Pragmatic Marketing 2006 Survey


The polls are open! Go to their announcement to take the annual Product Management and Marketing Survey!

Previous Results

Salary Trends

Pragmatic has some good detailed analysis of the data within each year’s survey results. We thought it would be interesting to look at trends over time. Interaction design tells us to focus on personal goals as defining the framework for how someone approaches their job. Surveys aren’t really going to capture those driving goals, or things like utility, job satisfaction, etc. The closest thing we have to a normalizer is looking at product management salary trends over the years of the survey. We also don’t have normalizing data that would show us years of experience, cost of living, or a normalizing stock-option method (like Black – Scholes) to create an “equivalent compensation” analysis across the years.

Within each year’s results, there are some demographic breakdowns by region of the country – but those only help a little. Markets like Silicon Valley, Austin, and Boston will skew the data relative to smaller markets. It would be interesting to see (in future survey results) what the salary data looks like as a scatterplot versus a cost-of-living index for the locale (city, not region) of the respondants.

salary trend data

We saw salary rises immediately following the dot-com bust, followed by some stagnation and deflation in recent years.

If we adjust for inflation we see some less optimistic annual changes in real earnings.

  • 2001: 0.7% Loss in buying power
  • 2002: 3.2% Increase in buying power
  • 2003: 4.0% Increase in buying power
  • 2004: 3.3% Loss in buying power
  • 2005: 4.2% Loss in buying power

Looks even worse. If we show the same graph as above, but in 2000 dollars, we get the following:

inflation chart
This highlights the fairly rapid decay in product manager salaries over the past few years.

Women’s Suffrage

Notice also the unreasonably large gap between blue (female) and maroon (male) overall compensation data.

Next: Go take the 2006 survey.

1 thought on “Pragmatic Marketing 2006 Survey

  1. Why the huge gender gap?

    I meant to write more about that last night, but was just too tired to get to it. The gender gap surprises me. Does anyone know if this is better or worse than other industries, other white collar jobs, or other technical jobs? Maybe, in context, this is a narrow gap. I’m a free-market kinda guy, so I wonder if there’s an underlying reason other than ignorance.

    Please join in the discussion and let us know if you see similar trends in your neck of the woods. Note – you can comment anonymously on Tyner Blain (as long as you aren’t trying to spam us), if you want to share real data without violating confidences or privacy of people.

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