What Makes A Great Product Marketing Manager?

Role Overview:

As the saying goes ‘Product Manager (PM)’ listens to the market and ‘Product Marketing Manager (PMM)’ talks to the market. PMM is an outbound role…it’s a highly externally focused job.

PMM is a face for a product-line. He/ She provides support for program strategy, ongoing-sales support for a product-line. PMM is responsible for bringing the product to market and driving adoption of it.

Desired Skills for a Product Marketing Manager:

Top/ Essential skills of the Awesome Product Marketing Manager –

  • Strong communication skills are a must
  • A great story teller with a vision
  • Creativity and expression – Trying new stuff
  • Technical skills along with Business Basics – PMM needs to understand the technical elements of a product in order to communicate how and what benefits they bring to the customer
  • Good Writing ability – Great products with great features are awesome, provided customer understands them
  • Leadership and Teamwork
  • Problem Solving ability – empathize customer’s situation, understand customer’s needs and relate these needs with product capabilities

Key Deliverables of a Product Marketing Manager:

Few example deliverables of PMM are shared here.

  • Personas and Marketing Message – Define Buyer and User personas and determine marketing message. Focus on what customer’s needs and not what you’re selling/ product capabilities
  • Define customer acquisition and customer retention strategy
  • Collaterals – Standard presentation, CxO presentation, Detailed presentations, Info graphs
  • Product Launch Plan – Create/ Maintain a product launch for new products/ new major releases
  • Market Research / Competitive Analysis – Industry research
  • Sales Enablement – Enable sales/ presales, make them comfortable selling your products
  • Sales Tools – Align sales tools to the standard/ typical buying process.
  • Sales Info sheet/ product datasheet – highlight the product features/ benefits/ competition/ USPs
  • VBA/ ROI – Value Based Argumentation/ Return On Investment quantifies the benefit to a customer resulting from product/ service investment
  • Win/ Loss Analysis – helps to win more business by studying past sales deals.
  • Case Study – highlighting Customer and Partner success with our products and solutions
  • Demo, Story building, Videos, story document
  • Sales Battle card – Understand and highlight target customer, market, features, benefits, success stories
  • Pricing Models – Explain the pricing model ; example: Revenue sharing, Transaction based, Register user based
  • Budgetary pricing package – Approx. non-binding customer pricing based on small/ medium/ large enterprise opportunities
  • Reference customer details – Identify product references for industry and customer referrals
  • Blogs – Deliver thought-reading contents via blogs/ events/ eBooks
  • Feedback for roadmap – Although primary focus of PMM is to talk to the market, it’s important to communicate back the feedback from customers/ field to strengthen the roadmap

Finally, keep measuring and fine tuning the effectiveness of product marketing programs

Concluding remarks

A successful Product Marketing Manager is one who enables sales/ presales team to comfortably support customer opportunities. The success of PMM is not just about his/ her skills/ competencies rather a PMM is successful when sales/ presales team is armed/ equipped/ enabled with the knowledge and tools they need to be successful to carry out sales independently.

Here is some good news to share, the ‘future book’ is here. I will be launching this book by Oct ’21.

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