What Does a Chief Product Officer Do?

Nick Mann
Nick Mann
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Woman with hand on her hip

A chief product officer plays a vital role in both the development and marketing of a company's product. It's his job to ensure that each phase of a product's creation runs smoothly and all departments are on the same page. Along with this, he must develop an effective marketing campaign that reaches the largest target audience possible. Consequently, this position comes with five fundamental job duties. These include determining consumer needs, overseeing product prototypes, overseeing product manufacturing, developing a marketing strategy and executing the marketing strategy.

Determining consumer needs is usually the first objective of a chief product officer. This involves identifying a target audience and figuring out what specific type of product that audience wants. For example, if a chief product officer is working for a video game company, he might want to develop a new game that appeals to a younger audience between the ages of 12 and 35. To determine consumer needs, he will often use surveys or questionnaires.

Overseeing the creation of a product prototype is generally the next step in the process. In the case of a new video game, a chief product officer might lead a team of developers in the creation of a new action game. This usually involves finding developers and assigning duties as needed. Since he will often work among different departments, a chief product officer should possess excellent communication and leadership skills.

Once a successful prototype has been created and all the glitches have been worked out, it's his job to oversee the product's manufacturing process. Basically, it's up to him to make sure that manufacturing goes smoothly and all deadlines are met. In most cases, we have to report a product's progress to department heads or the CEO of a company.

Another integral part of this job revolves around developing an effective marketing strategy. No matter how great a product is, it doesn't do a company any good if it isn't marketed correctly. Consequently, it's up to a chief product officer to come up with marketing techniques that are geared toward a product's target audience. In many cases, he will negotiate with investors for this process.

After he has developed a practical marketing strategy, he must effectively execute the strategy. This could include implementing a variety of media, such as television commercials, online advertising and social media. To have the greatest odds of success, a chief product officer will usually experiment with multiple marketing possibilities. As he tracks product sales, he might tweak his marketing methods if necessary.

Discussion Comments


I agree with you Heavant. If you don't care about the product that a company makes, you couldn't possibly create a marketing strategy that effectively sells that product to consumers.


I think that to be an effective chief product officer, you must have a passion for the product being manufactured. If you don't, I don't see how it would be possible to market and promote it with the passion needed to be successful at your job.

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