Adventures in Messaging

#30 | Jason Gatoff, Pendo

#30 | Jason Gatoff, Pendo

#30 | Jason Gatoff, PendoIt feels like every startup wants to create a new category.  Category creation has become the holy grail — but it’s not the only way to win. Differentiating your company within an emerging category can be just as powerful. (And it’s not all on...

#29 | Jiong Liu, Okta

#29 | Jiong Liu, Okta

#29 | Jiong Liu, OktaSometimes product marketers have to launch a little early. Sometimes they have to launch a LOT early 🙂  So how do you create a positioning and messaging strategy for a product that isn’t fully formed or completely understood? When you haven’t got...

#28 | Jordan Greene, Outreach

#28 | Jordan Greene, Outreach

#28 | Jordan Greene, OutreachNot enough people talk about using your intuition during messaging development. Because it’s a total secret weapon. The best product marketing teams have a gut sense about which messages will land with their customers, resulting in...

#27 | April Rassa, HackerOne

#27 | April Rassa, HackerOne

#27 | April Rassa, HackerOneHow do you bridge the gap between your product today and the vision for tomorrow? Pretty much every high-growth startup faces this messaging challenge: striking the balance between “what is” vs “what could be.” Luckily, awesome marketing...

#26 | Jarod Greene, Highspot

#26 | Jarod Greene, Highspot

#26 | Jarod Greene, HighspotIn so many ways, messaging doesn’t belong to your company. It belongs to your customer. Your buyer. And the companies who get closest to the customer — and use their insights and language to help guide messaging strategy — are the ones who...

#25 | Jack Wei, SmartRecruiters

#25 | Jack Wei, SmartRecruiters

#25 | Jack Wei, SmartRecruitersWhen writing messaging, the natural reflex is to start with what’s so great about your product. (Especially when you know how amazing it is.) The trick is to consciously step back and start with the bigger picture. Why does your product...

#24 | Christine Sotelo-Dag, Intercom

#24 | Christine Sotelo-Dag, Intercom

#24 | Christine Sotelo-Dag, IntercomThe secret to messaging that resonates? Start with empathy, not features. Before you put pen to paper, make sure you truly understand your customer’s challenges, aspirations and feelings.  That’s how you find the emotive hook to...

#23 | Peep Laja, Wynter

#23 | Peep Laja, Wynter

#23 | Peep Laja, WynterA CEO once told me he stayed awake at night wondering how many ideal prospects visited his site, struggled to understand what his company could do for them, and bounced for good...never to return.   As marketers, we can all relate to that fear:...

#22 | Jeff Beckham, Mixpanel

#22 | Jeff Beckham, Mixpanel

#22 | Jeff Beckham, MixpanelThis may sound like heresy, but there are times when speaking to high-level business value isn’t necessarily the best way to go. Like when your buyer isn’t responsible for those top-level business metrics. Or when messages like “reduce...

#21 | Caroline Walthall, Quizlet

#21 | Caroline Walthall, Quizlet

#21 | Caroline Walthall, QuizletProduct Marketers face the challenge of finding the perfect balance for their messaging, identifying which details illuminate the message and which ones just create extra noise.  Caroline Walthall, Head of Product Marketing at Quizlet,...

#20 | Derek Frome, Ouster

#20 | Derek Frome, Ouster

#20 | Derek Frome, OusterWhen it comes to category creation, success lies in intimately knowing your product and the market, and then getting creative with that knowledge. In this episode of Adventures in Messaging, Derek Frome, Head of Marketing at Ouster, will get...

#19 | Jason Perocho, Braze

#19 | Jason Perocho, Braze

#19 | Jason Perocho, BrazeFinding your product’s unique space in the marketplace is everything. That’s why positioning and category definition are two of the most important (and juiciest!) things a product marketer can do. And if you want to do it right, you gotta...

#18 | Kevin Garcia, Retool

#18 | Kevin Garcia, Retool

#18 | Kevin Garcia, Retool Research does more than just inform product positioning and messaging — it helps build conviction around how to move forward as a company. The key is to ask specific and nuanced questions; listen to what the research is telling you; and...

#17 | Andrew Stinger, Coda

#17 | Andrew Stinger, Coda

#17 | Andrew Stinger, Coda“Your job communicating isn’t done until you’ve been understood.” Words. To. Live. By. 🙌 Just because you’ve put a message out there to your team — on a deck, a doc, an email — doesn’t mean you’ve effectively communicated the idea.  You have...

#16 | Indy Sen, Matterport

#16 | Indy Sen, Matterport

#16 | Indy Sen, MatterportMessaging should be like an API inside your company – a living, breathing narrative that any team or region can plug into and get what they need.  That’s how messaging becomes a multiplier inside an organization. Indy Sen, VP Product...

