Within 15 minutes of starting a Pragmatic Marketing class, our instructor told us that he deplored the use of the word “solution” in high tech marketing. The word “solution” just may be the most over-used and least understood word in tech marketing today. So you might think that you should run as far away from that word as possible. You might think that you should retreat to terms like “products” and “services” and “offerings” (as if that was clear). And you’d be wrong.
Reality: The word “solution” is here to stay. Everyone uses it, and there’s no escaping it. Now the question is, what does one mean when one says “solution.” Let’s take a look at that…. Merriam Webster defines “solution” in several ways including,
“1 a: an action or process of solving a problem b: an answer to a problem”
So a “solution” solves a problem – in this case, your customer’s problem. And a solution includes whatever it takes (or as much as possible) to solve the problem. Taking it a step further, I’ll define “Solution Marketing” as…
The process of defining, informing, and providing access to complete and integrated solutions that help customers to solve their problems and achieve value.
This may sound like a lot like “Product Marketing” but it’s not the same. Solution Marketing relies on some of the same principles but there are many distinctions, which I’ll discuss in a later blog post.