If you have market driven products then don’t you have a market driven company?

There are three key differences between market driven products and a market driven product company.

Market-driven products, if taken literally, could result in multiple product silos with competing goals and contention over resource allocation.

Market-driven product companies adopt a “whole is greater than the sum of the parts” approach. They leverage their entire portfolio to create higher value multi-product solutions for named market segments that ultimately accelerate revenue by making customers more successful.

Here are three key differences between market-driven products and market-driven product companies.

1. Market Perspective

Market-Driven Products – Each product is driven by its own market assessment and is usually limited to trends within a horizontal product category.  Additionally, executives, business development and marketing may also conduct market assessments to drive other initiatives that could eventually clash with the product direction.

Market-Driven Product Companies
– The organization (including products) is driven by a single view of the market that encompasses vertical, horizontal and operational trends as well as forecasted growth and revenue potential in each market segment.  The result is a single interpretation of the market that will simplify priorities across product, marketing, sales and operations teams.

2. Strategy

Market-Driven Products – Each product forms its own strategy and roadmap independent of other products.  The ensuing competition for mindshare and resources result in little or no impact in any market or product category.

Market-Driven Product Companies – A single company strategy is driven by vertical market segments that best support short and long term goals.  Product roadmaps, marketing strategies, sales planning, finance and operational infrastructure follow suit.  It exemplifies the metaphor, “everyone on the same page.”

3. Product Release Cycles

Market-Driven Products – Each product team competes with other product teams for development and marketing resources to be successful.  Usually, no one product gets the lion’s share of resources and everything progresses at a mediocre pace.  Marketing messages reflect product silos and salespeople sell products they’re most comfortable with.  Revenue can go in either direction.

Market-Driven Product Companies – The lion’s share of resources go to products that will generate the most revenue from one or more market segments.  Some products may get very little or nothing in any given timeframe.  Marketing messages are segment-specific and sales teams sell higher-priced multi-product solutions that cater to specific industry issues.  Revenues consistently go north.

So don’t take the notion of market-driven products literally.  You may be frustrated by the results.  Use a common view of the market to drive every facet of your product company.  You’ll love the results.

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