Member Rick Martig Speaks: Get a Product Marketing VP
The case at hand was brought by a fellow Alliance member whose company’s product management efforts were stuck in research and needed to jumpstart marketing in a way that tied its R&D with market needs.
If you were in this situation, what would you do?
"Product marketing is critical. Engineers will build something new and snazzy, but they don’t necessarily know whether there is a market need for it,” says Rick Martig.
“I can see that your firm’s product management efforts are withering from too many years in research mode, and that marketing is taking place too far into the sales process. There needs to be links between your customer needs, sales, marketing and engineering.
“Product marketing is critical. Engineers will build something new and snazzy, but they don’t necessarily know whether there is a market need for it. If I were in your shoes, I would find a great VP of product marketing to lead the way.
“However, I would keep product management separate from product marketing. Product management is responsible for driving new products through the different development stages and getting the product to the market on time. For example, If I had two divisions with divergent product lines, I would have one VP of product management at the corporate level to create one process, but two different product management directors for each group responsible for product definition, pricing managing product to market process, go to market programs with sales and promotional efforts working with marketing.
“These steps would give me a better chance to ‘un-stick’ product management and jumpstart product marketing, so I know that I am deliberately and accurately driving my firm’s R&D efforts to what the market really needs."