Marketing plays a vital role in the product or service development process.

Marketing knows:

  • Who else is making similar widgets;
  • How to differentiate the planned widget from all other widgets;
  • What the potential market is for the planned widget, and;
  • What the price should be.

These last two bullets are vital to ensure that the company can recover the widget development costs and then make a profit. As to differentiation from other widgets, Marketing should be part of all design reviews throughout the life of the widget to ensure that the development roadmap keeps at least one step ahead of the competition.

The alternative is a Dilbert-like organization where engineering develops a new product and then tosses it over the fence to marketing. Marketing and Sales are then supposed to sell something that is basically unsellable.