Marketing puts more effort into generating high-quality leads and helps in driving sales, and product marketing is addressing the pain points of the customer communicating the solutions via messaging and effective positioning of the product.
What are the differences between Product Management and Product Marketing?
Product management and Product marketing may overlap in a lot of ways, but there are key specifics that make those two functions/roles very different.
Product management is focused on the creation and definition of new products and features, and Product Marketing works on bringing this product and its features to the market.
Product Marketing Lifecycle
Why is product marketing important?
Product marketing is an essential component of any business strategy, with a primary focus on delivering the strategies and execution plans necessary to achieve long-term success. The primary reason for its importance is that without happy customers, business growth is impossible over the long term.
Product marketing involves bringing products to market, whether they are new, rebranded, or targeted to a different audience. The strategy and execution approach are critical to transitioning customers to the adoption phase, where they decide whether or not to try a product. The stronger and more fine-tuned the product marketing strategy, the smoother the transition to the adoption phase.
While some companies may distribute product marketing tasks between product management and marketing teams, this is often less effective for long-term success and business growth. Product marketing plays a significant role in working with customers, ensuring satisfaction, and gathering insights to fine-tune strategies for retaining customers, ensuring their happiness, and promoting loyalty to the product.
To build a great strategy, it is necessary to have a deep understanding of the target audience, existing customers, competitors, and the overall market. These are the core responsibilities of product marketers, and it’s vital to consider this function or position for your product and company.
By incorporating effective product marketing strategies, you can achieve long-term success, drive growth, and ensure customer satisfaction.
What do Product marketers do?
As we have already discussed here, product marketing is the function responsible for creating marketing strategies that drive business growth.
And although it seems pretty straightforward when we mention building the strategy, this function may vary a lot depending on the type and development stage of the company, as well as the product itself, even within the same company that has multiple products.
However, there are a few points that are common for most product marketers.
In a nutshell, the great product manager should be able to understand the customers and their needs, build a strong strategy and always keep an eye on improvement possibilities, position the product effectively, build the messaging, create launch plans, as well as support the team which is responsible for the execution of that launch.
Product Marketer’s core responsibilities include;
- To ensure that the product (new features of existing product) is positioned on the market in accordance with the overall Product strategy
- Test and ensure that the product fully covers (even better if it exceeds) targeted customers expectations
- Provide sales and marketing teams all the information and materials they need for their processes
- Ongoing product evolution and adaptation strategies to the market and target customer’s needs
Deliverables usually include;
- Personas identified within each segment and target audience
- Research and analysis on positioning, packaging, and messaging
- Effective positioning techniques, packaging directions (including materials), and messaging built based on the insights of analysis
- Ongoing evaluation of the market and how the product fits in, sharing the insights with sales and marketing
- Detailed insights to support action plans for all the aspects of marketing, promotion activities, and sales
There are a few nuances to the Product Marketer’s role
The role of product marketing comprises both strategic and tactical elements that are essential for long-term business success. The strategic component involves defining the target audience, positioning the product, and evaluating its unique selling proposition. This requires a deep understanding of the niche your product fills and the needs of your current customers.
On the tactical side, product marketers must identify opportunities for the product, identify and target the right customers, and address their pain points. This involves navigating the sales process and developing effective marketing techniques to promote adoption.
In addition to these responsibilities, product marketers must also engage with customers to gather insights and ensure their satisfaction. They work closely with sales teams to empower them to achieve their goals and continuously refine the product marketing strategy to increase customer loyalty.
Overall, a skilled product marketer plays a critical role in creating a successful business strategy. They are responsible for understanding the market, identifying opportunities, and communicating the value of the product to customers. By providing strategic and tactical guidance, they enable businesses to achieve long-term growth and success.
Product marketing in practice
When it comes to real-world product marketing, the key is to maintain messaging that remains solution-focused and customer-centric. Hubspot and MailChimp serve as prime examples of focused messaging within highly competitive markets such as CRM and email marketing.
HubSpot’s messaging centers on growth opportunities, highlighting a better way to scale efficiently while keeping things organized. MailChimp’s messaging emphasizes the importance of creating aesthetically pleasing, branded emails that convey professionalism and credibility.
Asana, a project management application, emphasizes its messaging on remote team coordination issues that are prevalent in today’s work environment, with a message that reads “Keep your team coordinated, wherever you are”.
Professional product marketing requires experience, skill, and talent to translate product features into customer benefits. Despite the effort required, it is crucial for the success and growth of a product.