对于创业公司来说, product marketing is an important way to differentiate yourself from the competition and establish your place in the market.
Product marketing doesn’t just refer to a physical item for sale, or even simply a service as a product. When discussing product marketing, we mean the full strategic approach to developing positioning, 消息传递, competitive differentiation, and utilizing knowledge to successfully align your sales and marketing teams.
By carefully planning a product marketing strategy for your startup, you will be better equipped to differentiate yourself from larger competitors. Let’s dive into this step-by-step process of how to craft effective product marketing for your company.
Step 1: ID Your Target Audiences & 买家角色
This is the most important step of product marketing: defining who exactly you are targeting. Start by identifying your target audience. 他们是谁? 他们多大了?? 任何特定的性别? Their careers, or job titles? Interests, hobbies, problems? How can your product help them solve a problem in their lives? This process helps to understand your customer on a deeper level, while also removing the generality of a non-targeted campaign.
With this information, you want to 写一个买家形象. This is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer, drilling down into your target audience to be more specific. Buyer personas represent your target audience and problems your product can solve. You use a buyer persona to explain your target audience to your marketing and sales team, understand your customers better, and set yourself up for success later down the line in the product marketing process.
Step 2: Get to Know Your Market
After you’ve determined your target audience, you can zoom out to the market as a whole. Examining the market means evaluating the business environment/industry your product sits in, 最主要的竞争对手。, 行业趋势, and the needs of the people in your market.
Your market is the larger area that your product serves. By examining your market, you move past your target audience and buyer personas. By moving past your target groups, you consider other groups that may purchase your product/service and the outside forces that might impact your target audiences themselves. The main two components to focus on for startups are your general market and 你的竞争对手.
Knowing your market means understanding the following:
Any changes that might impact the larger target audience/market; these can be political/social/financial, 等.
Any environmental concerns
Forbes recommends that you know your top three competitors at all times. Competitive information can help you to understand how other groups are targeting your target audiences and what 营销策略 they are using to gain/maintain their customer base, whether it’s B2C or B2B. Knowing 你的竞争对手 in and out means knowing:
What consumers 你的竞争对手 are targeting
How competitors are positioning themselves
What are their unique selling products or points
Competitors’ type of marketing and ad strategies
You can find this information by attending events, trade shows, webinars, and using online tools. By understanding information on both your market overall and 你的竞争对手, you are leveraging your startup with information. Information about competitors and your market means you can better inform your startup marketing strategy and plan.
Step 3: Plan Product Positioning and Content
Perhaps the most important part of your product marketing plan is determining how you want your product to appear to your target audience, 你的竞争对手, 和行业. 在理想的情况下, this will take place after the segmenting of your market into a clearly identifiable customer segment you are targeting. Your positioning will determine the creation of your product assets, product name (more on this later), and all marketing/advertising that you do. To plan your positioning, consider the following:
Why did you create your product? Why did you want to offer your service to consumers?
Who will your product benefit? 谁是理想的? Who will gain the most from your service?
What challenges or problems does your product/service solve for users?
是什么让你与众不同?? Is it a feature, an add-on, your employees, or something else?
Where can you reach your audience? 社交媒体? 店内? 明升88?
Does your product meet your target audience’s needs? Are there needs that aren’t being considered or met with your product/service? What change can your service offer to the market?
What are competitors doing for pricing? Can you stand out with value-based pricing, or attribute-based pricing?
By answering these questions, you answer how you should position yourself. 它会通知你 市场营销/公关策略 and ways you can reach new users or even indirect audiences. After planning out your positioning, you can feel confident that your product or service will meet the needs of your target markets. Whether you are offering a new product or working as a tech startup offering cybersecurity services, you can benefit from planning your positioning out in advance of launching.
Planning your positioning can also inform your content marketing -- the message you want to share with your consumers. You want to apply your positioning to your content marketing strategy, to ensure that you are standardizing your marketing strategy and branding continuity. For more information on positioning in tech startups, look at Metis Communication’s guide on tech startup marketing.
Step 4: Go-to-Market Plan
While this step might not be as exciting, it is vital to the success of your startup. Your Go-to-Market plan involves the physical documentation of all aspects of your product or service. The Go-to-Market plan should include the following:
5 mandatory sales tools for all startups
产品数据表 → explains all physical components of your product, or all aspects of your service
“最新消息”数据表 → includes any new information from competitors, 的行业趋势, and new product features you are testing out
销售 & 培训报告 → a training presentation ensures that both existing and new employees share the same message/positioning about your product
Customer-Facing presentation → a presentation about your product for customers means you can control the message surrounding your product
竞争对手Battlecard → a one page summary of 你的竞争对手 and their positioning; helps your employees on all levels know the vital information about 你的竞争对手
确定产品名称 → keep in mind the following:
Consider your target audience, competitors, and positioning before determining your product name
Gender of your target audience? 教育水平? 民族或种族?
Product components like color, 重量, 高度, 产品形状, distinctiveness of your components?
Do you want to focus on your product’s distinctive features, 一个难忘的消息, 或情感诉求?
STP计划 → segmentation of target audience information, targeting plans and reasoning, positioning plans
High level plan with overall goals for your product or service
Define the exact nature of programs you are spending money on for your marketing program, R&D,和生产
With these components, you will have a complete Go-to-Market plan. All this information means you are ensuring that your startup has the documentation to successfully launch your product or service, while keeping the information standardized across your organization.
最后! You can release your product or service to your target audience and buyer personas. There are steps both internally and externally in order to launch a product or service as a startup.
Internally, you need to make sure certain aspects of your product are completed. 这包括:
Know your product’s benefits inside and out
销售 team is trained and clear on product benefits
Positioning and 消息传递 is clear, based on your product benefits
Clear and set buyer personas, ideal customers, and target audiences
Goals for your product and pricing model
How the product is being launched
By having all of this information established and set up for your internal team, you will ensure that your entire company will have control over your positioning, knowledge of your product, and you’ll be ready to face challenges in the market. The main consideration you should take here is the media with which you’ll reach your target audience. What format is the best for reaching that target audience? Where will they interact and engage with your new product or service? Some options to consider are:
A product launch event (for more advice on planning the perfect event, look at our 事件清单)
Exclusive product review from an industry expert
A promotional event or campaign
Product marketing helps startups create a product or service that users will be drawn to. Key steps in product marketing for startups include identifying target audiences and buyer personas, 了解你的市场, 规划定位, creating a Go-to-Market plan, and finally launching your product and/or startup. These steps will assist you in covering all your bases with product marketing, with a product or service, 在你的公司.
Stuck with how to even get started? Download Metis Communication’s template on developing buyer personas to make sure you correctly identify your buyer personas. Metis Communication is happy to help all startups, big or small.
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