“So You’re a New Product Manager…” Part 4

Congratulations! If you have made it this far then you have a pretty good start as a Product Manager.

  • You have identified the internal staff and stakeholders and their relationship to your product.
  • You have become best friends with your product and have identified your favourite features and most annoying glitches.
  • You have established a number of metrics that will tell you when your product is doing well and when it isn’t.

Tip 4: Understand What Your Market is Saying About Your Product
Now you need to stay informed. You need to know what your market is saying about your product. Your market includes the people who have bought the product, the people who use the product AND the people who have NOT bought your product (yet).

The good news is that it is easier than ever before to find out because now customers are using the multitudes of online communications methods to tell you. Again put yourself in the shoes of the customer and search for your product. Google it. Visit Technorati. Ideally they will find your product at the top of the list. Either way, look at what they see. What other listings come up?

The widespread rise of blogging allows customers to talk about anything. The most passionate supporters or haters of your product will most probably rise to the top of a Google search. These will be the thought leaders for the market.

What you find may surprise you. The fact is that these are the new authorities on your product. These are the people that the market will listen to. Do not dismiss them and do not make decisions purely based on their comments, but do treat then with respect.

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