#15 | Mary Sheehan, Adobe

#15 | Mary Sheehan, Adobe

#15 | Mary Sheehan, AbobeSo much goes into creating new positioning and messaging.  You have to decide who you want to be as a company. You have to get alignment across different teams. You have to understand what your customers think. Then you have to find the right...

#14 | JD Prater, AWS

#14 | JD Prater, AWS

#14 | JD Prater, AWSIt’s one thing to get asked to position and message a small new feature.  But what do you do when the CRO asks you to lead the charge on new positioning, messaging and competitive differentiation for the entire company? In your first few months on...

#13 | Savita Kini, Cisco

#13 | Savita Kini, Cisco

#13 | Savita Kini, CiscoAt what stage of product development should product marketing be brought in?  When should you start creating and testing messaging for a new product? Savita Kini, Director of Product Marketing at Speech A, Cisco, has worked in engineering and...

#12 | Daniel Palay, SignEasy

#12 | Daniel Palay, SignEasy

#12 | Daniel Palay, SignEasyThe best messaging gets into your buyer’s head. It connects the dots between their world and your product. Personas can help you get there. But not if you retrofit them into your own product narrative. In this episode, Daniel Palay, Head of...

#11 | Judy Abad

#11 | Judy Abad

#11 | Judy AbadWith spells at WhatsApp, Slack, Instagram and Facebook, Judy Abad’s resume reads like an iPhone home screen. 😉 She knows what serious demand feels like — the twists, the turns, the thrills — and it’s given her a unique perspective on taking popular...

#10 | Jeffrey Vocell, Iterable

#10 | Jeffrey Vocell, Iterable

#10 | Jeffrey Vocell, IterableEvery product launch has to land. The stakes are high for product marketers and the pressure is real.  That’s when you REALLY want messaging research in your corner saying: “We prepared for this. We got this!” Because without...

#9 | Sarah Din, Unbabel

#9 | Sarah Din, Unbabel

#9 | Sarah Din, UnbabelSubjectivity bleeds into a lot of messaging development.  “I don’t like this word.”“I think we should say this instead.”“What about ‘accelerate growth’?” Opinions are everywhere. And while they’re valuable, they can also derail the process that...

#8 | Jon Rooney, Oracle

#8 | Jon Rooney, Oracle

#8 | Jon Rooney, OracleThink of messaging as draft and hypothesis. Something to stress test and poke holes in. Something to iterate and add rigor to. Not something to just fall in love with inside the building. “It's a discipline. It’s not ad hoc. It's not a fire...

#7 | Michael Peach, Tray.io

#7 | Michael Peach, Tray.io

#7 | Michael Peach, Tray.ioCreating a cohesive, overarching story for a product with different audiences and use cases can be tough. It’s a challenge that many product marketers face. But there’s always an answer...and it often lies in your customer's mind. In this...

#6 | Diana Smith, Twilio.org

#6 | Diana Smith, Twilio.org

#6 | Diana Smith, Twilio.orgIt’s easy to think you know how to talk to your customer. But are you using the same words they use? Are you highlighting the same problems they discuss? Are you truly empathizing with their situation? The words you use have the power to...

#5 | Steve Feyer, Eightfold.ai

#5 | Steve Feyer, Eightfold.ai

#5 | Steve Feyer, Eightfold.aiIt’s easy to play it safe with messaging and say what everyone else is saying. (LOTS of companies do it.) But safe messaging gets ignored.  If you want to grab people’s attention, your messaging needs to go out on a limb and say something...

#4 | Kristen Ribero, Handshake

#4 | Kristen Ribero, Handshake

#4 | Kristen Ribero, HandshakeThere are many things to learn about messaging: value props, product pillars, proof points, etc. But the secret to great messaging isn’t in a framework. It’s about keeping it real and simple for your customers. In this episode of...

#3 | Ajit Ghuman, Narvar

#3 | Ajit Ghuman, Narvar

#3 | Ajit Ghuman, NarvarYou’d think a solid ROI calculator could convince people to buy. But most purchases aren’t based on rational facts and figures – they’re based on how your prospect feels. That’s why pathos – evoking emotions in your audience – is a key part of...

#2 | Sarah Lambert, Oracle

#2 | Sarah Lambert, Oracle

#2 | Sarah Lambert, Oracle Talking to your customers about their challenges – and diving deep into how they make them feel – is an incredible way to test your messaging. The key is to be subtle about the testing part. In this episode of Adventures In Messaging, Sarah...

#1 | Francisco T. Bram, Uber Eats

#1 | Francisco T. Bram, Uber Eats

#1 | Francisco T. Bram, Uber EatsGreat product narratives are never about the product. They're always about the audience. How the product makes them feel. How it makes them act and react. How their lives will be improved, thanks to your solution. These are the real...