Mel McVeigh is the Product Director at Condé Nast, one of the largest publishers in the world, responsible for brands such as Vogue, GQ, and The New Yorker. In her ProductTank London talk, Mel takes us through how to create a global product strategy.
She focuses on the following key points:
Watch the video to see Mel’s talk in full. Or read on for an overview of her key points.
Having been tasked with spearheading the merger of the Conde Nast US and International companies, Meg realized her challenge was two-fold. She needed to combine the product and technology from each company and align the customer strategy by placing multiple business models on one tech stack. Across 32 markets and 40 brands, this meant that each group was focused on its own optimization and launch features.
In order to align everything, it required her to take a step back to see the full landscape so that she could know what needed to be changed. For product people, this means you need to come up with a strategic vision by giving everyone a north star to aim for, figure out what strategy questions need to be answered, and layout plans to solve the mysteries and puzzles which need to be solved.
Use your product as a customer would so that you can see things through a different lens. This way it becomes easier to understand who your customers are and why they might be using your product. It also helps to adapt your strategy to a specific context.
Getting people to change can be hard. However, by adding constraints, it makes it easier to drive certain decisions. Measuring your process helps you to understand when and where changes need to be made. Through storytelling, you can convince stakeholders to believe in your vision before it exists.
Finally, a change in culture requires you to strike a balance between the old and the new. The path won’t always be clear and will have challenges. If you want to successfully implement a product strategy you need to allow time for seemingly disconnected things to take shape in your strategic thinking.