Customer Equity Accelerator Podcast

Ep. 27 | Customer Centric Product Development with Twitch’s June Dershewitz

Are product-centric organizations tone-deaf to customer needs and desires? How can you balance the two? June Dershewitz, Director of Analytics at Twitch (an Amazon company), explains how these mindsets are not mutually exclusive and when combined, can be incredibly powerful in driving both the bottom line and customer happiness. She offers three steps to take to adopt a similar approach, starting with setting clear, quantifiable goals, ensuring a balance between product- and customer-centric approaches to align everything with the company’s core values, and using data at each step in the innovation cycle to ensure product optimization. See the full transcriptView all episodes.


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Ep. 28 | What CAOs are Thinking Now with Allison Hartsoe Ep. 26 | Secrets of Today’s Marketing Leaders with Laura Beaudin


Show Transcript

Allison Hartsoe - 00:03 - This Customer Equity Accelerator, a weekly show for marketing executives who need to accelerate customer-centric thinking and digital maturity. I'm your host, Allison Hartsoe of Ambition Data. This show features innovative guests who share quick wins on how to improve your bottom line while creating happier, more valuable customers. Ready to accelerate. Let's go.

Welcome, everyone. Today's show is about customer-centric product development. And to help me discuss this topic is June Dershewitz, June is the director of analytics at Twitch, which is now an Amazon company and I think personally she's soon to be a chief data officer somewhere. She's so amazing and certainly someone I've known for a very long time. June, welcome to the show.

June Dershewitz - 00:58 - Well Allison, thank you so much for having me.

Allison Hartsoe - 01:01 - So now customer-centric product development. This is a, you know, for people who are really, really hot and heavy on CLV, they uh, they often understand that there's an application into product development, but driving product development might seem a little bit like an oxymoron. Can you tell us a little bit more about your background and how you kind of got to this topic? How did you make the connection? Where did you start?

June Dershewitz - 01:30 - It starts with having a background in math and numbers and data always interested me. I've been in the field of data and analytics my entire career, so about 20 years and I've been here in the San Francisco Bay area helping companies as a practitioner and at times as a consultant make the best use of their data, and to me, the best use of their data means two things. It means using that data to improve business outcomes and keeping a business competitive in the market. And the second is keeping customers happy, making a great experience for our customers using data and if we're doing both of those things, I think we're doing a great job of using our data.

Allison Hartsoe - 02:09 - Oh, that's fantastic. So mathy background that makes sense and improving outcomes and keeping customers happy. But was there a particular path that you said, oh my God, this is the light bulb I have to be doing analytics. What part of your background made it feel like it was all gonna come together?

June Dershewitz - 02:29 - I fell into it. Honestly. Other people saw that in me when I first entered the job market, I thought I wanted to be a front-end developer because I wanted to use my technical skills, but people looked at my background, my interest in understanding the customer combined with technical knowledge about data and databases and they said we think you'd make a good analyst and I gave that a shot and I stuck with it over time, over a long period of time and I've gone back and forth between the technical side and the side. I'm on the business side now, and I strongly prefer that, but for me, it's just always been that curiosity about what makes a customer tick combined with deep knowledge about the data that drives the business.

Allison Hartsoe - 03:14 - Oh, I love that, and that makes sense, and it certainly was the right place and the right time to be getting the analytics will tell us a little bit more about what your team does or what you specifically do on a day to day basis.

June Dershewitz - 03:27 - Sure. So I am currently at Twitch and Amazon company. I've been there for two and a half years. When I joined, I was one of the founding members of a team that I'm still on the covers all things data, so that's qualitative and quantitative research, so data science, audience research, user experience research as well as the round that I have direct control over, which is analytics, business intelligence, and data governance and it's been an exciting ride. I'm really interested in helping growing companies develop new capabilities, and I've certainly gotten the chance to do that over the past couple of years as Twitch has more than tripled in size in terms of its employee base.

Allison Hartsoe - 04:12 - Wow. Wow. Is that a call for if you're interested in, you're looking for work. Oh, we're hiring.

June Dershewitz - 04:18 - We're definitely hiring

Allison Hartsoe - 04:22 - Awesome. Alright, so let's dig into customer-centric product development. So I guess the question here is product-centric organizations seem to operate a little bit differently than customer centric, and when we do the simulation which you participated in at the conference recently, there's a big push about customer-centric thinking versus product-centric thinking. How does one balance or how does one bring the customer into product development?

