RSS can be a valuable tool for Product Managers. It allows them to stay up to date on industry news and trends, track competitors, and better understand their customers. If you're new to RSS, then see my previous article: What is RSS and what are aggregators?
In the list below I summarize 10 benefits (if humans had 8 digits, I'd have only listed 8) for Product Managers.
1. Stay up to date with technology trends
RSS feeds can deliver the latest emerging technology trends to your RSS aggregator without having to scour the web. This can help you stay ahead of the curve and make you aware of new technologies that could be leveraged to improve your existing products—or enable entirely new products.
2. Identify new opportunities
RSS feeds can also be a great way to identify new opportunities. By reading about the latest news and trends in your industry, you can better identify industry-specific problems early, and therefore start the product discovery process before your competitors.
3. Monitor your competitors
RSS feeds can also be used to track your competitors' activities. This can help you identify new trends, see what features they're adding to their products, and get a sense of their overall strategy.
4. Understand your customers
RSS feeds can also be used to listen to your customers. By subscribing to your customers' websites, social media platforms, etc., you can get a sense of their needs and pain points, and better understand their future strategy. This information can be invaluable for making decisions about your product roadmap.
5. Know your tools
Subscribe to product blogs to be aware of the latest enhancements to tools often used by Product Managers, e.g., Microsoft 365, Jira, Confluence, Feedly, Aha!, Figma, etc. Some of these tools (Microsoft 365?) might also be the same tools that your customers use. Can your product take advantage of upcoming enhancements, e.g., integration with MS Teams?
6. Monitor the effect of your go-to-market activities
RSS can be used to monitor websites for any mention of recent go-to-market activities. Set up keyword search alerts related to the specific product (or product enhancement) you've launched and have any mentions delivered directly to your RSS aggregator.
7. Monitor any mentions of your product
It's always good practice to have keyword search alerts set up for your portfolio of products. Whenever one of your products is mentioned online (news, blogs, forums, etc.), you can be alerted via RSS. Many RSS aggregators will also make it easy to share this insight with your colleagues either via a custom RSS feed or via an email newsletter.
8. Monitor any mentions of your brand
Similar to №7, but for your brand. i.e., set keyword search alerts for any mention of your brand.
9. Add RSS to your products
RSS is not only a technology that can be used to make you a better Product Manager but also a technology that can be added to your products. Do you have a product blog? If so, does it support RSS? Do your products include a news or alerting feature? If so, can this be implemented via RSS?
10. Save time
It's possible that as a Product Manager, you're already doing many of the things listed above—but without the help of RSS. If so, then using RSS can save you a great deal of time. That's really the main benefit of RSS. Visiting multiple websites to check for updates is time-consuming and inefficient. Using RSS to have these updates delivered to you and made available in a single application is fast and efficient.