All related (33)
Jenna Crane
Senior Director of Product Marketing at Klaviyo | Formerly Drift, Dropbox, Upwork
I think the best product marketing candidates — and product marketers — have one thing in common: empathy. Empathy helps you understand where others are coming from, and that is the foundation of great messaging & positioning as well as great collaboration.  If you can put yourselves in your customers' and prospects' shoes — what they care about, their needs and pain points, what success looks like to them, their emotional state at different phases of the customer journey, etc. — you are halfway to creating great messaging.  And if you can put yourselves in the shoes of your cross-functio...more
Kevin Garcia
Head of Product Marketing at Retool
In my mind, the best performing product marketers exhibit three must-have skills: 1. Research 2. Storytelling 3. Project management To expand on each: 1. The instinct and ability to research, talk to customers, and analyze data to find new insights 2. The ability to combine insights + product features into stories that resonate with your audience 3. The drive and cross-functional skills to work across any internal scenario to drive external results In my experience, folks with (1) and (2) but not (3) tend to be really thoughtful and analytical, but have a harder time c...more
Daniel Kuperman
Head of Product Marketing, ITSM at Atlassian
That's an especially important question for PMM leaders today. There are a few key components to pay attention to: - Compensation - Work - Growth First is to ensure your people are being paid fairly. This means always keeping an eye on the market rate for people on your team and whether they are below, above, or in the middle range for the base pay. At larger companies, your HR team will be able to provide that, but at smaller companies and startups, you'll have to do some research using third-party sites like Glassdoor, Salary.com, Payscale.com, and others. If you spot someone on you...more
Jack Wei
Head of Product Marketing at Sendbird | Formerly SmartRecruiters, Mixpanel, Deloitte
My answer spans the top hard + soft skills: * Hard: Well-rounded across words and numbers. You often hear that PMMs have to be strong storytellers (framing, positioning, mesaging, writing), but the highest-performing and highest-potential PMMs I've worked with are also very analytical and comfortable with some number crunching. In the B2B space, in particular, backing up any story with inspiring message, facts, and data will do wonders.  * Soft: Empathy and stakeholder management. Someone who can put others first and put him/herself in another's shoes. You often hear th...more
Christine Sotelo-Dag
Group Product Marketing Manager at Intercom

From my hiring experience there are typically there are a few key characteristics and examples I look out for

