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The product marketing paradox
What is product marketing? Well, it kind of depends on who you ask and what the organization needs done. It’s a highly strategic role that requires tight alignment with product, sales, customer success, and the executive team.
At a high level, a product marketer (PMM) is responsible for developing the strategy and tactics necessary to promote a software product effectively. They focus on understanding a company’s ideal customer profile(s) and personas, developing a compelling value proposition, and creating messaging that resonates with potential customers.
An effective product marketer is able to work cross functionally while deeply understanding the worlds of both internal and external stakeholders. One minute you might be asked to help with website messaging and copywriting, and the other minute you're producing a 1-pager for your sales team.
Given their wide array of responsibilities, product marketers are often misunderstood and not set up for success. Executive teams must work closely with product marketing, together with all the relevant department heads, to set the proper expectations and define what success looks like.
Here are some of the key responsibilities of a product marketer at a software company:
Develop a Deep Understanding of the Market
One of the critical tasks of a product marketer is to develop a deep understanding of the market. This includes understanding the target audience, competitors, industry trends, and customer needs.
By doing so, they can develop a product positioning strategy that highlights the unique value proposition of the software product and sets it apart from the competition.
Create a Compelling Value Proposition
A value proposition is a statement that describes the unique benefits that a product or service offers to the customer. A product marketer is responsible for developing a compelling value proposition that resonates with potential customers.
This includes identifying the key benefits of the software product and communicating them in a clear and concise manner.
Support Sales Enablement
Product marketers work closely with the sales team to provide support in the form of training and collateral. They develop sales enablement materials such as case studies, product demos, competitive compassion docs, and sales presentations to help the sales team close deals.
Create Marketing Messaging
Once the value proposition is established, the product marketer creates messaging that communicates the value proposition to potential customers.
This includes developing marketing materials such as website copy, brochures, and presentations that effectively communicate the benefits of the software product.
Generate Demand for the Product
Generating demand for a software product is a critical responsibility of a product marketer. This includes developing and executing marketing campaigns that drive awareness and interest in the software product.
Marketing campaigns can include email marketing, social media advertising, content marketing, and webinars.
Own the GTM of New Product Launches
Owning the GTM of new product launches includes determining who the new product is for, developing the positioning/messaging, and creating the sales collateral for the new product.
Product marketers are also involved in training the sales team on how to sell the new product and coordinating the marketing campaign for the launch. They play the role of a quarterback, ensuring the right messages are pushed through all marketing channels.
Measuring and Analyzing Results
Product marketers are responsible for measuring the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and analyzing the results. This includes tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) such as website traffic, leads generated, and revenue generated.
By analyzing the results, product marketers can identify what is working and what is not and make adjustments accordingly.
As you can see product marketers have their hands in a variety of areas of a company. It’s critical that they are able to balance projects and prioritize requests that come from the various teams across an organization.
Making product marketing successful is a shared responsibility by all the relevant department heads all the way to the CEO. The more leadership can develop a strategic view on what product marketing owns, the faster your organization will reap the benefits of this dynamic function.