Written by Shwe Ahooja, Director of Product Marketing
The human attention span is only 8 seconds — one less than that of a goldfish.
In the product marketing world, if your messaging doesn’t hit the mark in eight seconds or less, you’ve lost your opportunity to engage with a potential customer. If you don’t demonstrate immediate value through your communications, you risk becoming a part of your customers’ digital junk pile.
So, how do you strike while the iron is hot (or while the attention span is there) to sell your product? Read on for 5 tips to help you get started.
1. Take a customer-centric approach, always.
Before you do anything, ask yourself the following questions:
- What are the customer’s unmet needs?
- Have those unmet needs been validated using market research or data?
- Is our product solving the need(s)?
Listening to your customer using survey data, customer interview insights, market research, and social media will help you make targeted, customer-focused messaging decisions, setting you up for success. Long-term, it will ensure engagement and customer loyalty.
2. Connect the dots between data and insights.
Data builds credibility when combined strategically with customer knowledge. Various analytics tools, such as Pendo or Google Analytics, can help you do this. Using customer behavior and purchase data, you can glean insights that help you understand your target audience (who uses the product the most), the specific needs (which type of product) and the type of message that will resonate best. Then, you can translate the numbers and what you know about the customer into the value that you’re delivering.
As an example, if your company is considering launching a new beverage, use existing numerical data on beverage sales, by customer segment, to predict who will adopt the beverage, effectively narrowing down your audience. Combine that with customer or industry insights (these can come from internal or external research sources) so you can hone in on what is important to the segment. Once you know the who and the what, you can begin to articulate the why — why is your product the right one for this segment, and why should the customer consider you over the competitors?
3. Be smarter than your competition.
Do your homework. It is not enough to only know who your competition is — you need to fully understand their value propositions, their target customers, and, most importantly, their weaknesses. This will require actions like researching, doing mock demos, signing up for the competitor’s communications, and beyond.
Carve out your place by focusing on your product’s strengths and value to customers. Differentiate yourself among the competitive landscape by creating messaging that highlights what sets you apart from the alternatives.
Bottom line — ignoring your competition is like going into litigation without a solid argument. You will always lose.
4. Know and communicate your value proposition, clearly.
Now that you have identified the needs of your customers, gathered supporting data, and done your homework on the competition, it is time to start telling your story. Craft and communicate your unique value proposition to your customers, concisely.
To do so, carefully think about the what — what are the benefits of your product? Next, think about the why — why are these benefits important, and why should your customers care? Finally, make the connection — how do your identified benefits solve your customer’s pain points? Remember, there may be many others offering the same or similar solution, so differentiating yourself from others is critical when you deliver this value message to your customer.
5. Evaluate and iterate, repeatedly.
As a product marketer, your job does not end once the product is in the market. It is not only enough to commercialize the product — you must also focus on driving adoption. To fully understand the power and success of your story, ask yourself:
- Is every element of your story (see list above) resonating? For example, you can measure this by evaluating if customers are progressing on your website to learn more about said product (using heat maps and traffic analytics), and if sales conversations are resulting in interested customers that want to learn more (advancing opportunities through the pipeline).
- Are customers adopting your product, i.e., are you seeing increased purchase volume or usage after launch? If yes, be inquisitive about what your customers love about the product through customer interviews. Learn from these conversations so you can expand the narrative in the long term and create loyalty. If not, what are the opportunities? Think about ways to optimize your product based on customer sentiment or responses received via feedback tools on your website, live customer conversations, commentary in surveys, or email outreach. Also, consider if there are ways to clarify the value your product offers.
Successful products are never one and done — they require constant nurturing so they stay top-of-mind for your customer.
A great product marketer’s role is to create awareness, drive demand, and increase adoption of the company’s product, all while keeping the voice and needs of the customer at the forefront. Create meaningful and impactful messaging using the 5 tips above so you can not only draw customers in immediately, but also keep them coming back. Remember, you have 8 seconds or less to make your magic work!
If you need creative assistance along the way, check out how Design Pickle can be a solution for you.