The million-dollar question of the entrepreneur. Should I invest in improving the product or start promoting it. Where is the balance?
There is the eternal debate between investing in marketing or investing in product development. What is the maximum benefit for the business? Should a good product be sold simply by word of mouth?
The engineer’s point of view
Within companies there are usually two opposite points of view. The one from the marketing department and the one from the product development team. Both complain constantly that they lack resources to carry out the tasks they have. The engineer’s point of view is very simple and common sense: the best marketing in the world is a product that meets the needs of the customer.
If you do not have an adequate product, marketing can’t do a lot for you. In case of success you die faster because the deficiencies come out first. So the product has to be in a perfect condition.
The marketing point of view
The best product does not triumph but the one with the best marketing. A good offer is not sold without effort. Viral marketing does not exist. Comparisons with Google, Twitter or Facebook are not valid because they are only exceptions that confirm the rule. Companies have to invest in advertising, otherwise, they will die.
Is there an intermediate point between the engineer and the marketer?
Surely it exists because companies have no other option but to find it. Those businesses that best find that balance, are those that will be able to carry out sustainable growth.
What are the points that I have to take into account?
- You can not aggressively promote your product when you have important deficiencies at the product level.
- The smallest version of your product that you can launch is the one by which a user would be willing to spend money and make use of it.
- Time is more important than a perfect product. Getting feedback before it’s negative is worth more than positive reviews that arrive late.
- Once you have a sustainable base of users invest 80% of your marketing in loyalty and only 20% in growth.
- It is easier to maintain a client than to capture a new one. Your priority has to be with those who are already with you.
- Invest as much as you can in new features that increase value for existing customers without paying more and attract new ones.
Sometimes not doing marketing is better than doing it. Promoting your product does not mean launching ads in Google Adwords. It is a slow process where you are creating a base of contacts of future clients. Behind existing customers this is the most valuable asset of your business.