Category Archives: Marketing

Articles related to marketing and product marketing management. Many articles focus on word-of-mouth advertising and the idea-virus.

Market Problem Framing Example

picture frames photo from Jessica Ruscello

As Steven Haines first told me, “strategy first, roadmap second.” There is a step between the two – deciding which problems you will focus on solving with your product. Strategy defines the context for product strategy, and your product roadmap is a planning (and communication) tool for executing your product strategy. Understanding how problems are framed in your market is critical to developing a successful product strategy.

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Important Customers – Comparing Products Part 5

A good product is one that solves valuable market problems.  To be successful in the market, a product needs to solve the problems that the right customers are willing to pay to solve.  To know if those customers are willing to pay, you need to understand how they perceive your product relative to alternative solutions.  If you’re new to the series, head back to the intro article on comparing products, and catch up with this article, where we look at pulling together the information about which customers are important.
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Minimum Market Acceptance

April Dunford just presented Startup Marketing 101 at DemoCamp Toronto.  Great ideas from the ‘marketing and your startup’ point of view.  I’ve often said that product managers and product marketers care about much of the same market data, they just do different things with it.  The idea of minimal feature set came up in April’s presentation – this article talks about product management, agile, and initial market acceptance.

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Personas Make Blue Ocean Strategy Proactive

Blue Ocean Strategy provides an interesting reactive analysis of companies and markets.  Personas are used to understand your customer’s needs.  Combining the two provides powerful proactive insights when positioning your product for market success.

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Measuring Market Concentration (Competition)

Is your market competitive, or concentrated?  What’s the difference, and how can you be objective about it and not just subjective?  The United States government uses a measure called HHI – the Herfindal-Hirschman Index – as an objective measure of how competitive a market is.  They use this measure to determine if a company is operating monopolistically, or to determine if a merger needs to be explored from an anti-trust perspective.  The ask the question: would the merger create an anti-competitive market?

You can use this metric to get insight into how competitive your market is, and to gain a better appreciation for trends in your market.  Read on to review the competitive landscapes and trends for email, search engines, browsers, and internet service providers.

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Viral Product Management


Our previous article looked at the economics of a Freemium business model.  One element that is key to making a strategy that involves “free” work financially is growing your user base.  One way to get that growth is through a word-of-mouth marketing campaign.  This article looks at different elements that characterize or affect the successfulness of a viral product – from a product management perspective.

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Freemium Business Model

Ever scratch your head and wonder why you can use your favorite application for free?  How can a business actually make money (and stay in business) when they offer their product for free?  This article looks at the freemium business model, to see when it makes sense for a company to offer it.  The freemium model is one where the company offers two (or more) versions of a product.  The basic version is free to use.  You have to pay for the premium version.  The goal of this article is to answer the product management question, “Should you create a freemium business model?”

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