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Differentiation and Innovation: Your Ticket to Surviving Product Commoditization

High Octane Product Management

Differentiation and innovation are your two best options! Differentiation. Differentiation boils down to unique positioning in your sales and marketing efforts with your products and company reputation serving up the proof points. Innovation and differentiation often go hand-in-hand. The upside to the customer is huge and you now have something tangible to differentiate your solutions from the competition.

Mental Models for Product Managers – Part 2

PM Hardcore

Why my product is a better choice for you (the differentiators). For example, articulating a meaningful Dramatic Difference or “differentiator” portion of the value proposition is usually difficult. Brain Wiring (by Wellcome Images, CC licensed).

Make Your Product Stand Out with the Strategy Canvas

Roman Pichler

This means that the first iPhone was clearly differentiated. If the value curve of your product is too close to the curve of the competition, then you haven’t differentiated your product sufficiently. The Strategy Canvas.

Statistical Factors that Contribute to High Performance on Product Teams

bpma ProductHub

Developing both strategic skills and multi-year product strategy (linked to your company’s overarching business goals) provides a statistically significant path to higher levels of performance and market differentiation. Contributed by Greg Geracie.

10 Ways to Use Feature Flags

Mind the Product

From differentiating user experience for newbie versus experienced users, to managing pay-gates, to finding kind and clean ways to kill features, feature flags allow you to manage change, minimize risk and personalize user experiences.

Using Experimentation to Drive Product – Stephen Pavlovich (CEO of

Mind the Product

SaaS products often differentiate their packages by features. Stephen Pavlovich , CEO of, talks to ProductTank London about Using Experimentation to Drive Product. Why aren’t people converting and what experiments can you run to try and fix that?

Tying Strategy to Your Product Roadmap

Pragmatic Marketing

Every organization’s product goals will be different but might include: Competitive differentiation. By Jim Semick. We’ve all heard about “strategic” product roadmaps. But what exactly does that mean in practice?

Mental Models for Product Managers

Mind the Product

If you don’t have a value proposition articulated using the four part framework – category, customer, benefits, differentiators – then do it yourself. What are Mental Models? A mental model is any concept that helps explain, analyze, or navigate the world.

Apple Shows Product Managers How To Get More For More

The Accidental Product Manager

The result of this differentiation between products has been a boost in sales for Apple. The Apple iPhone 7 plus contains more features than the iPhone 7 Image Credit: Kārlis Dambrāns. You sorta gotta have some pity for the poor product managers over at Apple.

How Minimum Viable Products & Features Helped Me Write My New Book

Roman Pichler

While the workshop helped me validate the need the book should address, I was not able to tackle another key risk with it: writing the book in the right way so that the need was properly met and the product sufficiently differentiated. Minimum Viable Product #1.

Product Owner Manager – Alone Together

Tyner Blain

How do we differentiate? Product owners and product managers. Two roles, often done by one person.

Designing Your Way to Better Team Collaboration by Alison Coward

Mind the Product

Some teams at Google differentiate between “manager time” and “make time” where manager time is a 30-minute slot, and make time is a half or full day. As the founder of Bracket Creative, Alison Coward spends her working life advising creative teams on how they can collaborate better.

Third-Party Software Integration: Best Practice, Perils and Pitfalls

Mind the Product

DE: Product teams should focus on building differentiated components that are well aligned with the core vision and competencies of their company. All that cost is something you could have put towards building differentiated value.

Bigger and Better – Product Management Survey Results 2016

Mind the Product

In the past we have assumed that this is because there is little or no differentiation between these two roles, but alternative theories are very welcome in the comments! Our universe is expanding.

Goodbye Scion – What Happened To You?

The Accidental Product Manager

At the time Toyota was targeting the Generation X buyers and the Scion brand offered them a differentiation from the Toyota core line of cars. The original target audience, the Generation X buyers, valued the differentiation between the Scion and Toyota brands.

Behind Every Great Product


This solution clearly differentiated for the sales team, and also ensured quality search results, whether paid or organic. Article: Behind Every Great Product.

Classifying Market Problems

Tyner Blain

Differentiation – these are problems where, if solved, they would differentiate a product from the competition. Theodore Levitt may have developed the whole product model to help companies compete more effectively with their products.

Pricing Foundations

The Product Bistro

The contribution margin is a quick and dirty way to capture the value of each sale, and how to capture the potential profit for a pricing change (increase or decrease) and the likely volume differential. One topic that seems to trip up both new and experienced product managers is the process of pricing. As a recent post highlights, the most important lever we have in our bag of tricks to influence the profitability of our products and business, is the price.

What matters most (to investors)?

Product Manager in Heels

Market Dynamics Differentiation Defensibility Rapid Iteration TEAM TEAM was the most important thing he focused on. customer customer experience differentiation investors market teamOccasionally, we have guest speakers at Babson College, and sometimes we get a really good guest speaker! Last week I had the pleasure of meeting Scott Friend from Bain Capital Ventures.

TEI 092: Innovation mantras from R&D-with Dana A. Oliver - The Everyday Innovator – Resources for Product Managers and Innovators

Product Innovation Educators

That’s how you develop your intellectual property and develop products and brands that get differentiated and that you can establish premium pricing around. Research and development is tightly coupled with product management and innovation.

Agile Through a Matrix Lens

Tyner Blain

This is what enables a sustainable competitive advantage , by enabling you to sustainably differentiate your product from competition, rapidly adapt to changing customer expectations and market conditions.

Agile 25

Becoming the best!

Product Manager in Heels

In this article from which is called "What distinguishes the top 1% of product managers from the top 10%?" , the author talks about what most product managers do well, and what differentiates the top product managers.

