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How do you build product marketing for a company that doesn’t understand the function?

3 Answers
Kristen Brophy
Kristen Brophy
National Basketball Association VP, Direct to Consumer MarketingMarch 24

Product marketing is a relatively new function so this is a question I get a lot. 

A great way to help companies undestand the PMM function is by helping them understand the value of product marketing. There are all sorts of way to establish value. One place to start is by clearly defining what you and your team's contribution will be (which should map to the overarching business goals) and then delivering against those goals.

Socializing your team's stated goals and objectives with internal roadshows could be your first step in helping the organization understand the PMM role, responsibilties, and objectives. Once you've established and socialized your goals, check back in with your organization (frequently!) when you have results and achievements to share. These results should show how your team delievered against the objectives you laid out in your intial plan and how your team has positively and measurably impacted the business.  

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Martin Raygoza
Martin Raygoza
Google Marketing Head for YouTube Shorts Mexico & Spanish LATAMSeptember 28

To build a product marketing team or strategy for a company that doesn't understand the function, can be challenging, especially if this is the first time you are taking this journey. Here a some tips that could help navigate this process:

  1. Identify and Educate your main stakeholders: It might sound silly, but you will need to do some teaching if you want anyone to buy into your idea. Explain preferably with business cases and examples how product marketing teams had successfully created value for other companies in the past. The good news is that usually the main stakeholders are reduced to 2-4 people at most. Make sure you get the right ones though. 

  2. Align with overall business goals and strategy: The easiest way to get your project rejected is to show that you are not connected to the organization’s objective. Make sure you show how a product marketing team can help close the company’s gaps or pain points and how it can  help to achieve x results. Any top executive from any company will most likely ask for measurable goals for your product marketing efforts.

  1. Start small:  Getting resources for a new area is always a challenge especially if you haven’t proven its value. So make sure to create a MVP that can help you scale once you proven the value to the company and focus on a few key initiatives that will have the biggest impact.

  1. Get the right people involved: You are going to need to work with different areas of the company to make it happen, So it could be a good idea to create a cross functional team structure that can ease the whole process.

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Eric Bensley
Eric Bensley
Asana Head of Global Product MarketingNovember 21

Such a good question and there's lots of ways I could answer. But I'll stick with my tried and true, find the executive stakeholders that need it most, and solve for their pain points fast. In my experience, here they are:

-Sales leader - AEs do well 1:1 but they don't scale. The question to answer here is how good product marketing helps drive more quality pipeline and how good product marketing can help them scale their team up with a consistent narrative.

-Product leader - Know the product super well and the space but are almost always underwhelmed with how much coverage their product gets in the market. The question to answer here is how you can amplify what they're doing in news, campaigns, sales pitch decks, etc.

-CMO - There are so many things going on across a marketing org, it's really hard to calibrate what's working and how to have more impact. The question to answer here is how you could have more impact as an org with consistent and integration marketing programs.

And the great thing is over time, you can start to scale your team out to support these different stakeholders. For instance, alignment to sales leadership is often called GTM PMM and alignment to product leadership is often called core PMM. Get wins with these stakeholders and then ask for more people to support it as you grow.

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