【译文】B2B产品管理的20条实用规则(9-12)(字多无图挺有用)

RULE 9:The building is full of product experts. Your company needs market expert

大楼里到处都是产品专家。但你的公司需要市场专家

There’s nothing worse than a marketing person who knows little about the product they’re marketing. Matters not whether you’re “just” in Marcom; minimal fluency is required. The bar gets raised for Product Marketing and Product Management, of course.

没有什么比一个营销人员对他们营销的产品知之甚少更糟糕的了。你在传播中是否“感刚好”并不重要;最低限度的流利是必需的。当然,产品营销和产品管理的门槛提高了。

But as the rule says: If you’re in technology marketing: The building is full of product experts. Developers. Services folks. Sales engineers.

但正如规则所言:如果你从事的是技术营销,那么大楼里到处都是产品专家。开发人员。服务人员。销售工程师。

Nice if you can demonstrate your understanding of SOA, your appreciation of MDM, your giga-intimacy with bits, bytes, and all assortments of hertzes. What the company also (and really) needs from Marketing is insight on what’s happening in the market.

如果您能够展示您对SOA的理解、您对MDM的欣赏、您对位、字节和所有类型赫兹的giga-intimacy,那就太好了。公司在市场营销中真正需要的是对市场动态的洞察。

What’s the competition up to? What trends—both technical and business—do you need to watch? What’s up with the wonderful world of compliance and regulation? (Eek! It’s everywhere.) What’s going on in your verticals?

竞争对手在搞什么名堂?你需要关注哪些技术和业务趋势?合规和监管的精彩世界是怎么回事?(呀!到处都是)。你的垂直领域里发生了什么?

Not to mention what’s lurking out there that might have an impact on your customers and prospects—and how they might benefit from your product at this particular time. And just how do those customers use your product? What connections are they making between the features and benefits? What are they asking for? What do they need that they aren’t requesting?

更不用提潜在的可能会对你的客户和前景产生影响的因素——以及他们在这个特殊的时期如何从你的产品中获益。那么这些客户是如何使用你的产品的呢?他们在特征和利益之间建立了什么联系?他们要什么?哪些是他们没有提出的需要?

Sure, it’s great if you can read binary, but in the long run, your product is better off if you can read The Wall Street Journal.

当然,如果你能阅读二进制文件当然很好,但从长远来看,如果你能阅读《华尔街日报》,你的产品会更好。


RULE 10:Find market segments that value your distinctive competence

找到那些重视你独特能力的细分市场


I suspect that all marketers have, at some point, attempted to broaden their market to extend beyond whatever segment in which they find themselves. Sometimes this makes absolute sense. The problem occurs when you start convincing yourself that your offering—as is—will work for everybody.

我猜想所有的市场营销人员,在某种程度上,一直都试图扩大他们的市场,以超越他们所发现的任何细分市场。有时这是完全有道理的。当你开始说服自己,你的提议——即是——将适用于所有人时,问题就出现了。

At the macro level of “distinctive competence,” you’re not going to sell bleeding-edge technology into an industry where companies typically adopt new-fangled “stuff” with a five-year lag. You’re not going to sell a costly, hands-on services model to a company that prides itself on do-it-yourself. You’re not going to sell costly bells and whistles to a company that runs on shoestring margins.

在“独特的能力”这个宏观层面上,你不会把前沿技术卖给一个企业通常采用滞后5年的新“东西”的行业。你不会把一个昂贵的、亲自动手的服务模式卖给一个以DIY为傲的公司。你不会把那些昂贵的、花哨的东西卖给一家利润微薄的公司。

At the less-grand, micro level, “distinctive competence” may translate into a feature set (or singular feature) that is ideal for one market. So it’s tempting to think that should at least be somewhat useful for other markets, as well.

在不那么宏大的微观层面上,“独特的能力”可能会转化为对一个市场来说是理想的特征集(或单一特征)。因此,它会诱导人们认为,这至少对其他市场也是有用的。

But unless that shiny new market really needs and wants what you have, heading down this path will only get you: more expense to attract fewer customers, longer sales cycles, more price resistance, and less satisfied customers. You name it; you’ll find it when you drift into territory that doesn’t value your distinctive competence.

但除非这个闪亮的新市场真的需要你所拥有的东西,否则沿着这条路走下去只会让你付出更多的代价来吸引更少的客户,更长的销售周期,更多的价格阻力,以及更不满意的客户。凡是你能说出的;当你进入一个不重视你独特能力的领域时,你就会发现它。

So before loping down the Boulevard of Broken Dreams, you owe your product a critical examination of just how and why someone wants and needs what you’ve got. Plain and simple, if you can’t come up with an answer, those potential customers won’t be able to either. Sure, you’ll convince some of them to buy your wares by sheer force of will. But that’s not the recipe for market success.