June Dershewitz - 04:52 - I don't think they need to be mutually exclusive mindsets and that was something that I spoke to others about at that conference who were concerned with maybe a more traditional view on a product-centric business where you might be not acknowledging customer needs as much as you should when you develop your products where you're more like developing products for the purpose of developing the product, but I think that it can be a really powerful combination to be at a company that places product innovation and product development at the center of its business, but is also incredibly customer focused because I think any great product team and product managers in particular need to know their customer and acknowledged customer needs as they're developing their products and if all goes well, then the thing that you build as a product should benefit the customer, acknowledge their needs and also benefit the business and its bottom line.

Allison Hartsoe - 05:53 - Okay. Yeah. I mean, I think no one would disagree with the idea that if you're going to build a product, you have to be able to understand the customer, but the customer lifetime value philosophy or the customer-centric philosophy generally talks about leading with the classification of customers, so a product that's built to solve for every customer's need would be a product-centric approach and a product built to solve for high value or a medium value or even low-value customer needs would be customer-centric approach. Can you talk a little bit more about how that combination can work together? Are there tradeoffs that you have to make when people are like, no, this is the way I think it should go, but I don't have anything to back it up. How do you really wrestle those two animals together?

June Dershewitz - 06:41 - I think it's especially important to consider in the product research phase because at that point in time when you're thinking about product ideas and the kinds of things that you want to make an investment in as a company in terms of product, you need to consider the audience that each of those hypothetical products is addressing the audience and audience needs and ideally you should also be considering the lifetime value of each of the customer groups whose needs are met by those products and use that to prioritize the things that you actually go and build.

Allison Hartsoe - 07:14 - Got it. Got it. So

June Dershewitz - 07:15 - thinking about that upfront and thinking about that in particular with audience research on having a well-formed strategy to say these are the customer groups we're targeting and that we want to build a product for is a powerful combination.

Allison Hartsoe - 07:29 - So that really gets into that optimization loop, but it always drives me bonkers when people say, oh, it's a funnel. I'm going to chase my customers through a funnel. But what you've really said there is that the back end of the funnel or the loop is driving the audience research. That then feeds into the next version of the product that the back end's driving the front end. Is that right?

June Dershewitz - 07:51 - Yeah.

Allison Hartsoe - 07:52 - Okay. Well, that makes sense, and that seems like a good reason to care about product development and just for folks who don't do product development on an everyday basis, what are the elements that typically go into product development? You've talked about audience research. Are there other elements that would typically feed in?

June Dershewitz - 08:10 - Sure. Well, I think of in my mind, I think of it as three main stages. The first is the early stage that we just talked about, which is product research and innovation, where you kind of ideating on the kinds of things that you might do. The second of the three is product development where you're actually building a plan for the product that you want to produce and thinking about what success looks like and how you're going to measure that and then actually building the thing. And the third and final stage, I would say is once that product is released into the wild and is used by your customers, making sure that you understand where it's working and where it's not, and how to optimize it to make it better over time.

Allison Hartsoe - 08:53 - Is there a stage that you find people spend too little time in or a stage that they may be focused too heavily on?

June Dershewitz - 09:02 - Well, I'm a data person, so I'm always going to say that there's never enough time to one thing through clearly what the measures of business success are. Once you've settled on maybe a wireframe for a product and then instrument it, right? Because you can't. Instruments are until it's very close to launching and I'm very close to launching. There's a lot of pressure built up to actually go and launch the thing, but I think one thing that's really important for product managers to acknowledge in concert with the data people that they work with is that being able to understand what constitutes product success and to be able to quantify that on launch is not a nice to have. It's essential. And so on day one of the launch, you should already be able to understand how your product is performing so you can measure it over time

Allison Hartsoe - 09:54 - Oh nice.

June Dershewitz - 09:55 - and that's the part that like there have been cases where if there's one thing that gets cut before launch, it's like, oh, we don't have to have the data about. And yes you do. You need to have that data. But I think the mindset shifting.

Allison Hartsoe - 10:06 - Yeah. Yeah. So you've planned already with your measures of success, and I assume that probably means there's action behind it. If x then y is, is that how it logically fits in? How does it work at Twitch,

June Dershewitz - 10:18 - the action behind it? Could you clarify that a little bit?

