What is a portfolio marketing roadmap?
Large-scale marketing programs are complex. As any company with multiple products and services knows, driving customer acquisition and growth through marketing requires a holistic approach. But delivering consistent messages can be difficult, especially in large organizations where each product or service may have its own marketing lead or team.
A portfolio marketing roadmap is a relatively new concept. It allows you to coordinate cross-team efforts and encourages a more intentional method of understanding what customers need. You want to avoid marketing products and services in isolation — which can lead to bombarding the same group of people with multiple campaigns and disjointed messaging.
What are the benefits of portfolio marketing?
There are several advantages to portfolio marketing. You can think broadly about what buyers want across a multitude of products and services and how you will give them a positive Complete Product Experience. It encourages a consistent and integrated approach to marketing across products. It also aligns everyone around delivering a complete solution to customers no matter what specific product they are responsible for promoting.
Thinking about the portfolio as a whole (and the value it provides) also helps you differentiate yourself from competitors who offer a single solution. It allows you to operate at a more strategic level and think more like a corporate marketer. However, by staying grounded in the product portfolio, you can still drive meaningful product sales rather than merely increasing awareness. There will still be programs and go-to-market launches that are product-specific, but mapping out the key themes allows you to visualize how all the plans across the portfolio line up.
Finally, you can drive business growth through cross-selling. It is almost always more efficient to sell to an existing customer than to acquire a new one, so communicating the value of the entire portfolio can boost revenue. You can stand out by highlighting the benefits of using a combination of your offerings rather than one product or service.
How to create a portfolio marketing roadmap
Before you start building your roadmap, first review the broader business and marketing strategy. You want to be sure that whatever you plan will support those higher-level company goals. Next, capture how you will communicate the value of your portfolio to your audience. The following steps will get you started:
Identify the problems your target audience needs to solve
Consider how your products and services are bundled and sold to meet customer needs
Understand the benefits customers receive from using more than one of your products
Create portfolio-level positioning and messaging
Outline the programs and campaigns you want to pursue
Once you have those high-level components defined, you can build out the details of the work across different marketing functions. Your roadmap should include the following components:
Marketing goals and initiatives
Marketing goals and initiatives are your foundation. These are the objectives you want to achieve and the high-level efforts required to do so. Make sure each team understands how their particular goals and initiatives support the company vision and the overall portfolio.
Programs and campaigns
Programs and campaigns are the containers for your planned marketing efforts. Each one should be tied to an initiative and related goal, so everyone knows how the work they are completing supports the strategy.
Timelines show when the programs and campaigns will be delivered. Each product or service in the portfolio should have its own time frame. Include dependencies so you can visualize how delays will impact interrelated work.
Phases and milestones
Phases and milestones are components of your timeline. While phases represent specific periods of time and stages of work, milestones mark significant events or achievements you will reach along the way. They help you structure your timeline, show the progress you have made, and motivate the team to complete activities on time.
Below is a sample portfolio roadmap that shows plans for multiple products and services in a single view, along with a timeline for when the programs and campaigns will be completed. This roadmap depicts major areas of investment across the portfolio rather than each individual activity within it. If you are using purpose-built roadmap software, you can enter data once and quickly make adjustments as necessary.
Getting started with a portfolio marketing roadmap
Integrated programs, campaigns, and product messages help tame the chaos when you are trying to market multiple products and services simultaneously. Visibility across the entire portfolio is the first step to marketing your products and services in a way that best serves your audience. When you can address the problems your customer is trying to solve in a comprehensive way, you can show how your solution delivers real value.
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