因此,在踏上梦想破灭的大道之前,你应该对你的产品进行一次批判性的检查,看看人们是如何以及为什么想要和需要你所拥有的东西。简单明了地说,如果你想不出一个答案,那些潜在的客户也不会知道。当然,你会说服他们中的一些人购买你的产品,完全是出于意志力。但这并不是市场成功的秘诀。

You may, of course, be able to create that market success by altering, or perhaps even just tweaking, your product. Just make sure that this is something you really want to do (i.e., something that fits your strategy).

当然,你可以通过改变,甚至仅仅是调整你的产品来创造市场成功。只要确定这是你真正想要做的事情(例如,它是适配你的战略的)。

Yes, focusing on your distinctive competence—or even on your simple, technical differentiation—may mean that you find yourself in a niche. This is fine, if being a niche player is what you really want to be. If not, find yourself a distinctive competence or means of differentiation that won’t relegate you to a niche.

是的,专注于你独特的能力——甚至是简单的技术差异——可能意味着你发现自己处于一个利基市场。这很好,如果你真的想成为一个小众玩家的话。如果不是,那就为自己找一个与众不同的能力或差异化的方法,这样你就不会被归入某个特定的领域。

Easier said than done, I know. But whoever said that product management was easy?

我知道,说来容易做来难。但是谁会说产品管理很简单呢?


RULE 11:Don’t expect your sales channel to conduct win/loss analysis

不要期望你的销售渠道去做盈亏分析


I wish I had a Euro for every time I sat through a pipeline review meeting and, as last month’s hot prospects transitioned into the “L” column, asked the question “Why’d we lose?”

我希望我每次参加渠道审查会议时都能得到一欧元,因为上个月的火热前景进入到了“L”列,我问了这样一个问题:“我们为什么会输?”

I should have saved my breath. After all, just as the answer to “Why’d we win?” always turns out to be “superior salesmanship,” the “Why’d we lose?” answer is invariably “Our price was too high,” or “Our product stinks,” or “They went with somebody else,” or “They did nothing.”

我应该省口气的。毕竟,就像“我们为什么会赢?”回答结果总是“出色的推销术”,“我们为什么会失败?”回答总是“我们的价格太高了”,或者“我们的产品太臭了”,或者“他们跟别人走了”,或者“他们什么都没做”。

Let’s face it, it’s just not in the nature of most salespeople to analyze why a sale did or did not happen. Plus, you want and need your salespeople to look forward, not backward.

让我们面对现实吧,大多数销售人员的天性是,他们不会去分析为什么销售发生了或者没有发生。另外,你希望你的销售人员向前看,而不是向后看。

So who does win/loss analysis—and how do you go about it?

那么,谁来做盈亏分析-你是怎么做的呢?

Ideally, your product marketing or product management team should conduct win/loss analysis. Alternatively, if you really think people are reluctant to be candid when talking with someone in-house, you should hire a third party.

理想情况下,你的产品营销或产品管理团队应该进行盈亏分析。或者,如果你真的认为人们在与公司内部的某个人谈话时缺乏坦诚,你应该雇佣第三方。

Analysis should begin with a mini-debrief with the salesperson and (better yet) the sales engineer. An initial impression by those closest to the deal may yield a useful avenue for your questioning.

分析应该从与销售人员和(更好的)销售工程师的简短汇报开始。熟悉这笔交易的人的初期感觉可能会为你提供有用的提问渠道。

Prepare a specific list of questions—about your product, pricing, and process—to review with every prospect. If you have a complex sales process that involves many different people on the buying side—influencers, decision-makers, purchasers—try to talk to several of them. Realistically, this isn’t always feasible—especially after a loss. And remember that a good, candid conversation with your prime sponsor is worth plenty; so don’t get greedy.

准备一份具体的问题清单——关于你的产品、价格和流程——与每一位潜在客户一起回顾。如果你有一个复杂的销售过程,其中在购买方面包括许多不同的人——有影响力的人,决策者,采购员——试着和他们中的一些人交谈。实际上,这并不总是可行的——尤其是在丢单之后。记住,与你的主要客户进行一次良好、坦诚的对话是很有价值的;所以不要贪心。

Beyond specific questions about product, pricing, and process, try to flat out ask lost customers the following questions: What we could have done better? What would it have taken to win? Where did the competition outshine us? For a win, ask those same questions about the competitor.

除了关于产品、定价和流程的具体问题外,试着向失去的客户提出以下问题:我们本可以做得更好的是什么?怎样才能赢?竞争对手在哪些方面让我们相形见绌?如果你想赢,那么,就去问这些和竞争对手有关的相同问题。

Win/loss conversations should be brief (no more than 10-15 minutes), and they should take place within a week or two after the decision is made. Conversations are ideal, but email response works just fine.

盈亏的对话应该简短(不超过10-15分钟),并且应该在做出决定后的一两周内进行。对话是理想的,但电子邮件回复也可以。

It goes without saying that the information should be kept in some sort of a system—and in a systematic fashion—so that you can make some sense of it as a whole and not just look at disparate information points. This analysis is not all that easy to do when you’re looking at subjective information, but there’s no point in collecting win/ loss data unless you’re planning to draw general inferences.

