Abhishek Anbazhagan

Abhishek AnbazhaganShare

Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks
Currently Building: https://productmarketingexamples.com/ Abhi is an experienced strategy and marketing consultant who has been building products and organizations in one way or the other throughou...more
Content
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks | Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, RippleSeptember 5

While all marketing aims to solve a customer problem. When it comes to category creation, you are going to focus a significant portion of your time convincing Analysts and Press that your articulation of the problem is unique and hasn't been done before.

You then use your product-adoption/sales momentum to convey how the customer is voting with their money to convince the analysts that this is indeed a new category and not a substitute product for an existing category.

Category creation is a long game and a hard one at that. 

Abhishek Anbazhagan
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks | Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, RippleSeptember 5

Personally, I like to look at insights not just from competitive products but also from the SaaS industry in general on how to best position and message our product or premium customer solution. 

There are 15 odd examples in this doc below on some great positioning/messaging.

https://coda.io/d/_d-HTSgcQEqK/B2B-PMM-Playbook-Sample_suu2d/

For example - There is a great example of how Algolia combines their ROI calculator with a Case study and tech docs to link to help a prospect understand the potential value from the product, social proof of that value, and also answer how easy it is to deploy the solution to see the value.

You can apply this to most SaaS products and the messaging becomes really powerful.

Abhishek Anbazhagan
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks | Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, RippleSeptember 5

PLG doesnt change the role of PMM. If anything a PMM becomes even more important cause in PLG, you are not training a sales team but your website/landing page to be your leading sales rep.

PMMs need to focus on conveying the value/outcomes message, handle objections, address FAQ on the landing page itself. I like to think of it as "enabling" the landing page as being a key focus for PMM in a product-led org.

Abhishek Anbazhagan
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks | Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, RippleSeptember 5

Outside of regular prep, read the description and identify what they are most looking for. I sometimes like to copy-paste the description into a word cloud tool: https://worditout.com/word-cloud/create to see what are the most commonly used words and make it point to speak to those in my interview.

Going into the interview, you need to have 5 stories you want to make sure you hit that are extremely relevant to the role even if the interviewer doesn't ask for it. Ex: If the role is very competitive research heavy, come up with 2-3 unique instances from the past where you had to do research from multiple places and present your output. 

An interview is a qualifying sales call. You need to understand what product the team is trying to solve with this role - Ask the recruiter and hiring manager that question. Then pitch yourself as the solution to that problem with relevant examples and proofpoints. Good luck :)

Abhishek Anbazhagan
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks | Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, RippleSeptember 5

Best case scenario - Beta customer/s are willing to do a named case study with video talking about the launch

Worst case - Beta customer/s quotes from the PM calls can be anonymized and shared on the website/launch blog

If it is a really significant launch, something that is going to affect in-consequential amount of revenue, then I'd like to work with the customers and try to get them to talk our press/analysts before/after the launch. Compensate them plenty with swag :) 

Abhishek Anbazhagan
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks | Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, RippleSeptember 5

At launch, it is measured through qualitative sales feedback and top-level metrics for the landing page/social engagement. 

Post-launch, go on shadow sales meetings to see customer reactions to pitch, and listen to sales call recordings. If you've done your research before launch well, your customer should be hearing their problems repeated to them in their own words to achieve immediate resonance to the pain you've uncovered. If they don't think the problem is a problem or if it is not big enough, then probe them to uncover the real pain and re-message.

Abhishek Anbazhagan
Abhishek Anbazhagan
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex, Palo Alto Networks | Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, RippleSeptember 5

SDR/BDR - Call Scripts. Your entire messaging doc is condensed to fit into one page in a manner that you can pick the most incompetent off the street and in a matter of minutes, they'd be able to uncover pain, position your solution and book a meeting. This is the single biggest piece of collateral that can have largest impact in your sales enablement process.

AE/RSM - Win/Loss reviews. The avg. AE is pretty good at positioning your solution but helping them understand what's working and what's not helps them and your enablement process improve. My fav tool for this is Gong. There are so many nuggets in Gong call recordings that have helped validate messaging, deposition competition and uncover new use cases.

Credentials & Highlights
Product Marketing Manager, Cortex at Palo Alto Networks
Formerly Xpanse, Cisco Meraki, Ripple
Studied at Duke University
Lives In San Francisco, CA
Hobbies include http://productmarketingexamples.com/
Knows About Competitive Sales Enablement, Category Creation, Analyst Relationships, Product Launc...more
Speaks English, German, Hindi, Tamil, Kannada