All posts in Product Management


8 Actionable Ways to Make Your Customer’s Success Milestones Product-Oriented

8 Actionable Ways to Make Your Customer’s Success Milestones Product-Oriented_1

According to a 2020 Walker study, 86% of buyers will pay more for a better customer experience.

Customer experience is a key brand differentiator, and getting it right can determine the difference between success and failure.

In this Process Street article, we examine a customer-centric approach and explain how you can use it to be more product-oriented. That is, you’ll learn how to focus on the customer’s experience when using your product.

Taking a product-oriented approach to provide a great customer experience will set you apart from your competition, and give you the edge you need to succeed.

You need to be thinking about your customer and how they interact with your product to draw appropriate customer success milestones. Following the 8 steps in this article will help you do that.

By the end of this article, you’ll have customer-success milestones that act as a guide for the delivery of an exceptional in-product user experience.

Let’s get started!
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Should You Be More Product Oriented? Practical Advice From Wes Bush

Should You Be More Product Oriented? Practical Advice From Wes Bush

When I was still teaching, the three main points of advice I found myself repeating were:

  1. Take your time.
  2. Keep it simple.
  3. Don’t bite off more than you can chew.

As it turns out, those three statements apply to most things in life – including business. Especially business.

I know. We’ve been in an era of calculated risk, mainlining entrepreneurial spirit, and the pervasive (-ly annoying) go-big-or-go-home philosophy for so long that “going above and beyond” isn’t even status quo; it’s bare minimum requirements.

Hear me out.

No matter what else you’re doing with your company, you have to take care of your customers. You have to understand them: what they want, what they need, and what they will need down the road.

That understanding of your customer and their relationship with your product is a crucial aspect of becoming a successful product-oriented business.

So you’ve read our previous post on product-led growth (PLG) and now know all the nuts and bolts of a PLG go-to-market strategy. It’s a super-exciting concept and exactly the direction you’ve wanted to take your company in.

But. (There’s always a “but.”)

Your business – the entire customer lifecycle every user of your product goes through – revolves around the traditional sales-led approach of painstakingly coaxing every customer through each step of the sales cycle from demo to trial to paying user.

You can’t go in tomorrow morning, clear out all your established processes, and tell your sales team: Right, we’re totally changing everything right this second. Even if your sales team doesn’t laugh you out of the office, it’s not going to work.

So how do you navigate that transition and maintain your success?

I didn’t know the answer to that, so for this Process Street post, I went straight to the horse’s mouth (🐴) and asked PLG champ, author, and founder Wes Bush about how to make PLG work and become a successful, product-oriented company.

Let’s get started!
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A Basic Introduction to Creating a Software Requirements Specification

A Basic Introduction to Creating a Software Requirements Specification

Kamelia Stone is Content Manager at Marketbusinessnews. She likes to travel, meditate, and draw inspiration from different sources, primarily from books.

Software Requirements Specifications (SRSs) document describes the various software features, capabilities, coding tests, and functions that are to be implemented in the product.

These parameters also include characteristics, design details, and implementation obstacles for the development team. The structure of SRS can be modified, depending on the project, and various features/functions can be added during the process.

SRS lies in the initial, bottom stage of the entire development process. The next stages include user requirements, which detail the needs of end-users, and describing beyond the goal of the final product (business requirements).

No matter how the SRS structure is shifted during the development process, functional (if/then, data handling, etc.) and non-functional (usability, scalability, etc.) requirements always take place.

This post for Process Street will discuss:

Now let’s get straight to business.
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Build a Product That Sells Itself With Product-Led Growth

product-led-growth

“History tells us that “how” you sell is just as important as “what” you sell.”Wes Bush, The Definitive Guide On Product-Led Growth.

Slack’s revenue has grown 52 x since its launch in 2014: The channel-based messaging platform reported that revenue went from $12 million in 2014 to $630 million in 2020.

Their secret? …. Product-led growth.

Product-led growth (PLG), otherwise known as the “try before you buy” approach has helped companies like Dropbox, Netflix, Hubspot, and of course Slack go from Startup to scale up in record time.

But, the product-led growth approach isn’t just about trying before buying. There’s more to it than that. In fact, to truly be product-led you’ll need to choose between a free trial or freemium model; determine if you’ll be targeting the makers or the shakers of an organization; decide which sea you wish to sail when following the Blue Ocean Strategy; and, choose whether your strategy wants to focus on the bottom-up or the top-down.

Feeling confused? Don’t worry, this post will help clear things up. I’ll go over what product-led growth actually is and help you decide if the approach is right for you. I’ll also take a look at Slack and Hubspot, the poster children of the PLG approach to show what it looks like in practice.

To jump to a specific section click on the appropriate link below.

Let’s get sailing…
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DACI: Group Decision-Making Made Easy With Our Free Template

DACI: Group Decision-Making Made Easy With Our Free Template

We’ve all been there: an hour and a half into a 45-minute meeting. You’re trying to reach a consensus but as one department makes a suggestion, the next disagrees.

Customer success insists the next product should be geared towards students; sales thinks their parents are a better demographic. Content marketing started out by spitballing potential names until someone brought up the latest Process Street post and they all got sidetracked discussing whether it’s better to use odd or even numbers in a post title. Social marketing is scrolling through newsfeeds and graphic design isn’t even sure what they’re doing in this meeting at all.

It should have been simple: get everyone together, brainstorm ideas, then form a game-plan and timeline to use moving forward. Except no one can agree on anything and, at this rate, the only accomplishment the meeting will have made is wasting everyone’s afternoon.

Group decision-making is complicated. Fortunately, there are processes for that.

You may have already read our post on DECIDE, which is a great decision-making process for individuals. However, what works for an individual does not necessarily translate to a group. In this post, I’m going to introduce you to one of the most popular group decision-making frameworks: DACI.

The DACI (Driver, Approver, Contributors, Informed) decision-making framework is a set of processes geared toward doing just that. As a variant of the RACI (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed) responsibility matrix, DACI’s emphasis on decision clarity for complex projects often makes it the go-to framework for product managers.

That’s a lot of acronyms all at once, huh?

Don’t worry. We’ll take it slow – or you can jump straight to the point:

Let’s get some decisions made!
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