Product Managers are the ultimate champion within an organization for a given product (or service). At a very high level, they are responsible for figuring out how to match thier customer’s needs with their companies capabilities. At any given time, as Geoffey Moore points out, they are seeking is to grow, defend, maintain, or create business in a given market.
To achieve this , product managers will often be engaged in one of these types of tasks.
1. Market Analysis: Taking action to understand customers current needs, staying on top new technology trends that could impact ones products and customers, and keeping abreast of competitors activities. This is often done by talking extensively with customers, attending industry tradeshows, and conducting extensive research.
2. Product Strategy Planning: The purpose behind all the information and knowledge gathering in step 1 is to have enough to work with to make sound business decisions on objectives for a product. Determining which markets and customer segments to target, and how to position ones product against the competitive set, and creating compelling business cases are often done in this realm.
3. Execution: Taking action to execute on the goals set in the previous stage. In the classic sense, it is implementing elements of the marketing mix. This includes product definition, product pricing, product promotion, and product place (or Distribution). Each of these elements requires unfathomable amounts of planning, partnering, and management. Often a product manager will be focused on only one of these elements for a given product (or product line).