July 12, 2019 David Hallinan Guides, Industry Manage Your Initial Success: 4 Articles That Every Product Manager Should Read Before Starting Your Product RoadmapPhoto by Helloquence on UnsplashThe difference between a good product manager and a great product manager is mostly based on preparation. A good product manager knows when to pivot and realign their team’s goals. A great product manager minimizes the chance of unforeseen speed bumps in their development by thoroughly planning their product roadmap through market research. Because that’s really what a product managers job is all about. Research.Determining your customer’s needs and desires through market information ensures that your product won’t have to undergo last-minute functionality or use-case pivots. Assessing the market competition and accumulating source data is key to ensuring that your product will be able to succeed when it comes time to figuratively push it out of the nest and let it fly or fall. Your product is your beautiful baby bird. You’ve taken care of it, nurtured it, and kept it safe until now. But it can’t stay in that protective shell forever, and you have to trust that the months to years of work that you’ve put into this moment aren’t for nothing. Stay strong, proud parent. As long as you’ve done your job right, everything will be fine. With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of required reading for any product manager beginning their journey toward their product’s release. These articles represent the very best material we can offer to help turn you from a good product manager into a great one. #1: 6 Things to Think About When Planning for an Effective Integration StrategyPhoto by Alvaro Reyes on UnsplashOften in the rush-to-market or aim to impress early investors, we make decisions before having the chance to step back and get a bird’s-eye view of our application game plan from inception to market. From use-case to future users, to deciding between embedding integrations or not, this article will help you gain insight on some of the most important initial planning steps you need to consider as a product manager. Read all about these critical subjects and more here.#2: There’s No Place Like Deployed: The Top 4 Challenges Facing Product ManagersPhoto by Jukan Tateisi on UnsplashLet’s start out by being brutally honest. Your job as a product manager is tough. You will face adversity at every step of your product’s development, and once you do go about deploying your application, you’ll still have to plan and care for the long-term success of your product. However, that’s not to say that there aren’t ways to go about ensuring that you are as prepared as possible for unforeseen headaches that may occur. Sometimes those come from your finicky future users, and sometimes they are of your own creation. No matter the possible future issues, you can prepare yourself for success with these helpful things to ponder as a successful PM. Your employees and your future users will thank you, and you’ll sleep easier knowing that you avoided any problems that are able to be circumvented. Read more about these obstacles and the best ways to confront them here.#3: Jen Taylor of Cloudflare on Effective Product Launch PlanningPhoto by SpaceX on UnsplashProduct launches are quite possibly the most stressful moment in a product manager’s role. The culmination of months to years of hard work is finally ready to display to the world, and the ensuing public reaction will dictate much of a product’s future. Making sure that you have a good strategy for your product’s launch is of the utmost importance, so Kloudless was thrilled to be in the audience for Jen Taylor of Cloudflare’s talk at the Heavybit Devguild product marketing event; Ready For Lift-Off: Effective Product Launches was the culmination of Taylor’s years of experience in product marketing at companies like Salesforce, Adobe, and Facebook.From determining your type of product launch to planning the event itself, Taylor covers everything that a product manager needs to take into account when strategizing for the most effective way to launch their product. Read all about her insightful and helpful advice here.#4: Learn From Our Struggles: 4 API Pitfalls We Encountered While Building Our Unified APIs.As a product manager, a huge piece of your product roadmap will involve your API integrations. From determining the correct services to incorporate into your codebase, to choosing whether to embed or not, API integrations are a pivotal part of most modern codebases. Here at Kloudless, we specialize in API integrations and we’ve learned a thing or two (or 10,000) from the time we’ve spent developing our Unified APIs. In this helpful guide, we cover the pitfalls we encountered when building connections with four of our most popular API offerings: Dropbox, Google Drive, HubSpot, and SharePoint. Even if you aren’t integrating with any of these services specifically, these articles provide invaluable information to help your developers navigate the rocky path of incorporating API functionality into your application. Read all about the problems we encountered, and the tactics we took to solve them, here.When it’s all said and done, the key to being the best product manager you can rests squarely on your shoulders. We hope that you can glean as much as necessary from these helpful articles to aid you in your goal of long-term success for your product, but there will always be hard decisions and stumbles along the way. How you deal with that adversity is what separates the good product managers from the great ones. To ensure that your application is in the best possible position to succeed when it comes to API integrations, consider using Kloudless Unified APIs when beginning your product roadmap. By taking the pain of integrations out of your developers’ hands, you can make sure that your product won’t be hit with any unexpected integration problems, possibly forcing you to push back release dates or pivot on your functionality. You can save your team thousands of hours spent working on individual connections, and provide your users with every API they may need in one fell swoop. Because, at the end of the day, your developers should be working on your application’s own unique functionality, not toiling over documentation and troubleshooting integrations. To learn more about planning the entire lifecycle of your application, download our comprehensive new guide, Integrate For The Future: Kloudless’ Ultimate Strategy Guide for API Integrations, and get the integration strategy for your product roadmap primed for success!