毫无疑问,信息应该以某种系统的形式保存,这样你就能从整体上理解它,而不是仅仅关注不同的信息点。当您查看主观信息时,这种分析并不是那么容易做到的,但是除非您计划得出一般的推论,否则收集盈亏数据是没有意义的。

Here are some ways your win/loss analysis can help you:

这儿有一些可以帮助你做盈亏分析的方法:

  • Determining which features you need to add to your product

确定需要向产品添加哪些特征

  • Refining your pricing

改善你的定价

  • Shaping your marketing message

塑造你的营销信息

  • Homing in on a more sharply defined target market

瞄准一个定义更为明确的目标市场

  • Improving your sales and marketing processes

改进你的销售和营销流程

Yes, lots of good things can and will come from win/loss analysis. Just don’t ask your sales folks to do the heavy lifting for you.

是的,很多好的事情能够并且将来自盈亏分析。只要不用让你的销售人员帮你做繁重的工作。


RULE 12:The answer to most of your questions is not in the building

你大部分问题的答案都不在大楼里


During the dot.com era, I worked for a large Internet Services Provider (ISP) where rank-and-file marketing people rarely had access to customers and prospects. I had come there from a small software company, where I went regularly on sales calls and frequently spoke with customers, so I knew I was missing something.

在互联网时代,我曾在一家大型互联网服务提供商(ISP)那里工作,那里的普通营销人员很少能接触到客户和潜在客户。我从一家小型软件公司来到这里,在那儿的时候,我定期接到销售电话,并经常与客户交谈,因此我知道我错过了一些东西。

In my three years with the ISP, I went on a handful of calls. Our sales model was multi-layered, and there were often three or four folks just from Sales on every call. No room in that clown car for another body! If Sales brought another body along, it was typically a technical expert or a product manager.

我在ISP工作的三年中,我接过几次电话。我们的销售模式是多层次的,通常每个电话都有三四个来自销售的人负责。小丑车里容不下另一具尸体!如果销售人员带来了其他人员,那通常是技术专家或产品经理。

During those years when I was starved for the outside perspective, I did participate in many events, speaking on behalf of the company, so I was able to have some interaction with customers and prospects. But it was way too limited. I also met often with industry analysts—another good source of insight and information. But I really missed customer and prospect interaction.

在那些渴望外部观点的日子里,我确实参加了许多活动,代表公司发言,因此我能够与客户和潜在客户有一些互动。但它太有限了。我还经常与行业分析师会面——这是另一个很好的洞察力和信息来源。但我真的很怀念与客户和潜在客户的互动。

Several times I created customer surveys, but was not allowed to speak with customers directly; I had to go through multiple layers of the customer support organization.

有几次我创建了客户调查,但不允许直接与客户交谈;我必须经历客户支持组织的多个层次。

All in all, it made for a very high frustration level, in which I always felt I had my nose pressed up against the window glass—able to see, but not communicate with the world outside.

总而言之,这导致了一种非常高的挫败感,在这种感觉中,我总是觉得自己的鼻子紧贴在玻璃上——能看见东西,但无法与外面的世界交流。

Fortunately, I developed good relationships with enough of the technical sales folks and sales engineers to get my questions answered. But it was not really the same as building good relationships with customers or hearing first-hand what prospects were saying.

幸运的是,我与足够多的技术销售人员和销售工程师建立了良好的关系,我的问题得到了回答。但这与与客户建立良好的关系或直接听取潜在客户的意见并不是一回事。

You really do need to get out of the building to truly understand how people use your products and services and to appreciate the benefits they derive. You need to get out there to see which parts of your message customers respond to and which parts draw blanks—or leave them cold.

你真的需要走出大楼,真正了解人们如何使用你的产品和服务,并欣赏他们获得的好处。你需要走出去,看看你的信息的哪些部分会得到客户的回应,哪些部分会让他们感到空白,或者让他们感到寒冷。

Obviously, you also need to stick your head out to get a sense of what’s happening in the economy and technology—both in general and with your industry, your market, and your competition, in particular. (Thankfully, the Internet gives us all the chance to get our heads a bit out there.)

显然,你还需要伸出你的头去了解经济和技术正在发生的变化——总体上是什么,特别是你的行业,你的市场,你的竞争对手。(值得庆幸的是,互联网给了我们所有的机会,让我们的头脑有点清醒。)

None of this is to say that there’s not important “stuff” that you can and should find out within your own four walls. There are definitely people who know things, and you should know who they are and how to tap them. But, when it comes right down to it, there’s really just one question that can only be answered inside the building, and that’s “How does it work?” For everything else, you need to look outside.

这并不是说没有重要的“东西”是你可以而且应该在自己的四壁之内发现的。肯定有人知道一些事情,你应该知道他们是谁,如何利用他们。但是,当一切尘埃落定的时候,只有一个问题只能在建筑内部回答,那就是“它是如何工作的?”“对于其他事情,你需要向外看。

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