How Does Product-Based Marketing Work?
You’ve created a new product and you’re ready to launch it to the world. What’s next? In this article, you’ll learn the ins and outs of product-based marketing and how it can be used for your marketing strategy.
You’ve designed and created a great product, you have your market research in hand, you know about your ideal customers, and your marketing team is ready to hit that target audience with the news. Seems straightforward enough, right? Maybe not. That’s because, when you are ready to develop your marketing strategy and reach out to potential customers with your new product, there are two different ways you could go—product-based marketing, and customer-based marketing.
Here we’ll take a look at just what product-based marketing is, how it is different from customer-based marketing strategies and approaches, the benefits and drawbacks of product-based marketing campaigns, and some useful tips that can help you make the most of your great product launch.
What is Product-Based Marketing?
There are two “flavors” of product-based marketing—general and specific. The general product-based marketing approach is used when you have lots (and lots) of products, as well as a ton of potential new customers and/or target customers. You can see major retail outlets, grocery stores, and numerous other examples of businesses using a general product-based marketing campaign, which usually means talking about their huge selection of different products to meet any customer needs, the overall quality of products, and things like that.
Specific product marketing is, as the name implies, you have one specific product that you are launching, and you have a very clear sense of how the product meets customer needs, fits into the marketplace, provides a unique customer experience, and fits into your existing product lines. Think of when a new gaming system is launched, or when Apple launches a new iPhone—these are terrific examples of product launches where specific product-based marketing strategies would be employed.
What are Some Product-Based Marketing Strategies?
Product-based marketing strategies are very similar to work that your marketing team is probably already doing. A few examples of key marketing strategies for the product-based approach include:
- Figuring out where your product fits within a category
- Examining how your product differs from another company’s product
- Identifying target audiences and target markets
- Working with product management and sales teams to set realistic goals
- Creating a product launch plan that fits your go-to-market strategy
- Developing the content needed for various market segments and the marketing mix you selected
And much more. As you can see, many of these tasks and approaches are probably already a part of your marketing team’s process, but the key difference (and one that may inform additional strategies) is that the product is the star of the show in all of your digital marketing and traditional marketing tactics.
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How Do these Strategies Differ from Customer-Based Marketing?
Customer-based marketing is different in that its goal is to utilize data and research to build buy personas, and then craft messaging and marketing materials that directly target those potential customers. Techniques used in customer-based marketing can include some of the same as product-based but generally will have more granular and specific approaches to email marketing, social media content and targeting, trust-building with the use of influencers, and more.
Customer-based marketing also has both general and specific approaches, much like product-specific marketing does. In the general approach, customer-based marketing messages and tactics seek to increase brand awareness and create a relationship between the customer, the company, and the product. One example might be a frequent shopper card or rewards program; these types of marketing establish a reason for the customer to not only return to the business several times but reward them for doing so.
Specific customer-based marketing approaches tend to really hone in on some of the tactics we mentioned before, including targeted CRM and email campaigns, direct engagement and targeted advertising on social media, and many more examples. In these cases, companies seek to target very specific customer needs and inform their ideal customers about a specific product that addresses those needs.
Pros & Cons of Product-Based Marketing Approaches
Some of the advantages of choosing a product-based marketing strategy:
- You’ll be telling people exactly what your product can do for them, how it’s different from your competitors, and why it will make a difference
- Your message will be consistent, and completely focused on your new product
- It will help you learn about the competition and the customers
- It helps you position your product in the market effectively
On the other hand, product-based marketing only focuses on the specific product you’re launching, which means you are not getting a chance to tell customers about your brand (or your full product line). Because the marketing is so specific to the product, you may also alienate prospective customers who could be interested in your other products but won’t learn about them from this campaign. And you may also miss out on messaging opportunities or identifying larger audiences if your message is too focused or inflexible.
Important Product-Based Marketing Tips and Advice
As you develop your product marketing strategy and look to get things started, here are a few tips and pieces of advice that can help you finalize the plan and set your product launch up for success.
Take a thorough look at all available advertising and marketing avenues
Remember that SEO content development, public relations efforts, online gift guides, events and competitions, and many more options exist and may help you deliver your product message to those ideal customers.
Be ready to refine and adjust
As the data start to pour in from your campaign, make sure that you and your team are ready to adjust messaging, budget, and strategy in order to improve your campaign results.
Make it a story
Your new product is interesting, unique, and just the thing that someone has been looking for. But they may not know that if they aren’t interested. Make sure your content not only handles product positioning but also gets customers excited to learn more and make the purchase.
Ensure Your Product Launch is a Success
There is a lot to discuss about product-based marketing, and there are a lot of great ways that you can customize this approach for your product launch. Hopefully, you can see the benefits of product-based marketing strategies, and how you can create an effective campaign that helps you gain market share, reach new customers, and drive sales.
In the end, both product-based and customer-based marketing efforts are valuable, and both have a role to play in your company’s marketing strategy. For making a huge impact with your new product, though, you cannot overlook the potential impact of having a product-based marketing campaign.