Why bigger better message maps are the best way to scale your messaging
If you’re a B2B Product Marketer who thinks it’s challenging to create and maintain your company’s messaging and positioning for use in lots of situations and in various forms, you are not alone. Product Marketers see messaging and positioning as their top responsibility* and yet there has been significantly increased challenges around maintaining and disseminating messaging for B2B marketers (which I’ll get into). But if it’s the solution to this problem you’re after, I’ve got 2 words for you: “Message Maps”.
Ok if you’ve googled “message maps” you might be thinking “there’s no way I can put all the complexity of our B2B messaging into one of those 3×3 ‘Candyland’-looking message maps”. While that might be true, it certainly IS possible to put your messaging into an array of interconnected message maps…(perhaps more like a ‘Risk’ map than ‘Candyland’). Not only is it possible, but with the right system it is by far the most efficient and effective way to manage it. Maps can also eliminate a lot of the hassles of updating your messaging like when your products evolve or you add a new use case or persona.
In this article we’ll explore what makes Message Maps the most efficient and effective way to manage your messaging in the modern B2B marketing world. Additionally we’ll touch on the most common alternative approaches and when they might be appropriate.
What is a message map and why should I use one?
In perhaps its most common form Message Maps are a visual communications tool to help people in your organization figure out what messaging to use in different situations. It’s efficient because you can write a message once and then just use the map diagram to show all the situations where it applies. So a feature description, for example, can be mapped to all the use cases where the feature applies.
These maps also provide good consistency since the same message will be used in all places where it should be used without having to rely on keeping multiple message copies in sync. And while we all know consistency is important, it goes much farther than something akin to good daily hygiene. We have a post here about how messaging consistency can increase conversion rates and improve customer experience which…is kind of why we’re doing this product marketing thing right?
But here’s the catch:
Usually these message maps are focused on high-level or generic messaging because they are often limited by what you can put on a single page.