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259: What Is Product Marketing

In today’s Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about product marketing (the cross-section between sales, marketing and product) and discuss how this business function is defined differently across different organizations. Steli shares his approach to product marketing and how he is ready to step up his game in this department. Tune-in and get insights that will help you determine how to integrate this important function into your organization.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:03 – Today, we are going to talk about Product Marketing 101

00:43 – Send out an email to Steli if you feel that you are the right product marketer for his organization

01:15 – Product marketing has different definitions

02:00 – It’s in a weird position that crosses sales, marketing and product

02:23 – “Product marketing is the art and science, conveying to people what your product can do for them with the goal of engaging, conveying and retaining”

03:04 – Difference between positioning of a company and product

03:11 – Often brand and company positioning is done through marketing while product positioning is done through the product

04:13 – All domains of a business: sales, marketing and product end up suffering if product marketing is neglected

04:46 – Steli has been indirectly marketing products to customers through content marketing

05:46 – Prospects end up reading relevant content and falling in love with the brand

06:08 – Whenever the prospect comes to the market wanting to purchase a CRM, they consider Steli’s organization first

06:31 – Has not been targeting customers who want to purchase a CRM immediately

07:55 – Has built up a strong brand, but has not focused on product positioning

09:19 – Some organizations think of product marketing as a top of funnel function

10:00 – The initial launch is done with the intent of driving traffic and trials

10:20 – Think of increasing adoption rates among existing customers

10:51 – Some people think of product marketing as a function spread across the entire lifecycle—from driving traffic to retention

11:24 – Product marketing can be concentrated on the top of the funnel, end of the funnel or across the entire life cycle

12:00 – While organizations generally research the pre-market launches extensively, there is a need to concentrate on the post-launch metrics

13:00 – Today, product marketing is concentrated more on the product team and less on the marketing; historically, it was otherwise

14:04 – Hiten prefers that product marketing remain a part of the product team which makes it more customer-centric

14:29 – Product marketing team should delve into case studies, take up research and customer development, coordinate with different teams and be involved in updating website assets

16:16 – As companies get larger, product marketing acts as a bridge between different departments

16:56 – Product should be closest to the customers—learn what their needs are

18:30 – Hiten has hired product marketers who ended up becoming part of the marketing team

19:34 – The structure of your organization determines how you approach product marketing

20:15 – While some business functions are very well defined, there are other new positions that are not clearly defined

21:27 – Send out an email to Steli if you feel that you are the right person for this product marketing job

3 Key Points:

Product marketing is the art and science that conveys to people what your product can do for them.

Product marketing can be concentrated on the top of the funnel, end of the funnel or across the entire life cycle

Product marketing is the cross between sales, marketing and product.

Steli Efti:

Hey everybody this is Steli Efti.

Hiten Shah:


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