Mary Sheehan for Product Marketing Community

June 12, 2023

Video Transcript

Speaker: Mary Sheehan , Adobe

Please introduce yourself.

Mary Sheehan : Hi, I'm Mary Sheehan, author of the Pocket guide to product launches, host of the women in product marketing podcast and a product marketing leader at Adobe.

What are some of the typical challenges with product launches? And how do you mitigate them?

Mary Sheehan : There are two main challenges when it comes to product launches, alignment and timing. Let's talk about alignment first for alignment. The first question you need to ask yourselves internally is are we ready to launch? Is this something that we should launch? You need to a really thorough understanding of who your customer is, what the value is and what you are delivering and make sure that everyone internally is really on board with that game plan aligning internally using something like a DC model is critical to the success of your launch. The second is around timing, this is a little bit art and a little bit science. Of course, you want to time things on the marketing end when they have the biggest impact. But you also want to have that magical time when the product is ready or about ready to be in beta. So working really closely with not just the product management team but also the engineering leadership to really understand when that magical time will be that you can amplify and get the most out of your marketing and customer channels as well as when the product is ready to launch. Keeping a weekly cadence where you check in on all the dependencies, having milestones and making sure that everyone is really aware and on the same page about what is launching, when is the best way to make this happen?

How do product marketers lead a product launch when roadmaps and priorities are constantly changing?

Mary Sheehan : A question I get a lot is around how do product marketers lead launches when road maps and priorities are constantly changing. I have two pieces of advice. One is have a visual queue that you share with product teams on a really regular cadence. This can either be a road map or even an Excel sheet with all the launches and going through them line by line to make sure things are really on on track. Second is really thinking about bundling moments um and really having it be around a feature pack or set of features that speaks to a customer value rather than really having one specific feature, tell the whole story. So if you miss it, it's not going to blow up any of your launch plans. So really thinking about the visual queue connecting regularly with your product team and also making sure that you're bundling launches around customer value. So it's more about the message to the audience versus all of the bits and pieces that are gonna launch. We're in

How do you suggest PMMs get their sales team more engaged to benefit their launch?

Mary Sheehan : One thing that's really important to your launch is making sure that the sales team is really engaged to help benefit anything that you're doing. So I have a couple of pieces of advice around this one is making sure at a high level, you align to the core sales metrics. So make sure that the launch is really clear about driving quota, driving A R R driving pipeline leads and make sure that the sales team really understands how that connects to the goals that they're facing. Secondly, overly prepare the sales team, make sure that they have all the talking points, the newest and latest greatest sales enablement activities, make sure that they for really big repositioning changes. They're able to tell the story in a great way and maybe even have pitch certifications about this and then follow up, ask them what questions they're getting from the market, ask how it's going sit in on sales calls and just make sure that this is something that isn't a set and forget it after you launch.

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