Unlocking Growth with Product Marketing - AMA with Utkarsh Rai

Hello Folks! Welcome back to our weekly AMA series. This week we got an opportunity to interact with a very special guest, Utkarsh Rai, who is leading Product Marketing at Airmeet. 

Let's jump straight into the AMA!

Currently leading the Product Marketing function at Airmeet, Utkarsh specializes in product marketing for B2B SaaS businesses. He has helped several early and mid-size companies to launch new products to market and drive revenue. Utkarsh also hosts the Growth Signals podcast to help founders and marketers scale their startups.

How can one create a buzz around a great B2B SaaS Fintech product and drive greater adoption?

Here's how a successful launch looks like:

Step 1: Build a messaging framework (Define the job, how you help, benefits to chose your product, what people can do, how can they do it on your product (features) and establish credibility (social proof)

Step 2: Define success metrics of the launch (Product adoption rates, win rate amongst ICPs, NPS growth, traffic to site etc.)

Step 3: Have a launch checklist (here's one I prepared for you all)

Step 4: Measure everything, request feedback and course correct if needed.

Bonus: If it's a new product or a sub-product, launch it on Appsumo (for early revenue and customers)

What does a day in the life of a B2B SaaS product marketer look like?

My day goes by doing 3 things:

  • Finding ways to drive self-serve revenue (optimising home and pricing pages, looking into lifecycle marketing plays, and analysing Typeform surveys on user needs)
  • Building go-to-market plans for upcoming product features and driving their adoption.
  • Interacting with our customers, sales and community teams to capture user expectations on how we (product marketing) can enable them to do more.

How does one go about building innovative marketing campaigns in the B2B sector ?

Jobs to be done framework is your go-to-market plan! Focus on the job. What drives it, who wants to hire your product etc. will address your targeting and positioning needs.

In my opinion, more than being innovative, be receptive and empathetic with your messaging.

Once you prepare a job card. You can go about building campaigns around the pain your audience have with their current solution.

How do you suggest someone working on a seller facing product to learn and apply product marketing strategies in their role?

If your product marketing team isn't talking to you/your team then that's a red flag and that's exactly where you start. 

Marketing teams are hungry to know more about what's working for our existing customers, their intrinsic needs, their growing expectations and which other problems in the market they are trying to solve (co-marketing play.)

You should pitch to your marketing/product-marketing head that you want to contribute to this research. This research will not just help you but also you to create your personal framework to engage with your sellers.

Are there any softwares/tools one should be well versed with before venturing into the Product Marketing domain?

It actually depends on what you're trying to do in your role and which problem you are looking to solve. Here's my stack:

  • Miro - For brainstorming
  • Trello - For showing project visibility across the leadership
  • VWO - for visitor research and A/B testing (self serve growth)
  • Fullstory - To understand user behaviour
  • Appcues - For driving user onboarding and product adoption.
  • Beamer - For feature updates (changelog) and NPS
  • Slite - For process documentation
  • HubSpot - For email automation and workflows
  • Zapier - For quick productivity hacks

How’d you end up doing the Growth Signals podcast and what have been some of the biggest learnings you’ve had in this period?

I did it because a lot of my founder friends and marketers were reaching out to find answers on the topics and questions I covered there.

So, it helped me clone myself and save on time.

Biggest learnings:

  • Podcasting is hard if you're trying to do everything by yourself. I was fortunate to get help from a couple of my ex-colleagues at VWO and Mettl.
  • It's easy to go off-track on a monologue. So, sticking to the point was the hardest. It helped me develop a way to communicate better.

How much effort should a PMM dedicate towards Competitive Intel? Does this vary based on the scale of the organisation?

It mostly depends on how competitive your market is. Following are the possible scenarios-

  • Not competitive: Means people are solving this problem with something basic (like excel sheet). Learn more about the job and how effective your solution is against the current solution.
  • Moderately competitive: Spend decent time looking into competitors and why would someone use them over you. Create a Battlecard that captures - Strengths, Weaknesses, Objection handling, feature parity and pricing.
  • Highly Competitive: Break down the brand positioning of your top competitors. (do all the things in point 2)  and realise what's your sweet spot. The only way to win is by becoming a better brand. Your founder, your sales team and marketing team needs to talk about what you're building next and work towards an exceptional customer experience.

What are some of your favourite go to product marketing books/resources?

Honestly, I haven't read a book on product marketing.

However, I read a lot of content on it on the following websites and would recommend the same:

Want to join the next conversation? We’ll be having another Product Chat soon, get your invite to our Slack community to get all the details. See you inside.

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