10 thing you need to stop saying because you sound like PLM marketing robot

10 thing you need to stop saying because you sound like PLM marketing robot


The old joke says you can take any word from a terminological lexicon of manufacturing company and turn it into enterprise software. Just add “management” word… Product portfolio (management), Engineering change (management), Engineering document (management), Cost (management), Quality (management), Material requirement (management), etc…

The reason for that is simple. After all, engineering and manufacturing companies are doing about the same. As a result of that, marketing of such solution is a tough job. Engineering software and, especially, product lifecycle management is known to be complex to market.

You cannot avoid that. Businesses are using marketing to help capture market, introduce new product to existing and new customers and help moving sales forward. There are plenty of marketing tactics you can use – social media, TV, public relationships and others. Marketing can be very powerful. However, to make it sound right, you company should be think about development its own content. Good copyright person is hard to find.

I’m not a marketing person by any means. However, after watching and reading marketing materials about product lifecycle management for a long time, I decided to come with some ideas about things you better avoid to say in your marketing materials when you speak about PLM. Here is my top 10 list:

1. Industry proven PLM system

What you actually want to say – we have customers. So, just say that.

2. Easy to use user interface

The time of complex solutions are over. Nobody want to develop complex user interface. And I haven’t seen somebody who wants to say “our system is complex to use”. So just make your user interface simple…

3. Ready to use PLM

The main complexity of PLM use is coming from organization and not from product and technology. So, every PLM system is ready to use if company is ready to use it without any implementation, configuration and customization (if needed). And it is ready to use only when your company processes and PLM system implementation are aligned.

4. Out-of-the-box PLM configurations

Same as above. Every system has some out-of-the box configuration. These configuration can present well what system is capable to do, but almost never can be used by company in a production mode.

5. Flexible PLM

Because of what I said above about configuration and customization, flexibility is one of the key requirements for any system. And believe me, nobody want to say that his system is inflexible.

6. Fully configurable

Same as “flexible”, system is either configurable or not. Have you heard about “Not fully configurable systems”? So, just say you can configure the system.

7. Fully customizable

Same as above.

8. Fully integrated

The demand of enterprise customers is to integrate PLM system into the existing environment and connect with other systems – CRM, ERP, MES, etc. But, to integrate system takes time and resources. What  you want to say is that you can do do and the system has enough tools to support it.

9. Immersive CAD integration

Same as above about “fully integrated”. What you want to say is that you system supports integration and can be used inside CAD user interface.

10. De-facto industry standards

What you really want to say is that many customers are using your system and it is well-known. So, just say that.

What is my conclusion? I’m sure missed few words. So, what words do you think we need to stop using in PLM marketing? Comment or tweet and let me know. Simplicity is the biggest power. Companies are tired from complex solution and sophisticated marketing words. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

Want to learn more about PLM? Check out my new PLM Book website.

Disclaimer: I’m co-founder and CEO of openBoM developing cloud based bill of materials and inventory management tool for manufacturing companies, hardware startups and supply chain. My opinion can be unintentionally biased.


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  • Loïc Mouchard

    Hi Oleg,
    for your point 8 (fully integrated), you could use the term of Openness (see CPO= Code of the PLM Openness) http://www.prostep.org/de/cpo.html

    Nothing about the Total Cost of Ownership or ROI?


  • Eric Milgram

    As always, a great post!

  • beyondplm

    Eric, thank you!

  • beyondplm

    Loïc, thank you for your comment! Yeah… maybe “Low TCO” and “Fast ROI”. But at least these things can be quantified. So, it is not as bad.

  • Accacia_75

    Excellent article very straight! However here is a lot of considerations for the PLM mayhem on the market. First , if you ask to an Plm architect what is a data usable by PLM and who are the others, you will get confused explainations. Then clients don’t know that PLM mammoths spend 70% of their software costs for rationalization and simplification , very few to innovation and when they have no functionnalities in , they buy companies!
    What about augmented reality for exemple? A Chinese software and research are working for an augmented CAD including a PLM templates ready for use. For me this is the killer!!
    So far to DS and others!!!!!!

  • beyondplm

    It is harder to disrupt (or kill) a products(s) that it seems. Especially if product has market, users and it is profitable. So, what is the “augmented CAD”? I never heard about the term.

  • Accacia_75

    Augmented Cad is a concept to design any part in 3D Live with augmented reality environment. I was lucky to assist a demo in China with an example: 4 cameras tracking a car ( Honda) inreal time and with a software combined to a tracker I saw all the dimensions displayed. Then after the activation of the 3D appli, you can change the shape , everything you want to create your model , but also to be compared to the real one . In the same time, you can allow datas for manufacturing , computation, analysis , and also cost of the model to SAP.

  • beyondplm

    Sounds very cool. Do you have any links to share?
    It reminded me an old Microsoft vision video