AGPM – How do you choose between major and minor product releases?

Here is our latest contribution to Ask a Good Product Manager

Question: When should a product have a “major release” vs. a “dot release”?

Are there any general rules for when to move to a major (.0 release)? My experience has been that if there is a major functionality change or a new interface or product overhaul, it is good to move to a “.0″ release. Customers plan differently for a major release ,and if we slip a 3.4 release in on them when it is a major change, they will be frustrated, so calling it a 4.0 would be better.

Plus, there is the entire marketing side of things. Can you offer some advice or point me to somewhere to read up on this? Specifically, we just came out with 3.0 of my product back in January – and have released 3.1, and soon 3.2 – and we are overhauling the interface in Q3. I really want to call it 4.0. What do you think?

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