Product Managers and the Value Proposition

How to Identify the Current Value Proposition

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Company resources can be a gold mine for product managers. Particularly if product managers want to gain a clearer picture of  the way products are being marketed. There are 11 of these vital resources in all. Recently we’ve looked at what a product manager can gain by reviewing market research and the customer list. This post will explore the great value that comes from delving into your companies customer-facing presentations and underlying value proposition.

The Value Proposition and the Product Manager

To fully understand the importance of reviewing your company’s customer-facing presentations, product managers need to first have a clear idea of what a value proposition is. Simply stated, a value proposition is a clear and concise statement about the benefits a customer will gain from using your company’s product or services. The most effective value propositions appeal to the customer’s strongest buying motivations. These may include:

  • Decreased costs
  • Improved revenues
  • Increased market share
  • Enhanced operational efficiency
  • Better customer retention

Collect Customer-Facing Presentations

Throughout the year, sales, marketing, business development, professional services, and the executive team make presentations to customers. Each gives customers an impression of your company and its products or services. To gain a clear idea of what various departments and employees are saying about your organization, product managers need to gather current presentation materials from each department and compare them. Are the messages being communicated consistent or do presentation materials alter the product’s value proposition? Are the presentations making any points about future development activity? What’s being promised “down the road” to customers? It’s quite common to discover vast differences in how your company and product are being presented and positioned in the marketplace by different departments.

Product Managers Need to Gain Control of Messaging

Without one person controlling what is being said about your company and product, it doesn’t take long for outdated and incorrect messages to gain a foothold in your market. The lack of a clear value proposition can quickly create problems downstream.

By reviewing the company presentations product managers can gain insights into how cohesive or fractured your messages have become and take steps to correct them.  Your review is also a good way to uncover any commitments that have been made to customers that will have to be addressed down the road. Ultimately, reviewing company presentations to customers will give product managers a clear idea of how large a challenge you face. It will also help you to better manage the perceptions held by your colleagues, clients and the market.

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