Election lessons for product management; Hot Tweets; Use the phone to hone your messaging

What elections can teach us about competitive strategy

After months of campaigning, and billions of dollars spent, the latest round of US elections (presidential and other) is (mostly) behind us, and it’s a good chance to look back and ask — did we learn anything? Over on the SiriusDecisions blog, I argue that, beneath the griping about negative advertising, campaign spending, and over-focusgrouped talking points, there’s a bigger story of what elections can teach product managers and marketers about competitive strategy.

What’s hot on Twitter

Here are a few of my tweets which have generated the most interest over the past few weeks; to get these in real-time, follow me at @jefflash

  • Programmers who can talk to customers, marketers who can be technical have huge advantage over colleagues who can’t j.mp/RMBFa8 (permalink)
  • When you present a list of positive product attributes, buyers don’t add them up, they average them j.mp/Q2mr5V (permalink)
  • Don’t think research is a phase; it is ongoing. Prototyping is the way you learn. j.mp/RRBRF9 (permalink)
  • Good example of real-world bottom-up market sizing for a product idea j.mp/Q9i20Q (permalink)
  • WRITING a business case is the easy (and least important) part; what’s harder but more important is research which goes into it. (permalink)

Developing Marketing Messages? Turn to the Phone

I’ve written here before about how it’s important to speak in the language your buyers use, including leveraging common industry terminology and avoiding internal acronyms. But how do you make sure that you are hitting the mark?

My SiriusDecisions colleague Jason Hekl has a great post that describes one often-ignored approach — leverage your teleprospecting organization to improve marketing programs by listening to the language customers are using over the phone, and use teleprospecting calls as an opportunity to test variations on your message. As Jason points out, “the teleprospecting organization engages the most prospective buyers in actual conversations.”