Latest Article: Are PRDs Dead? »

Aventi Group


What Drives Excellence in Product Marketing?

By sridhar ramanathan
Posted on March 2014 in Product Marketing

We all know how easy it is to measure sales effectiveness – quota attainment.  The same goes for demand generation – a pipeline of qualified leads or sales opportunities that’s three to five times quota.  But what about Product Marketing Management (PMM)?  One could argue that revenue growth is the singular metric but that would be misleading as many factors contribute to revenue growth.  So how do you know whether Product Marketing is doing a great job?  One of the quickest ways is to ask sales folks who will tell you right away about the quality of PMM output that helps them sell.  I’ll write a separate blog post about how PMM can do a better job in serving their #1 customer – sales.

So first let’s look at the factors that drive excellence.  We get asked a lot about measuring PMM effectiveness so I’ve devised a simple 10-question survey to help you see how your organization is performing on key factors driving excellence.  Take this survey now before reading on.

If you took the survey you got a good sense of how a Chief Marketing Officer or VP/GM would measure success.

    Value Propositions

How compelling are the value propositions for your products?  You know this from the sales team’s anecdotal feedback on what resonates with customers.  You know it when the inside sales, marcom, PR, demand gen, and field marketing teams tell you that the value propositions truly resonate with prospective customers, analysts, and press.

    Product Marketing Process

You know you have a good process when a major product launch has written goals and objectives, launch deliverables, owners, due dates, resources committed, and agility to handle dynamic changes.  You know it’s in place if you have a budget for marketing your specific product along with a way to calculate the return on investment for marketing tactics.  There’s good separation and collaboration between your product management and product marketing leaders.

    Product Marketing Creativity

How creative is your product marketing execution?  For example, how far do you stray from the usual tactics of email blasts, webinars, search marketing, events, and social media posting?  Have you incorporated gamification and new ways to engage and nurture prospects?

    Product Knowledge

How much “foot traffic” do your Product Marketing folks have in their cubicle when it comes to sales reps wanting help on an RFP, analysts who may seek your reaction to a competitor’s announcement, and ability to deliver electrifying product demonstrations before cynical customer audiences.

    Market Knowledge

How deeply knowledgeable and current is your product marketing staff when it comes to competitors, customer needs, market trends, opinion influencers, “street” pricing?

    Go-To-Market Planning Skills

Do you have a Go-to-Market plan that is kept current at least on an annual basis but better if quarterly.  Complete knowledge of marketing elements enables the PMM to effectively pursue revenue. Promotion strategies, competitive differentiation, value propositions, channel sales strategies, pricing, sales distribution, packaging and market analysis all contribute to the overall plan for a successful business.

    Product Influence

The best product marketers lead change or make things happen with peers instead of just reacting to everyone else’s requests.  Is product marketing a “deliverable while you wait” service (datasheets, solution brief, decks) or has it evolved to a source of strategic insight for product roadmap, channel strategy, and pricing?

    Outbound Marketing

Do you have a plan for the year complete with calendar, metrics, resources lined up to execute a variety of tactics include online marketing, lead generation campaigns, advertising, social media, etc.

    Partner Marketing

What is your strategy for channel marketing? Effective PMM includes managing training, enabling sales, using promotions for recruitment of new partners, and engaging channel partners in productivity.


How much does product marketing bring to the table in setting pricing based on competitive benchmarks, financial analyses, market share figures, price elasticity, and channel conflict management?

See how you might take your product marketing game to a higher level of performance, please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) to setup a discovery session with one of our executives.