Product marketing is a broad term that refers to the process of bringing a product to the market. It includes deciding the product's positioning, messaging, launch strategy, sales strategy, and customer acquisition. It not only intersects with multiple job functions—sales, product, and marketing—but is equally important for both B2B and B2C companies.
Generating demand for a product is one of the most important functions of product marketing and requires assets that provide marketing value to the right people, aka your target audience. You want to tell them how your product solves this major problem they’re facing through videos, ebooks, and other assets. Videos are an excellent way to generate demand for your product—84% of people say they have been convinced to purchase a product after watching a brand’s video. It’s fairly easy too when you use an editor like InVideo.
Let’s talk about what product marketing is, its importance, and product marketing strategies in detail. Here’s what we'll cover:
- What is Product Marketing
- Importance of Product Marketing
- Difference Between Product and Regular Marketing
- 5 Product Marketing Strategies to Implement for Your Brand
- Product Marketing Best Practices
- Best Product Marketing Examples to Inspire Your Brand Strategy
Product marketing is the bridge between the product and market. It tries to understand the demand of the customers, creating a product based on the customer’s demand, and then positioning the product as a solution. Let’s take a closer look at what a product marketer does to get a better understanding.
Product marketers need to know their target audience and the market they’re selling in well. The reason is because their role starts with positioning the product and its features appropriately. Product marketers research the customers and competitors, create personas, and find a pricing that matches the market. Once the product marketer has these variables figured out, it’s time to communicate the product with the market through content, promotions, and launch.
For instance, you can create a compelling video introducing the product before its launch to give potential customers a preview of what it will look like (and it’s surprisingly simple when you use InVideo templates).
In addition to positioning, product marketers must also relay their knowledge of the market to the sales and marketing team so they’re better equipped to serve the customers.
Once the groundwork is laid for a product, they coordinate with relevant teams for the launch of the product. A product marketer’s role doesn’t end with the product’s launch, though. Once they have completed working on their pre-launch product marketing tactics, they’ll be ready to drive the demand for the product and contribute to the product’s evolution based on feedback throughout the product’s lifecycle. Here’s a great explainer on product marketing that you should watch for a deeper understanding of the subject:
Product marketing as a role was conceived by the SaaS (Software as a Service) industry. In an industry that’s already larger than $110 billion and expected to grow at 27.5% each year between 2021-2028, a product marketer has a significant role to play in positioning the product and differentiating it from several other solutions that are similar.
When you’re competing for market share in a crowded market, positioning of the product and your brand become critical to the product’s success. Here’s why:
1. Understanding the target audience
Suppose you’ve got a product that solves a certain problem. Your team is excited you’ve built something magnificent and you can already see the product becoming a hit given how it solves an actual problem. You launch the product and then find out that not enough people have that problem in the first place.
Now, this is where a product marketer’s role is important. Had you worked with a product marketer to study the market, you wouldn’t have to go through all of that trouble and investment. The product marketer could have also helped you figure out a problem you can solve that has a big enough market.
2. Competitor research
What if a competitor is already popular with your target audience? Even though your product may offer more features, clients want a reliable partner. Why will they want to switch to your product? That’s a question your product marketer can help you find the answer to with competitor research.
Perhaps you can offer better customer support, add industry-specific features to make the product more niche, or offer flexible pricing. When you have the information from competitor research, you’ll be in a better position to determine how you can make your place in the market.
The digital world opens plenty of doors for marketers, including in the context of competitor research. Curious to learn more? Here’s a great video that teaches how to go about competitor research:
3. Creating buyer persona
Creating buyer personas helps target a narrow group of people who may have greater interest in your product. When you run marketing campaigns, focusing them on your buyer personas can typically produce better ROIs then running a generic campaign that addresses everyone.
Unfocused campaigns translate to lower conversion and revenue, and that’s why you need a product marketer. They’ll help find a narrow group (or groups) of people who have problems that your product can specifically address.
You should also focus on developing the product to better suit the needs of your buyer personas rather than everyone in general. Product marketers can help you evolve the product by identifying features and functionalities that your target audience will find valuable, and over time, help you achieve and sustain a greater MRR.
