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Looking For More Information?
Many more marketing resources are available at Carl Galletti's Hard-to-Find Marketing Books Catalog.
Rich Mironov has written a valuable introduction to building an ASP service here.
Check the Silicon Valley Product Management Association's template page.
Here's a turnkey software solution for collaborative product management! "RymaSoft's FeaturePlan™ collaborative platform provides a repeatable process based on product management best practices for the High-Tech industry." (more)
Product Manager Job Description
This writeup was done in 1997 to provide guidance to Lawrence Poynter at TriVida. It was Riggs Eckelberry's debrief of what was expected of a Product Manager in the heyday of the Software Utilities Business Unit at Quarterdeck in the mid-90s, when it was headed by his brother Alex.
Don MacDonald, TechTransform's Product Manager in 2005 at CyberDefender, created this table at the time to answer the critical question: what's the difference between product management and product marketing?
In 1996, Quarterdeck went from three products to 26. Then-VP Marketing Koen Bouwers tried at least to get summary marketing plans done for all of them - in this format.
Marketing Requirements Documents
Quarterdeck's Michael Bolton drew up this standard format for an MRD in 1995.
This sample MRD was written for a planned Quarterdeck diagnostic product. Ultimately this product was not built but instead purchased (WinProbe, as part of the acquisition of Mike Siewruk's Landmark Research).
Another Michael Bolton effort. A Functional Spec is always guided by the Marketing Requirements Document (MRD). In case of conflict, the MRD prevails.
Michael Bolton's format for a Functional Spec, written in the classic days of utility software product management.
This Guide, written for the launch of CleanSweep 95, Quarterdeck's only other true success besides QEMM, was a typical press guide.
A sell sheet is a condensed 'cheat sheet' for use in sales channels (eg. retail outlets).
Product Launch Plans
Originally written by Alex Eckelberry, Quarterdeck's utilities business unit manager, here's a checklist for the launch of a software utility. If you became a product manager in 1995 at Quarterdeck, this is what you got. Simple, complete, great!
This template was drawn up for a 1996 product lifecycle effort at Quarterdeck spearheaded by Suzanne Dickson, today at PeopleLink. All dates adjust when the Full Customer Ship (FCS) date is set. Organized by department, this version was a little unwieldy.
Also done for Quarterdeck's Product Life Cycle standardization project in 1996, this was an attempt to include all major marketing activities and was light on development milestones. The structure was chronological, which worked rather better than the departmental version.
Elissa Murphy, then a CleanSweep product manager (now at Microsoft), came up with this summary launch plan, a model of clarity and simplicity using Excel.