Join Drew Boyd for an in-depth discussion in this video Creating the right products and services, part of Marketing Foundations.
Marketing is all about delivering value to customers. And you do that by offering them the right products and services. Think of products and services as benefit delivery vehicles. They're a collection of various features that create value when customers use them. So, how do you build the right product or service? For that, you need to go back to the analysis phase of the marketing planning process. From there, you'll need the results of your product analysis.
That's where you did a detailed comparison of how your product compares to the competition's, feature by feature. You also created the feature benefit ladder, that unpacked the product to see how features connect to the benefits that customers seek. You will also need the customer analysis. Especially the market research on what factors are most important to customers when they buy a product, as well as the data on how they perceive your brand versus the competition. And finally, you'll need your marketing strategy, as expressed in your value proposition that we covered earlier.
As a marketer, you have to give your development team guidance on four aspects so they build the right product. First is, what features the product must have to compete against the competition and also satisfy the customer? You have to especially guide them on what features or feature to emphasize the most. Look at your value proposition. What benefit are you promising? Then look at your feature benefit ladder. Find that benefit on the ladder, then move down the ladder to find the set of features that deliver it.
You want to make sure those features are most evident when the customer uses the product. Next, your development team needs guidance on performance of each feature. Once again, your value proposition should guide you on whether the product needs to work better than, the same as, or slightly less effectively than the competition. Also look at your market research. If consumers perceive your product as less effective on a particular feature, you may need to have the development team increase its performance.
Your development team also needs guidance on design. Meaning the look and feel of the product or service. What does your brand stand for? Given that, what must your product or service look like to express that brand essence? Finally, your team must think of the product or service as an entire customer experience. Remember the customer buying process from earlier? Think of each step as a touch point where you, as the marketer, have an opportunity to figuratively touch the customer with something about your product or service.
Touch points include things like the service customers get in a store. And how your products are displayed. It also includes things like the packaging and perhaps the instructions on how to use the product. Everything the customer comes in contact with, including things online, are touch points. Based on their experience at each touch point, the customer will form beliefs about what your brand stands for, whether it's consistent, believable, and authentic.
The more authentic, the more loyal your customers will become. And that's a very good way to build your business.
You'll also learn to address tactical challenges and present the plan to get buy-in throughout an organization, from the C-suite to the sales team, as well as use the marketing plan to guide outside agencies and vendors. Finally, you'll learn how to launch the campaign and measure its performance.
- Marketing in an organization
- Assembling the team
- Creating the marketing plan
- Analyzing your products, customers, and market
- Segmenting customers
- Creating a value proposition
- Developing a strategy
- Setting goals
- Setting prices
- Using social media
- Presenting your plan to leadership
- Budgeting your plan
- Measuring success