Product Management vs Product Marketing Activities

Comments Off on Product Management vs Product Marketing Activities

Titles really are a mess. What one company calls a product manager, another calls a product marketing manager. It is best to be aware of this and to focus on the activities required. Also where these people do not exist in an organisation other departments fill the void. So the activities may be performed (poorly) by technical, sales, operations or marketing communications.

Typically the title “product manager” is used to signify people who listen to the market and articulate the market problems in the form of requirements. And the title “product marketing manager” is usually assigned to those who take the resulting product to the market by defining a product marketing strategy.

In Crossing the Chasm, Geoff Moore defines (and recommends) two separate positions:

A Product Manager (PM) listens to the market

PM“A product manager is a member of either the marketing organization or the development organization who is responsible for ensuring that a product gets created, tested, and shipped on schedule and meets specifications. It is a highly internally focused job, bridging the marketing and development organizations, and requiring a high degree of technical competence and project management experience.”

 

A Product Marketing Manager (PMM) talks to the market

PMM“A product marketing manager is always a member of the marketing organization, never of the development group, and is responsible for bringing the product to the marketplace and to the distribution organization… it is a highly externally focused job.”

 

In reality, there is a blurring of activities and the captions used (talking and listening) are used for simplicity, clarity and guidance rather than laws. The activities performed by the roles are as follows:

Product Management Activities

  • Define Market Opportunity,
  • Define User Personas for individual products.
  • Create Product Requirements & Use Scenarios,
  • Analyse Competitive Landscape,
  • Define Product Differentiation & Position Product,
  • Create Business Case, Acquire Funding,
  • Create Product Roadmap, Develop Product,
  • Launch Product, Manage Product Lifecycle.

Product Marketing Management Activities

  • Articulate Product Objectives,
  • Articulate Product detail ( differentiation, positioning, applications, pricing and USP), Understand Market (needs, problems,& segmentation, priority, size, customer profiles and purchase processes),
  • Understand Competition,
  • Build Go to Market plan ( value proposition, sales process, select/create sales channels and objectives, message map, demand generation strategy, promotion strategy, sales guide, sales support & collateral, sales training, pipeline management, metrics, systems, budget, schedule),
  • Execute Plan ( launch event, launch team).
  • Conduct Win/Loss analysis.

 Director, Product Strategy Activities

In organisations where a Director, Product Strategy exists then they may take on more of  the strategic and less tactical activities.

  • Discover and validate market problems (both existing and future customers)
  • Seek new market opportunities by leveraging the company’s distinctive competence
  • Define and size market segments
  • Conduct win/loss analysis
  • Determine the optimum distribution strategy
  • Provide oversight of strategy, technical, and marketing aspects of all products in the portfolio
  • Analyze product profitability and sales success
  • Create and maintain the business plan including pricing
  • Determine buy/build/partner decisions
  • Position the product for all markets and all buyer types
  • Document the typical buying process
  • Approve final marketing and go-to-market plans

Comments are closed.