Meaning of product strategy
There's always a strategy behind every innovative product. No product blazes a trail if the strategy behind it is flawed. There are illuminating examples of products whose inventions were serendipitous accidents, but the budding idea behind it couldn't have flourished without the guideline and direction of a strategy.
In simple terms, a product strategy is a plan that's laid out by a team or an organization to accomplish certain product development goals. These goals are formulated on the basis of the initial idea and vision that the creator(s) of the product has. Organizations can think of a product development strategy as a roadmap to get your product from point A to Point B through its lifecycle.
Creating effective product strategies
In pursuit of success, most product creators tend to overlook the elements of an effective product strategy. On the contrary, a better understanding of these elements of your product development strategy will strengthen your roadmap and increase your chance of success. Here's what they should always keep in mind while creating effective product strategies:
The primary and most crucial element of a product strategy is the vision—something that makes a product different. A product vision serves as the foundation for all other product development strategy elements to follow. It determines the right target audience, the core needs the product intends to satisfy, and how efficiently the product can solve common problems.
2. Market analysis
A product is less likely to become successful if it is developed without taking a close look at the market. No product development strategy is complete without accurate information about market conditions. This is the reason why every product strategist should conduct a thorough market analysis, which includes competitive analysis, top-down/bottom-up market analysis, trend analysis, PEST analysis, and many more.
3. Product goals
Another extremely crucial element of a product strategy is product goals, which should align with the overall business goals. The product goals give a clear view of the target your business should achieve. These goals are measurable and achievable, and they serve as benchmarks for the performance of a product throughout its lifecycle.
4. Product positioning
The positioning of the product before launch can make or break its fate. Product positioning is one of the most crucial functions that product strategists have to perform because it highlights the product's unique selling proposition (USP). It supports the marketing plan and prepares the product for an eye-catching launch. So, they will have to ensure that their product development strategy keeps the intended benefits in mind and positions the product in a way that appeals to their audience.
5. Product initiatives
It's not enough to merely design a product and launch it in the market. Product developers need to put in effort for your product goals to materialize. This is the reason every product strategy should lay down the initiatives that would enable the organization to achieve its goals. If the objective is revenue generation, then strategists will have to connect their goals to a long-term product roadmap. It's important to make sure they invest in product initiatives that bring their product and organizational goals to fruition.
Last but not least, creating effective product strategies requires numbers. A product development strategy may not be a business plan per se, but it's certainly deserving of data. Depending on the nature of the product, product developers can present data related to profit and loss expectations, revenue forecast, conversion rate estimation, and many more. The more data they gather, the more credible and robust their product strategy will be.
The above discussion intends to give readers an idea of what a product strategy is and the various elements that product developers should consider while creating and launching a product. It takes time and patience to come with an effective product development strategy. But mastering it surely guarantees success.