4. Coordinate with product, sales, and marketing
Ensuring that the product, sales, and marketing team are on the same page about the product – its features, lifecycle, demand, and other factors is critical. All teams need a strategy, and having the information about the product can help them create more effective strategies.
For instance, keeping the sales team on the same page as you about the evolution of a product helps them understand where the product is headed. This allows giving the leads a teaser about upcoming features that they may find incredibly valuable, and potentially improve conversions.
Pro tip: For creating teasers or trailers or talking about upcoming features, a great idea is to make videos for your social media platforms. Your teams can use a tool like InVideo to create these videos easily and quickly.
5. Position the product
Positioning the product is central to product marketing and a product marketer helps you achieve that. Product positioning helps to create a narrative around your product, and keep your brand’s marketing and tone consistent so it evokes a certain feeling. Consistency makes your brand more recognizable for your customers.
Your product’s positioning also serves as context for your marketing campaigns and promotional offers. Marketers rely on four questions to nail the product’s positioning:
- Who can the product help?
- What problem does the product solve?
- Why would customers want to use the product?
- Why should customers use your solution?
Product marketing can help you answer these questions and determine your product’s positioning more clearly.
Product marketers share several goals with traditional marketers. However, both have a different approach to marketing. Product marketers take a strategic approach where they analyze variables and keep fine-tuning the strategy. On the other hand, traditional marketers focus more on marketing communications, managing campaigns, and similar things. Essentially, product marketers focus on solving the target audience’s problems, while traditional marketers focus on distribution of marketing assets.
Another difference between product marketing and regular marketing is that regular marketing is limited in scope. Their job is to raise brand awareness, generate MQLs and lead them to the sales team. The sales team takes over beyond this point.
On the other hand, product marketing drives conversions by bringing leads and having them try out the product’s free version. Product marketers don’t just focus on acquisition though. They’re responsible for driving growth at all funnel stages.
Need more help differentiating between the two? Listen to Michael Schipper, Product Marketing Manager at Google:
As a product marketer, you’ll need to rely on multiple strategies to get the best results. From creating educational content to distributing it on various channels, there are countless strategies you can use. We discuss the best ones below.
1. Create compelling product videos
Product videos help give your target audience a sneak peek into what the product will look like, its features, and what problems they can solve for your users. If you’re only introducing your audience to the product, a walkthrough video may be a great idea. Walkthrough videos allow showing the audience where they can find the most frequently used features and how to navigate the interface.
Post launch, you can also create more video assets for educating your audience about the product and how to use it more effectively based on your specific use case. However, don’t focus your videos just on the product. Put emphasis on the problems it solves, the user experience it delivers, and your bigger vision with the product.
Check out this blog on how to make product videos that sell for a deeper understanding of how to go about it.
You should create videos at scale to get your product in front of as many people from your target audience as possible. If you don’t have an in-house video editor, use InVideo. It’s easy, quick, and gives you all the customizability you need for creating stunning videos. For instance, here’s a video where you can simply replace the footage to create an engaging video for your product:
If you can’t think of ideas for creating videos, here are some excellent product video ideas you can look at.
2. Build a social media presence
Social media isn’t just about putting your product out there. It’s also a valuable source of feedback. For instance, if you’re considering a new feature for your product, you could run a poll on social media and get feedback from existing users or potential customers.
You don’t have to be active on every social media platform out there. Instead of spreading yourself thin, only use platforms where you can best engage with your target audience. Twitter and Facebook seem to be the most popular choices among brands, but LinkedIn is also a good platform for some types of B2B products.
ClickUp does an excellent job of engaging its audience on Twitter. Here’s how they constantly try to learn more about their customer’s choices:
Not only does this give you first-hand insight on how your product is helping your customers, but also shows that you care about your customer’s opinions.
Pro tip: When building a social media presence, it is imperative that you spend time and resources creating video content. It has proven to be twice as engaging as non-dynamic content. To create compelling social media videos, you can sign up for a free account on InVideo and make use of hundreds of templates and millions of stock assets.
