There is something to say about SolarWinds. First, let me set the record straight. I have joined SolarWinds in January as Sr. Director of Business Strategy and I am probably still drinking the Kool-Aid. Having said that, one of the reasons I choose SolarWinds over an executive position at an early stage start-up was that I was very intrigued by their business model. SolarWinds sells IT Management software to companies of all sizes without any sales rep in the field. They don’t even have a professional services organization. They market their products on the web and they close each transaction … Continue reading We are working on a new product. Can you name it?
During the holidays, I went through my inbox and unsubscribed from the many vendors that over the last 12 months have continuously sent me offers with little to no value. The process to unsubscribe is usually pretty straightforward and uneventful. Then came Groupon with this short video: Needless to say that I did punish Derrick (it’s not you Derrick, it’s me). The simple addition of this video actually got me to re-consider whether or not I should unsubscribe from Groupon. Well just for a few seconds. Seriously how many more white teeth cleaning offers can I consume within a year? … Continue reading Groupon Wants You To Punish Derrick
This week I had the privilege of attending Forrester’s Tech Marketing Roundtable here in Austin, TX. As usual, Forrester put together a great discussion with fellow product marketers and shared some fascinating insights. Forrester also invited a guest presenter for the discussion, Dr. Art Markman from the University of Texas. Dr. Markman’s topic of discussion was on how to make your company a habit (Side note -keep an eye out for Dr. Markman’s upcoming book,Thinking Smart. Sounds like a great read for Product Marketers.) Your first question may be, why should you care about your customer’s habits? Here’s one good reason from Dr. Markman: In the end, the … Continue reading Getting Your Customers to Stop Thinking of You
Over the last month, I have been doing a lot of research on brand development, customer engagement, and community building. After going through half a dozen of the latest books on the subject, one has really stood out – Wikibrands by Sean Moffitt and Mike Dover. I like how the book covers strategies and tactics along with plenty of example of businesses that are succeeding by co-creating branding efforts with their most engaged customers. If you are looking to build a brand community or for ways to improve your social business, this book has a lot to offer. The following are … Continue reading 13 Tweetable Insights from WikiBrands
Having a system in place to capture customer feedback is essential to understanding how your customers feel about your product offering. I am a fan of the Net Promoter feedback approach and would recommended the book on the topic, the Ultimate Question by Fred Reichheld and Rob Markey. That’s why I was excited to hear that they are releasing a new version of the book and were recently on the HBR IdeaCast podcast to talk about the update. While the basis of their framework, “Would you recommend us to a friend?“, hasn’t changed, it has been over five years since the first edition of … Continue reading The Ultimate Answer to the Ultimate Question
It was turning out to be a great year. The product I had planned and launched was hitting the market to fantastic results and the sales team was close to doubling their forecasts. Additionally, the market research that I had spearheaded had resulted in the success of two more products in our portfolio. I thought all was going swimmingly well but that was not the case. Bonus checks arrived and despite my shaking the envelope as hard as I could, there was nothing extra to make up for the extremely light check. While my team’s part of the portfolio had performed above average, the company had missed their financial … Continue reading Building The Line
In this week’s edition of the Start with the Customer Prodcast (a product focused podcast), I am honored to be joined by Tim Johnson, of It’s About Value, and Scott Sehlhorst, of Tyner Blain. Our discussion covered two main areas – the opportunities and challenges of trade shows and customer experience. For trade shows and conferences, we started the discussion on how to capture value from these events and finding the right events in the first place. Moving over to customer experience, we focused on what it takes to make products people love. Hope you enjoy the show! You can listen here: or download … Continue reading Start With The Customer Prodcast #4 – Unvarnished Feedback
Welcome to the first episode of the Start with the Customer podcast! I am a big fan of podcasts and have been listening to several for a couple of years now. You just can’t beat the education and the convience of listening on your way to work or on the road. Plus the fact that all of this is available for free is absolutely incredible. I had been kicking around the idea of putting together a “prodcast” to talk about marketing, product management, and product marketing for sometime now. I convinced Jon Gatrell, of the Spatially Relevant blog, and Scott Sehlhorst, of the Tyner … Continue reading Start with the Customer – The Podcast
Last weekend, while perusing the magazine rack at Barnes and Noble, I noticed that they were now selling full magazine subscriptions to the Harvard Business Review (HBR). I was surprised to see that the in-store price at B&N was only $69. Last time I checked, HBR was usually north of $100 so this seemed like a great deal. I didn’t pull the trigger at the time, but left thinking that at $69 it was too good a deal to pass up. I had subscribed to the HBR in the past so it was no surprise that later in the week I received an offer … Continue reading Harvard Business Review Gone Wrong: When You No Longer Preach What You Teach
I came across this video earlier in the week and just couldn’t resist sharing. While meant to be taken lightly, the video does an outstanding job of illustrating marketing strategy. All it really takes is three little steps, Determine your end goal Use the best tools for the job Don’t forget the mini-pony Enjoy and have a great weekend!