Whole Product Game

Tyner Blain

To do that, it needed to allow users to address differentiated problems, or be differentiated in how it addressed those problems. Augmented product capabilities represented the differentiators for our product.

Design Disruptors (ProductTank NYC)

Mind the Product

Jenine says that passion, interest, and authenticity are the biggest differentiators. Design Disruptors was released by InVision in 2016.

Selling Around Deficiencies, Rock Star Product Managers & The Functional Designer Role

High Octane Product Management

Differentiation and Innovation: Your Ticket to Surviving Product Commoditization. The B2B Product Manager Magazine April 2017 is now available. In this issue we cover everything from selling value in spite of your product’s deficiencies to what makes a rock star product manager to the criticality of the functional designer role. Plus tips for hiring the right product manager and getting unbiased customer feedback. View the April 2017 Issue.

Three Reasons to Shift From Horizontal Products to Industry Solutions

High Octane Product Management

Making the shift from horizontal products to industry solutions boils down to differentiation…not just the marketing and messaging variety but adding product capabilities specific to key industry segments that deliver exponentially more value than generic one-size-fits-all products or services. For example, many cloud computing providers espouse IT cost savings and data security benefits while attempting to differentiate on technical superiority and service levels.

Good, Better, Best at McDonald’s

Pragmatic Marketing

Here is the ribbon to tie it together: There is little differentiation between a cheeseburger at McD’s and one at Burger King or Carl’s Jr or … But the Mac sauce is unique! It differentiates McDonald’s.

Product Training for Sales – More Buyer, Less Product!

High Octane Product Management

Contact us about our Positioning & Sales Enablement Courses that make it easy for your salespeople to sell differentiating value. Wealth made simple: news and articles from IRC Wealth. Product training for sales is one of the more daunting tasks for product managers and marketers and one of the biggest product rollout challenges in high-tech companies. You’ve created textbook sales and marketing materials.

“What-if” Scenarios: The Key to Making Good Products Great

High Octane Product Management

While the good solutions can do almost everything the great solutions do, the incremental what-if scenarios in the great solutions become a clear point of differentiation that most car dealers would prefer. Wealth made simple: news and articles from IRC Wealth. There are plenty of good B2B solutions in the market, but as a percentage there are only a few great ones.

Web Demos: Engaging An Audience You Can’t See

High Octane Product Management

There’s no better opportunity to showcase your differentiation than engaging prospects in a 2-way conversation. The #1 challenge with conducting web demos is the ability to read and engage an audience you can’t see. Is the demo going well? Are they doing e-mail while I talk? Does anyone care? Somebody, anybody, give me a sign! How do you really know if your value proposition is resonating with your prospects when you can see them?

Can You Solve Big Problems With a Single Product?

High Octane Product Management

Differentiation becomes a no-brainer as you solve more CEO-level problems. Wealth made simple: news and articles from IRC Wealth. Can a single product really solve big problems that are strategic to a customer? For 80% of B2B products and services, the answer is generally NO! Kudos to the 20% that can. What’s the Definition of a Really Big Problem?

The Functional Product Designer: A Must-Have for Product Success

High Octane Product Management

Product usability is the new currency for differentiation. That makes the role of the functional product designer, a.k.a business analyst, subject matter expert (SME) or agile product owner more critical than it has ever been, yet many organizations still insist on combining it with the product manager role. If you want high-value products with superior usability, here are the top three reasons the functional product designer needs to be a separate role.

42 Rules of Product Management

Product Bookshelf

A related rule “Differentiation isn’t enough, you have to be better” by Paul Alex Gray advises product managers to understand: 1) what customers want; 2) what you’re good at; and 3) where competitors are weak. 42 rules to live by for product managers.

Product Priorities vs. Marketing Priorities: Two Simple Questions

High Octane Product Management

This approach not only gets you out of the feature wars with competitors but it also makes the value story much easier for marketing and sales to communicate in a credible manner, and credibility can be the one differentiating factor that ultimately improves your win rate versus the competition. Wealth made simple: news and articles from IRC Wealth. Everyone has an opinion when it comes to product priorities and marketing priorities.

MRDs – How Much “Market” Is In Your Market Requirements Documents?

High Octane Product Management

Higher impact solutions differentiate you from the competition and warrant higher price points (or smaller discounts) and drive greater revenue growth. Wealth made simple: news and articles from IRC Wealth. Most B2B organizations use a M arket R equirements D ocument (MRD) for driving new solutions to market. How much of the content in those MRDs should be pure market requirements versus product requirements? A good rule of thumb — 100% market and 0% product.

Is product marketing the same as marketing? (I say no)

Under10 Playbook

I’m often asked to differentiate product marketing from marketing (or marketing communications, if you prefer). This effort gets confusing for most because of the term “marketing.” ” I’ve long been uncomfortable with the term “marketing.”

Pricing: The third business skill

Product Bookshelf

However, price is most likely not the only thing that differentiates you from your competitors. Further, perceived value can be thought of as a reference value for the category plus differentiation value for the individual offering.

Making the jump

Product Manager in Heels

My research led me to this: "the most significant differentiation between Management and Directorship is vision. Is vision the biggest differentiator?

Your first days… as product manager

Under10 Playbook

Learn the key capabilities, particularly those that are competitive differentiators. You’re in your first days as a product manager. In no time, your calendar is full and you have a zillion emails. There’s so much to do. Where to begin?

Why killer products don’t sell

Product Bookshelf

Is the target market commoditized or differentiated? Even the best products cannot overcome a poor sales process. Match your sales culture to your customer’s buying culture to successfully introduce your product and close opportunities. Identify your product’s sales needs and select the right approach to one of four buying cultures. Why Killer Products Don’t Sell by Ian Gotts and Dominic Roswell.