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Product Management: Site & Situation


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The state of product management circa 2009.

Published in: Business, Technology
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Product Management: Site & Situation

  1. 1. Product Management The Site and Situation for Technology Marketers @spatially
  2. 2. <<<<<<product: site & situation A geographic term. Site refers to the advantages or disadvantages of a specific location for certain kinds of activities. Situation refers to the advantages or disadvantages of a site in relation to other locations and activities. example: A city that is conveniently located in relation to major infrastructure may be said to have an advantageous situation over one with less. Product managers and their products’ site and situation constantly changes throughout the lifecycle.
  3. 3. personas: mileage may vary Most marketers apply their personal biases to initiatives. These biases are created through experiences - personal and professional. Whether a bias is earned from lessons learned or a personal “style” element - it often manifests in the types of channels used, the tactics used and which of the 4 P’s is central to the product.
  4. 4. business Laggard Markets •I am continuously looking for ways Martha Director, to increase EBITDA even as my Product Marketing customer count drops Customer Centric •We really need to build this for the Barney Sr. Product Manager customers – after all they want it. Portfolio Focused •No single product can really solve Sabrina a problem and customers don’t buy Solution Marketer products 5 5
  5. 5. I want to have a say. I want to buy things on my schedule, not yours. I don't want to do business with idiots. I want to help shape things that I'll find useful. @ccarfi
  6. 6. technical Kool-Aid Markets Jess •If we went to Ruby it would be so Director, much easier. More features - faster! Product Delivery Big Company •If we can manage the backlog and Kristi schedule it will be alright. Product Owner Industry Focus Kai •I’m pretty sure it’s about repeatable Product problems and brand visibility… Evangelist 7 7
  7. 7. when you write, start with your buyers, not with your product. • Don’t just send press releases when “big news” is happening; find good reasons to send them all the time. • Drive people into the sales process with press releases.
  8. 8. brand = product = brand = product = brand = product = brand = product = brand = product = brand = product =
  9. 9. The Agrarian Steady as She Goes • “If only we could get a new UI, we could take this to Martha another market” • “How about a services offering for Z-OS Director, Modernization?” Product • “Why do the people still use the green screen?” Marketing Bio: Martha is a seasoned PM who has found the product equivalent of an ATM machine and is essentially on auto-pilot. She likes concerts on the river, wine & cheese events and is not a big fan of excel. Product performance is key. Never read a blog or at least that she knows of. Education: Liberal Arts Bachelors and every continuing ed certificate an employer would fund. Strategy: 1 major release a year prior to maintenance renewals, 1 up sell add-on every 18 months and a minor release here and there just to tell folks about. Functional Ownership: Product Group P&L – effectively the product level CEO. Strengths – Excels in waterfall development and process HEAVY launch methodology. Weakness – Can’t spell emerging technologies 11
  10. 10. Low price is a great way to sell a commodity. That’s not marketing though, that’s efficiency
  11. 11. Throw away all the excuses. Here’s where we tie in the pirate ships. Pirates didn’t give a rat’s ass what their ship looked like, or even whether it was their ship in the first place. They took whatever floated and could carry cannons and men, and they lobbed themselves at targets. It was messy. It was ugly. It was warfare, but they weren’t ones to fret or struggle with their infrastructure. What defined a pirate ship? That the pirates were aboard it. That’s about it.
  12. 12. The Advocate Everything will be OK •“I remember from school that the Barney customer is always right” Sr. Product •“That project management course Manager said “be the process”” •“Let’s meet weekly to ensure we are in synch– OK?” Bio: Barney hasn’t met a customer he didn’t like. With management gigs in food service, technical support and corporate projects his skills focus him on managing expectations of stakeholders. Product Management is one big “manage to agreement” initiative for Barney. Has never blogged about anything which didn’t involve customer support or high light another functional group. Education: Associates Degree in Business and a Technical Degree from University of Phoenix. Strategy: Happy customers are good customers. Happy customers refer their friends. Cross- functional process design and sign off critical – continuous improvement of processes and controls a key value driver. Functional Ownership: Single product P&L, incented on corporate goals and activity oriented goals like on time releases. Strengths – Works well with others and a trusted team member. Everything is rainbows and unicorns. Weakness – Can’t possibly believe folks don’t have best interests in mind with their actions.
  13. 13. My job is a decision-making job. And as a result, I make a lot of decisions.
