My Top 4 Metrics, as a Product Manager


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With the margin between success and failure ever-so slim, it is important as a product manager that you are data-driven. Data is the justification for your roadmap, it is the justification for further development, or abandonment. Being able to quantify your product with metrics, provides you with the measurement ammunition for articulating the viability of your product to stakeholders.

So what metrics should you be looking at, as a product manager, to measure your progress? Well the answer is, most teams have their own carved out mother of all metrics (MoaM), so there isn’t one solution fits all. Having said that, these are My Top 5 Metrics, as a Product Manager.

1. Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

This refers to an estimated cost needed to acquire every new customer, derived from various initiatives. For example, if you spent $5k in promoting your product and obtain 5 new customers, the CAC is $1000 per customer.

According to Aha.io, this metric is best correlated with the Annual Contract Value (ACV) and Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) to assert whether your customer acquisition model is optimally performing.

New Monthly Recurring Revenue (NMRR)

This measures new customers, and the revenue they bring in each month, sans existing customer revenues, including upgrades to existing customers. This measurement is great at letting you track new revenue over time, the impact and size of new customers to your product.

As opposed to Add-on MRR, which measures new monthly recurring revenue existing customers bring you, such as upgrades to their subscriptions, new products purchased as a returning customer. This is important because it assesses your engagement to retain existing customers.

3. Churn

Churn measures customer or revenue loss over a period of time. It is most commonly used to track subscriptions lost, or revenue from a subscription, or active users, over a duration. You measure this, by “dividing the number of customers lost in a month by the prior month’s total.

4. Lifetime Value (LTV)

This measures the estimated net revenue of a customer over time, the worthiness if your relationship with that customer. You measure this metric by multiplying the average revenue per month by the average lifetime of the customer, in months.

Enterprise Product Development: The Customer Versus the User

As a product manager, it is important that you know who your customer is, and this holds especially true when product developing in an enterprise setting. Take Apple for example, they build beautiful products that factor extreme attention to detail to produce a User Experience (UX) language that makes it intuitive to use and interact with.

Customers you sell a product to in the consumer space have a specific set of skillsets, use cases, and personas that you customize toward, ranging from the MacBook Air college students, to MacBook Pro freelance developers, the family parents who use an iPhone for both work and pleasure.

In the enterprise world, product development personas are different. You cater towards the C-level executive personas, engineers, technical project and product managers, directors, whom have a distinctively different set of selection criterion, when using your product solely in an enterprise environment.

This is why the exercise of persona development, and empathy mapping play a crucial role in helping you understand why you are developing and for whom. Is it a User, or a Customer?

Answering these fundamental questions help you prioritize focus as far as feature development, user experience, and release management. Enterprise engineers may be interested in advanced feature sets, but not so much in the simple polished animations that you would artistically spend time crafting.