10 uncommon myths of Product Marketing you should definitely know
Whenever I read an article on the internet that is related to marketing, it always gives me a perception that there is a lot to be learnt in order to get the real essence of product marketing and what it can really do for our business.
The path to successful marketing is often not an easy one, since the whole company relies on your efforts to get worthwhile prospects to the table. There are a plethora of marketing myths that exist, but in this article, we would talk about the most common myths which would probably make you think a little harder.
Myth #1 — Good marketers follow the same set of rules FOREVER
Most marketers believe that if they continue to do things in a certain way, it would yield them the exact results which they had been getting, irrespective of the industry or the product they work for.
However, this isn’t true when there are too many dynamic variables. The industry you work in or the product category you work for currently, might be entirely different from what you had worked in the past and there is no possibility of applying the same set of rules and expect the same results. Rules are meant for schools, but great marketers create new rules when the dynamics change.
Myth #2 — Let’s shoot in all directions
You might have heard marketers say “let’s go ahead and start our marketing everywhere, in 360 degrees, and eventually some of the channels would work for us”.
This is a good strategy, especially when there is no cap on the budget. Most marketing strategies are based on time and money, and this combination plays a vital role. You might have an unlimited budget, but do you really have time to manage and monitor the 360-degree marketing? I doubt. Thus, it is always recommended to start off with fewer marketing channels (especially when you have less people working and limited budget to experiment).
Myth #3 — A/B testing is required only in the initial phase
Marketers believe that A/B testing is required only until the website, banner ads, copy and the design become stable. Once those become stable, A/B testing becomes obsolete.
This isn’t true. Initially, most companies implement A/B testing to find out what performs better and eventually move on to other goals, to drive more conversions for the business. However, what we fail to understand is, A/B testing is an ongoing process, which has the potential to give us continuous improvement in the conversion rate too (provided its done correctly).
Myth #4 — Social media can only be used for LeadGen
For some industries, social media works like a charm when it comes to lead generation, especially in industries which cater to the B2C segment like Retail, eCommerce, Real Estate, etc. What about the B2B segment where social media doesn’t work that well for lead generation?
Most companies in the B2B space work actively to figure out a LeadGen model via social media and what we have discovered is, social media shouldn’t be perceived just as a LeadGen channel, when it can actually do a lot more than that, like building your brand and establishing a loyal customer base for your product. By continuously interacting with the customers, providing them with new insights and ideas on how to scale their business using your product, is what every customer who buys your product wants, and social media is the best way to do that.
Myth #5 — The marketing team has no control over the product
The product management team comes up with features, pricing, market analysis etc. based on which, the marketing team has to function and has no say in that.
However, this isn’t true at all and is just escapism. Initially, it is the product management team that deems the product market fit and then passes on the product to the marketing team to take it to the prospects. However, in the long run, it is the marketers who essentially know what kind of competitors exist in the market, how is the market dynamics changing, what kind of price would make us stand out in the market, what kind of feature sets are required to compete neck to neck with a competitor, what the future of the category looks like and so on. All of these play an important role in how the product will be strategised and enhanced in the future, and marketers have a great knowledge about this, as they are closer to the audience.
Myth #6 — Marketing and sales cannot work together
How many times have your marketing and sales teams fought on topics like the quality of the leads/signups, inadequate actionable prospects from the marketing team to the sales team etc.?
The key to any successful organisation is to have both marketing and sales work together. While healthy fights, arguments and conversations are necessary between sales and marketing, it is always important to note that all of us work towards achieving the goals of the company, i.e. increasing the ROI and making as many companies as possible, to use our product. It is also important for both marketing and sales to understand each other’s perspectives, opinions and then move forward with a common understanding to make the mission successful.
Myth #7 — Marketing is an art, not a science
This is what most people say when they really don’t want to dig into the numbers. Visitor journey, funnel metrics, conversion number don’t lie in marketing.
Just like how strategy is important in marketing, similarly marketers need to be more analytical to make data-driven decisions. Be it SEO, paid campaigns, webinars or getting free trials — every marketing activity needs to be measured. Marketers need to be at the top in knowing what is working and what isn’t working well to make a good, scientific decision.
Myth #8 — Starting “first” or being the “leader” matters
How many times you would have heard that some competitors have pioneered into a certain category, so we couldn’t get to the top?
All of us know that we are in an era where Google wasn’t the first company to build a search engine, or Facebook wasn’t really the first one to have a social networking website. Both of these companies came from behind and are now universally loved by everyone, because of the product and marketing approaches, not because they were the first in the market or because they call themselves as the leaders in their own spaces. However, being the first in the market certainly has its own advantages. On the flip side, not being one is not a showstopper.
Myth #9 — You don’t really need to know the product to market it
We all are marketers and we know marketing really well. However, we don’t need to know the product deeply to take it to our audience.
This is a common misconception which most marketers have, i.e they need not know the product to be able to market it. Knowing the product is only going to make them better at marketing, helping them to target the audience correctly. This would also help them to know the current pain points of the audience and arrive at a better solution for the same.
Myth #10 — Prospect journey doesn’t matter much for marketers
“It doesn’t matter much as to what a prospect does when they come to my website. All we care about is, are they signing up for a free trial.”
For marketers, the number of people taking up free trials (or) conversions really matters a lot and which is why most often the prospect journey goes unnoticed.
However, what’s more important is, if we are able to figure out a good journey for prospects, then we can incorporate a lot more changes so that the current conversion rate would increase by leaps and bounds, without investing more money.
Not to disagree that, this requires dedicated effort in knowing what the users want, how things could be more simplified, how to provide information in the correct flow, etc.
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