Carrie Zhang

Carrie ZhangShare

Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), Square
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Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareFebruary 2
Ha, organizational design questions are always the fun ones. :) These types of questions don’t have a right or wrong answer. Each design will have its pros and cons and it’s all about what you are trying to optimize. When I started in product marketing at Square, we reported into marketing. About 8 months later, we got spun off marketing and reported into product GMs. While I didn’t think that changed how I did my job - reflecting on the experience - I did feel some differences. While I was in marketing, I felt a lot closer and in sync with my channel and creative partners. On the other h...
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareFebruary 2
It’s a joint decision between product management and product marketing at Square. In general our PMMs tend to have more ownership here. They will lead competitive analysis and commission qual/ quant research to inform pricing decisions. That said, from what I observed, when you zoom into the specific PM/ PMM pair, it really comes down to whoever has the expertise and the respect from the team to make the right call.
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareFebruary 2
* Revenue, P&L ownership. * Customer discovery. Our PMs and designers tend to lead more qualitative research while our PMMs tend to lead more quantitative surveys. * Product strategy. At Square, PM is the ultimate DRI (Directly Responsible Individual). * Pricing and packaging. At Square, PMM is the ultimate DRI.
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareFebruary 2
* It’s a good idea to try internal transfer if you want to transition from PMM to PM, or vice versa. Learning the craft of a new discipline is not easy. You are more likely to set yourself up for success if you minimize other variables like new company, new product, new team. * Anchor on your strength. There are many transferable skills between the two disciplines, e.g., customer discovery, data analytics, communication and influencing skills. Leverage your strength in the new role and you will find it easier to get early wins and build confidence in yourself. * But def...
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareFebruary 2
From the very beginning and throughout the development process. This is very much related to the previous question. I will try to bring to life how the process works on the Square teams. * For any new feature development, we hold a kickoff/ problem alignment with PM, PMM, Design, Eng and Data Science. The goal is to align on the customer problem, generate hypotheses, identify open questions that need further investigation. From there, PM, PMM, and Design may divide and conquer customer research tasks. * Once the team is aligned on this is the right problem to solve and the r...
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareFebruary 2
Good question. I view product management and product marketing as close partners since we co-own the strategy and business outcome. Cannot say I have best practices, rather some guiding principles of how I would like to see us work together. 1. Involve each other early. I hate the model where the product team does a hard handoff to product marketing only when the product/ feature is ready to launch. PM, PMM, as well as other disciplines like Design, Engineering, and Data Science all bring unique perspectives to problem solving. You are much better off involving each other ...
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareFebruary 2
The product manager (PM) decides “what” to build and “when”, and is accountable for delivering the product or feature that delights customers. The product marketer (PMM) informs “what” to build, and is accountable for driving the demand for what has been built. Both require deep customer and market insights. Both need to think strategically about how to differentiate your product in your space. The difference lies in execution. On a day-to-day basis, the PM works very closely with designers and engineers to discover, design, scope, and implement what needs to be built. You are much more f...
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareJune 30
Any interviews with me will involve a case - real world, but sanitized case questions like "you are the PMM for xyz product and your subscriber growth has slowed down [insert whatever metrics, scenarios] in the last 2 quarters. You need to get it back on track. What would you do to tackle this?" I look for ability to break down a problem, identify hypotheses, look for right data/ fact base to validate hypotheses and creative ideas to solve a problem. My best tip is to not jump into answering the question right away. Take 30-60s to structure your thinking first.
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareJanuary 15
Think about it the other way. PMM is one of the most cross-functional roles in a company. You are essentially quarterbacking the entire go-to-market efforts. The leadership qualities required to motivate people who don't report to you is arguably more challenging than direct people management. While people management doesn't come easy in this function, there are plenty of opportunities to hone leadership skills.
Carrie Zhang
Carrie Zhang
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing), SquareJanuary 6
Agree with Mike! PMM needs to be part of the roadmap development process. Most companies do annual planning. So you should know where you are taking the product to in the next year. Then, what are the quarterly feature release roadmaps.
Credentials & Highlights
Product Lead (fmr Head of Product Marketing) at Square
Product Management AMA Contributor
Product Marketing AMA Contributor
Top 10 Product Management Contributor
Lives In Redwood City, California
Knows About Consumer Product Marketing, Building a Product Marketing Team, Establishing Product M...more
Work With Carrie
Product Marketing Manager, Team Management
San Francisco, CA or Remote - US
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