  • Has to be a great storyteller - go beyond writing copy, and able to craft narratives
  • Ability to take complex topics and translate them into value
  • Customer-centric 
  • Cross-functional / team players 
  • Organized, ability to prioirtize and pull together disperate workstreams 
Patrick Cuttica
Senior Product Marketing Manager at Square
This depends heavily on the make-up of your company and your product portfolio. Early on, I thought of our team as product marketing generalists. Each PMM covered a wide range of responsibilites tied to the commercialization of our product straetgy including: core product positioning, product launches and release management, various sales enablement efforts, assisting with in-app copywriting, executing internal product enablement (technical trainings, demo environment, etc.). Over time, we began to further specialize.  I think the key is understanding the core needs of your main stakehol...more
Andrew Stinger
Product & Company Marketing Lead at Coda
I’m always wary of painting with too broad a brushstroke when it comes to hiring. Your job as a hiring manager is to spend time understand the super powers of the people you meet as part of your interview process, and to evaluate if those super powers have a place at your company. With that in mind and the current context of our work at Coda, I can share some commonalities in some of our recent all-star hires: 1. Curiosity with the intrinsic motivation to go find answers (vs. letting questions persist indefinitely or waiting for an answer to be handed on a silver platter) 2. A...more
Rekha Srivatsan
VP of Product Marketing at Salesforce
I don't care about the candidate's background when interviewing for my team. I've hired folks from engineering, solution engineering, sales, and customer success teams and they've become successful PMMs. That being said, most of them have this in common:  * Can-do and flexible attitude - Ready to take on any challenge. Open to solving it creatively and however long it takes to wrap it up.  * Connecting the dots - Instead of being siloed as just a PMM, thinking about the adjacent functions like campaigns / content / GTM teams and how to involve them. * Good copywriting skills - ...more
Sara Rosso
Director of Product Marketing at HubSpot | Formerly Early hire @ Automattic (WordPress.com, WordPress VIP)
As a fully distributed / remote company, we operate slightly uniquely than other companies - the two biggest differences are 1) we don't use email and 2) everything by default is public to the entire company. Instead of email, we publish everything on our intranet, which is naturally powered by WordPress, and it's also public to the entire company. The intranet is essentially hundreds of WordPress(.com) sites, which we call P2s after the theme they run. P2 is available for anyone to use https://p2theme.com/ and the design enables easier front-end posting & inline commenting, so it's less o...more
Sarah Din
VP of Marketing at Builder.io
I love this question because in my experience I have hired PMMs from a variety of backgrounds, including people that have had no direct PMM experience, but they all had the right aptitude for the role. Depends on the level of seniority you are looking for OR the kind of product you have, you might have specific technical skills you require. In my opinion, technical skills can often be learned on the job, but there are a few more “softer skills” that cannot. Here is what I always look for: * The ability to think strategically. Be able to see the bigger picture, and the long-term vision....more
Tiffany Tooley
Head of Product Marketing at Hubspot | Formerly Salesforce, IBM, Silverpop, Blackboard
I've done a lot of interviews and hiring over the years and I'm constantly impressed by how smart and driven Product Marketers are! It's one of the things that makes interviewing so much fun - you get an opportunity to talk to and learn from the best of the best. That said, I think there are a few things that really stand out for me, and they are: * Curiosity - Most candidates are well-educated and skilled, so it's the folks with humility and a curiosity to learn that really shine during the interview process and on my team * Customer-First - Candidates with deep empathy for the cu...more
Sarah Din
VP of Marketing at Builder.io
This is a question I get a LOT. Everyone wants to know whats the idea PMM team structure. The short answer is there isn't one. Firstly, the role of a PMM looks different in every company. Secondly, the role of a PMM is not static. The role should evolve based on business priorities. So while you may structure the team a particular way today, know that you might need to change that structure a year from now if your priorities shift, especially at a start-up where things change quickly. Here are a few things to keep in mind though: * Look at the ratio of PM to PMM as a starting point, es...more
Abdul Rastagar
GTM Leader | Marketing Author | Career Coach

The ‘product marketing skills’ question has been answered really well by a lot of others on Sharebird already so I will focus my answer specifically to the interview itself: 


I always look for candidates who have a strategic mindset and who can articulate what success in their current role looks like. I interviewed one candidate once who really impressed me with her ability to paint ‘before and after’ pictures. It’s less common than you would expect and she completely differentiated herself because of it.

Jason Garoutte
Growth at (sabbatical) | Formerly Salesforce, Twilio, Blue Martini
I have some data here. For years, I used "candidate fit tests" (offered by Pittari.io). It's like Myers-Briggs but focused on workplace style & drivers. For successful PMMs, I noticed a pattern. When it comes to workplace style, PMMs scored highly for "commanding" and "outgoing", favoring an "easygoing" style more than "exactlng". In other words, they like to enage with people and push conversations forward, but they're still flexible in groups. Then, across 7 possible drivers, PMMs scored highest on creativity and altruism. This makes a lot of sense for positioning work, and "atruism" echo...more
Grant Shirk
Head of Product Marketing, Cisco Meraki at Cisco | Formerly Tellme Networks, Microsoft, Box, Vera, Scout RFP, and Sisu Data, to name a few.
This is what makes PMM so fun. And also a little chaotic. You're frequently context-shifting between strategic investments (a 12- to 18-month horizon), quarterly operational work (those "big rocks" and Tier 1 launches), and the daily/weekly/monthly execution below the scenes. And then a competitor (or new entrant) does something you have to react to. Engage competitive skillsets! I've found the best way to manage through this is through a few tools: 1. Clearly establish what your high-impact priorities are. And then communicate them until you're blue in the face and sick of hear...more
Abdul Rastagar
GTM Leader | Marketing Author | Career Coach

If I understand the question correctly, you want to know if the candidate is an independent self-starter or requires more in-depth guidance and direction. Is that correct?

I would ask him/her what they consider to be a successful start to their new role and what their 30-60-90 day plan is to help them achieve that. An independent self-starter will probably have thought through some of that already.