  14. 14. The Chef • “Customer problems require a more Stuff for Markets robust ala carte section” Sabrina • “We have a bucket of stuff for the Strategic, market, all they have to do is pick what Solution they need now” Marketing • “Tell them the whole story every time, the whole toolset is the differentiator” Bio: Sabrina has done project management work in manufacturing, was a solution consultant at a software shop and had a MARCOM gig a couple of times. Prefers getting out on sales call to tell the story and ensure it is being told right. Never blogs, ideas too big for text – graphic artist required. Has never actually used any of the products. Education: BS, Public Administration and MBA from Troy University Executive Program. Strategy: If we build it they will come. Truly believes all the teams are scurrying to code to the PowerPoint's she makes and continuous development of forward looking solution slides. Functional Ownership: P&L of the “Solution Portfolio”, no direct interaction with delivery, no direct development resources and she believes she is basically already the CEO. Strengths – Mad PowerPoint skills and ability to spin anomalies into market proof points. Weakness – Lack of market and delivery connectedness due to corner case solutioning model. 18
  15. 15. @sjohnson717 It is easier to find products for people you know, than it is to find people for products you know.
  16. 16. The DJ •“First to market features drive market Midlevel Innovator Jess perceptions of leadership” Director, •“Incremental extensions drives Product increased customer loyalty” Delivery •“I’m staying late, but only until 7 and then I’m off to the show!” Bio: Jess is a former developer, financial analyst and Army Corp Engineer. The whole PM gig funds his hobbies, which after all is all we got. In a zen like moment in grad school, he just said “Oh yeah, I can do statistical models like for money – no need for school”. Operational metrics, research and customer acquisition are core care abouts. Rarely blogs, but always links it to music somehow. Education: BA in Electrical Engineering and Children’s Theatre – soundboard. Strategy: Continuous feature delivery until critical mass merits a notification. Know your customer, understand user behaviors and differentiation from competitors. Functional Ownership: Feature delivery and roadmap prioritization. 3rd level customer support, can approve credits and discounts. Strengths – Agile shops with support for pirate coding. Ability to mix stories into product Weakness – The whole monetizing and productizing thing.
  17. 17. Somebody has to do something and it’s incredibly pathetic that it has to be us. @really?
  18. 18. The Landscaper Process Sets us Free •“It’s all about the backlog!” •“Sprint planning is more important Kristi, Product than following up on the email from sales” Owner •“Yeah, I’m pretty sure I’m not suppose to know that kind of stuff” Bio: Kristi is a former business analyst, recent mother and is completely happy and content with what she is doing. Morning Starbucks, occasional long lunches and rigorous reporting, task statusing and management schedule updates make the world go round. She’s pretty sure that carpooling is the right thing to do, but people basically annoy her. Generally friendly with a searing wit. Blogs frequently, but not on company blog. Education: PhD, Biology – the school is unimportant, that’s Dr. Kristi Sorensen Strategy: Hit the schedule, meet some customers and increase analyst visibility. Functional Ownership: Implied P&L ownership, but no ability to actually influence . Organizational readiness is true role. Strengths – Killer checklist management and has actually used the product. 24 Weakness – No real interest in anything more than keeping things tidy.
  19. 19. A common request I hear is for a product launch checklist. Checklists work great for chores. Make your bed. Brush your teeth. Take the @launchclinic garbage out. Not so much for product launches.
  20. 20. Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth. @JFK
  21. 21. The Analyst • “I’m pretty sure if you make that packaging Kai change you can make an extra $2M/yr” Product • “The arrows are always more interesting Evangelist than the boxes in a flow chart.” • “Know your competitors and your customers” 28 Bio: Kai has traveled a good deal, worked in numerous industries – mainly just a good listener and thinker. Never found technology that difficult – loves excel , understands the importance of telling stories and never has a problem working late as long as the project has some chance of success. Prefers data over people, sales over development, finance over support. Education: 8 undergrad institutions in 3 countries, degree from Middle Tennessee in General Studies after 11 years. Strategy: Listen to smarter people, put in a yeoman’s effort and pitch in on anything he can add value on. Real big on doing what he said he was going to do and I told you so. Functional Ownership: No formal product ownership, works big deals, deals with super angry customers and is sales preferred special call person. Also special project boy. Strengths – Listening to sales, customers and prospects and simplifying the problem and story. Weakness – Unwilling to stop train wrecks if already forecasted and communicated as a probable 28 outcome.
  22. 22. There is no correlation between your good idea and how likely your organization will be to embrace it. @sethgodin – he doesn’t use twitter tho
  23. 23. products and markets have lifecycles distinct people? distinct personas? balance
  24. 24. credits… http://socialcustomer.typepad.c om/the_social_customer_manif /3286355610/ sizes/l/ /2004/10/the_social_cust.html …thanks photos/vaxzine/1785 792790/ om/photos/vaxzin 84685/sizes/o/ e/172651123/size 674407074/sizes/o/ s/m/ om/photos/iabcse e/2114392822/sizes/l/ attle/3333985733/ sizes/o/ m/photos/acmephot o/513185021/sizes/ 5098408/ o/ /photos/dgans/3132 orateSite/index.php?option=com_content&t 75400/sizes/o/ m/photos/inbound ask=view&id=21&Itemid= marketing/284399 1585/sizes/l/
  25. 25. Product Management The Site and Situation for Technology Marketers @spatially