3. Give loyal customers access to exclusive unreleased features
Loyal customers are your greatest asset. The Pareto principle says that 80% of a company’s revenue comes from 20% of its customers. Those 20% of customers are critical to your long-term success, and their opinion should matter.
When you’re planning to roll out a new add-on feature, give your loyal customers exclusive access to it. Hear what they have to say about it, and if they seem to like it, ask them if they’d be willing to share their experience on social media.
Doing this has two benefits. One, your most loyal customers are likely to buy the add-on feature, provided it offers value, of course. Two, they’ll talk about how they liked the add-on and how they have been using your product for a while and loved the experience with friends, colleagues, and on social media. This can get your new add-on the initial momentum that you’d otherwise need to work very hard for.
You can create videos to promote exclusive offers and unreleased features to your loyal customers via email marketing. Here's an easy-to-edit template you can use to get started:
4. Start content marketing
Product marketing often comes off as salesy. Content marketing gives you the opportunity to focus on building your brand, rather than only selling the product. Both types of marketing have different goals. While product marketing focuses on positioning the product and developing its narrative, content marketing helps bring your audience to your product and possibly get them to try out your tool while providing significant value.
Can the two work in tandem? Absolutely.
In fact, content marketing is one of the most effective tools in a product marketer’s toolkit. Through content marketing, product marketers can target customers based on where they are in the sales funnel. You can create content to educate customers and give them additional context about how your product can solve key problems for them, based on where they are in the buying journey.
Essentially, content marketing can help you nurture leads as they pass through your sales funnel and ultimately hand them over to the product marketers when they’re ready to make a decision. To get started with content marketing for your own brand or business, check out this comprehensive guide we have on the subject.
And if you like learning via video, here’s a guide that explains what it is and how it generates value for your business:
5. Get your pricing right
Now pricing is as much a marketing strategy as it is a sales strategy. Your pricing can be used by the product marketer to draw in customers and generate better leads.
You can price your products based on two factors—the competitor’s price or the value it provides to your customers. Competitor’s price gives you a benchmark. You can compare the product with the competitor’s in terms of features and user experience. This will give you a good idea about whether you should price your product above or below the competitor’s.
On the other hand, if your product is significantly different from the competition, or there’s no competition at all, you can take a value-based approach. You’ll need to estimate the monetary benefits your product offers to customers and come up with a price.
Note that with either approach, you can still tweak your strategy to capture a larger market share. For instance, if you’re using a competitor’s price as a benchmark, you can still offer your product at a lower price during the first few months and get the initial momentum going by going with a break-even pricing strategy.
However for pricing to work as a marketing strategy, you will have to promote it. And creating short videos for social media, as well as video ads is a great way of going about it. Check out these promo video templates on InVideo to get started.
Need more insight on pricing strategies? Check out this video by Dan Lok:
Now that we have our top strategies in place, let’s go ahead and take a look at some of the essential practices that you need to adapt in order to implement these seamlessly.
How do you make your product stand out when you’re competing in a space with many other top-notch marketers? By going the extra mile. To go the extra mile, you first need a starting point, and at least do what other product marketers are doing. As a product marketer, you should follow these best practices to ensure that you’re putting yourself in a position to succeed.
1. Be customer-centric
Product marketers should get a thorough understanding of their customer’s needs, pain points, and desired solutions, along with the overall market. This information serves as the basis for everything that a product marketer does, from identifying new features to evaluating their strategies.
Build your marketing assets with your customers as the focus. Create blogs that help customers get answers quickly, nurture your relationships with your most loyal clients and learn about what problems the industry is trying to solve. The more you keep in touch with your customers, the more insights you’ll have, and the better you’ll be able to serve your customers.
Here’s a great resource that tells you how you can transition into a customer-centric marketer from a product-centric marketer:
Pro tip: Creating videos to educate and engage your customers on social media is an excellent way to make the customers more connected with your brand. Use InVideo to create videos within minutes as you start taking a more customer-centric approach to product marketing.
2. Time the product’s launch well
Timing the launch of a product based on the needs of customers and the market is key to its success. There are several factors to consider before planning your launch.
The first one, though, is that you shouldn’t select a launch date before your product is 100% ready. Doing this could spell trouble because you might have to rush and you might end up less time on quality checks than required. Microsoft faced a similar problem with the Xbox 360 launch. They released a buggy version and ended up with plenty of customer issues to resolve. Here’s a video that talks about the infamous RROD problem if you’re curious:
The second important thing to look at is competitor launches. If your competitor has already scheduled a launch, you don’t want to schedule your launch around the same time. Being a second-mover comes with its benefits too.
For instance, if you can get an understanding of how the market responds to their product. Sure, if there’s a hot market, they’ll use the competitor’s product first, but this also gives customers time to become familiar with a new product, laying the groundwork for better solutions that come along.
The third factor is how eager the customers are for the solution that your product will offer. If the market is too new, customers might not fully understand the value of your product. If it’s already saturated with similar solutions, you’ll end up spending a lot of time and resources in finding your place in the market. Hit that sweet spot, and you’ll maximize revenue growth from the product.
3. Laser-focused messaging
Your product might solve all the right problems and you might have the best-in-industry customer support team, but if you don’t explain the product right, none of the other things offer much value.
Messaging dictates how customers perceive your product. Your messaging should address the exact problems that your product will solve for a prospect. It also serves as a source of information for the marketing, sales, and PR teams, helping them hammer home the product’s messaging.
When all teams are on the same page about the messaging, it creates a powerful brand. It also works as a foundation for creating marketing campaigns and a coherent framework for creating content around.
Pro tip: Creating short educational videos for Instagram Reels and TikTok is a great way of nailing the messaging for your product or service. Consider signing up for a free account on InVideo to create these videos quickly and easily
4. Think out of the box
Now, this one’s a tad difficult. There’s no one way or the right way to think outside the box. It takes experimentation and research to find a unique strategy that will successfully drive your product’s success. When there are multiple products making the same claim, that’s where product marketers must shine through out of the box thinking.
You don’t need to reinvent the wheel. Take inspiration from other marketers and then place those strategies in the context of your product and target audience. Of course, don’t copy the strategies as-is, but use it to get a clearer idea of what could work for your product.
Don’t know where to look for inspiration? We’ve listed some examples of great product marketing in the next section.
We like to show rather than tell. Looking at strategies in action and getting a better understanding of how things play out can help you as you build your go-to-market plan. Following are five brands that positioned their products for success by nailing their messaging.
If you’ve been in marketing for any duration, you know that HubSpot goes heavy on inbound marketing. They create comprehensive guides, tutorials, and other assets that help readers solve a problem.
However, the assets they created earlier weren’t specific. They were general concepts that were applicable to multiple industries. The result? Readers couldn’t tell what HubSpot does.
Rick Burnes became HubSpot’s Product Marketing Director in 2011 and changed this problem for good. Rick took a savvier approach to addressing this problem. His product marketing strategy involved creating content that worked alongside existing content on the HubSpot blog. He created videos, case studies, and compelling product pages to help readers understand what HubSpot does.
Check out the Why Go HubSpot page, for example. It’s a quick, simple explanation of how HubSpot helps customers followed by a button for an explainer video.
More importantly, HubSpot has also heavily invested in marketing their product through videos. This makes sense given the complex nature of the product. Here’s an example of how HubSpot walks interested prospects through its tool:
If you want to create similar videos, but aren’t comfortable with heavy-duty editors, try InVideo. You can also use the InVideo marketing templates for creating engaging marketing videos. Once your video is ready, you can quickly make edits like adding text, transitions, effects, and music. Here’s an example of a template you might use for an app or software product:
HubSpot’s investment in videos and other content has paid off. Not only do people know what HubSpot does, the company has become one of the most popular names on the internet today.
MailChimp’s marketing chops are often noteworthy. Their product marketing team is just as savvy. Let’s talk about how.
Recently, MailChimp transitioned into increasing their offerings. MailChimp is now a comprehensive marketing solution, not just an email marketing platform. The change, as you can imagine, presented several challenges. The product marketer’s share of challenges? Repositioning MailChimp as a fully-loaded marketing tool.
The team started by identifying their target audience—small businesses trying to grow. If you look at MailChimp’s marketing efforts, a significant portion of it is geared towards small-sized businesses that need a marketing tool to support their growth.
The product marketing team created a landing page to focus on small businesses instead of populating it with every MailChimp feature. All of the text on their landing page communicates one thing: MailChimp is an excellent marketing tool for growing small businesses.
Every launch needs to have clear calls to action. MailChimp used two assets for incorporating a CTA: landing page and their announcement blog post.
Other than these two core assets, MailChimp used almost every marketing channel available to market its product—email, PR, digital ads, social media, events, and print ads. Yes, print ads. MailChimp partnered with R/GA to launch the “More Than Mail” campaign and used art to communicate its messaging with its target audience. When a software company uses print ads, you know they’re going all in.
3. Grow and Convert
Grow and Convert is a classic example of repositioning their brand’s narrative. The company wanted to serve high-end clients with bigger marketing budgets, and to achieve that goal, they needed to look like a premium agency.
They started by analyzing their competitors and looked for a gap they could fill in the premium segment. Their research revealed three gaps in the premium category they could swoop in and close.
The first gap? A content marketing agency that focused on lead generation. Second, agencies that promote content. And third, an agency that offered top-notch deliverables for B2B clients.
Grow and Convert has since become one of the most popular content marketing agencies, thanks to its excellent product marketing.
Surely, Apple can teach us a thing or two about product marketing. If you’re brainstorming ideas about how to get creative with your product marketing, look no further than Apple’s old campaign that solidifies Apple’s value in a market dominated by Microsoft.
Apple went on an ad-creation spree. No kidding—there are about 66 versions of its ad where two people (representing a Mac and PC) talk. Here are all versions of that ad:
It’s clear that simply talking about your value prop isn’t enough. You need to give your audience what they’re looking for. Apple tries to talk to people who want a computer that takes care of personal computing requirements plus the creative end of things. When you’re done watching the ads, the messaging leaves you with the feeling that Mac certainly is a better choice for when you want a user-friendly computer to play music, edit some photos, etc.
To create such ads you need to understand your competitors really well and also need to have an honest look at how you fare against the competition. Once you have your value prop clearly defined, you can either go ahead and create comparison videos like Apple did or you can also go ahead and run simple social media ads that highlight your USP. To create these ads, you can easily take the help of a tool like InVideo that comes with hundreds of templates and millions of stock assets to help you create video ads quickly and easily.
Product marketing is fairly green, and ready for lots of sowing. Since the field is only starting to gain momentum, it has only had one awards ceremony so far. The Product Marketing Alliance held one in 2019 and guess who won the award? G2.
Why is this surprising? Because back then, G2’s product marketing function had existed only about six months. Even more importantly, the team had three people.
The small product marketing team at G2 managed to pull off something excellent, though. The team had, on average, introduced one feature each week and gotten over 200 people to integrate G2 into their platform. The Product Marketing lead attributes their success to figuring out ways to tap into a prospect’s feelings.
This proves that you don’t need to invest a ton of money or have a large team to have a successful product marketing function. What you do need to focus on is understanding your customer and using that knowledge and understanding to create your messaging through organic content and paid ads. And you can turn to InVideo to create videos for content and paid marketing.
Creating content is one of the best ways to get your product’s positioning and messaging right. If you’re not building a narrative around your product by talking about it through marketing assets like videos, blogs, and case studies, you’re leaving room for interpretation for prospects. And creating marketing assets might feel daunting, especially if you’re a small team or business but using the right set of tools will ensure that you’re able to create them quickly. For instance, if you’re creating videos to educate your audience, using a user-friendly editor like InVideo can go a long way in saving your team.
To get a deeper understanding of how to go about creating a marketing strategy for your product and brand, check out this in-depth guide. And if yo prefer learning via video, check out our YouTube channel where we share daily tips and tricks on how to use video to grow your brand.