Allison Hartsoe - 10:21 - Yeah. So if I measure success and I've done my research and that I've launched a product and I've got certain measures of success, part of that should also entail if something is happening, if x is happening, then what result do I see on the other side? The ability to pull the lever more or less. Do you see that happening right after the launch? Where in the Twitch environment, a product comes out, you've got your measures of success and then there's a sense of accountability and responsibility to take those actions.

June Dershewitz - 10:54 - Right? Well, I think that's where iterative improvement and the optimization of the product comes in. Right? You certainly can and should make some predictions about what you think the outcome will be when you launch a product, but then once you actually do want to, it's important to compare the reality to the predictions that you set about what you thought would happen and then tailor your followups accordingly. It could be that you were wrong about what you thought would happen and I need to pivot, and that's fine as long as you've learned something from that exercise.

Allison Hartsoe - 11:28 - Got it. Got it. When we were talking the other day, you mentioned this pattern of the five why's, which I thought was intuitive and obvious in such a great way to diagnose what you learn. Can you talk through that for just a second,

June Dershewitz - 11:42 - so Twitch among other things has a strong culture of conducting postmortems and postmortems, postmortems happen when you've had some kind of failure? In a company, it could be a technical failure, or it could be a business failure, and you bring together people to reflect on what happened and to isolate that down to the root cause so you can make sure that you're protected from happening again, and you understand what exactly went wrong. So the five whys are essentially a series of questions that you ask about the thing that failed. So if he says, I want you to the product, and it didn't get the adoption that I expected upfront, well why? Well, maybe we hadn't fully thought through who the right audience was for that product that we had made in concepts. Well, why? You know, you continue. And so eventually after five of those why questions, you get to the heart of the thing that went wrong so that you can course correct in the future and there's no judgment there. It's not like you're placing blame on a person for having failed. Rather, it's about learning from that as an organization so they don't make the same mistakes over and over and it's really valuable.

Allison Hartsoe - 12:50 - Got it. Got it. Right into the framework that you mentioned, the optimization of your existing product. That's a nice piece. Okay, so let's say I understand why this is important. Are there examples that you can talk us through about how this product-centric customer-centric focus or let's call it customer-centric led product management is probably a better way to say it. How was this execute at Twitch?

June Dershewitz - 13:18 - Sure. Let me give you one specific example of how we've applied it here. For those who don't know, Twitch is a live streaming video platform in a social community for gamers. So cool. Watching people play video games, which is the thing. It is very popular as you can imagine with live streaming video of any time. We have a lot of user-generated content and so one of the big challenges that we face as a business is connecting our customers with content that we think they want to watch and we think about as a product area called discovery. Right? So that a portion of our product is just like helping our customers find the right content that they're gonna like and I think it's a really nice of customer centricity and Org. The values of the product quite a bit. Showing people the right things. Right. And so when our product awhile that was a little bit less developed, and we were looking for simple things that we could do to the product to improve discovery.

June Dershewitz - 14:17 - And the one kind of most simple untapped area was using recency. So if someone comes and uses our product and they watched some video the next time they come back, why don't we show them the games and the streams that they watched most recently as recommendations from what they might want watch in the future. And that's simple. It doesn't require that they're logged in and just requires that we know a little bit about their past behavior and we didn't have this built into our product. And so we rolled this out as a test to see if it would stick. And what we found is that when we presented returning customers with the content they had watched recently as something they might want to watch again in the future, we got a one percent lift in our primary engagement metric, which is minutes watched of video content. So for us, I mean that might seem like a small number, but with the huge volume that we have at twitch, it was really substantial, and it was one of our most successful product changes of that year, and I thought it was great at acknowledging the customer needs, how can we help customers discover great content?

June Dershewitz - 15:20 - And it was also good at driving business success. It led to a measurable lift in our primary business metric. And that was a product change, right? It was a product change, but it was based on customer need, and these were returning customers. So in our mind that they were high-value customers, to begin with.

Allison Hartsoe - 15:36 - Yeah. I was just thinking about that because I think there's usually a strong correlation between and especially in Twitch's business model where your primary business metric is about minutes watched. It's usually a strong correlation between how engaged somebody is, what kind of actions they're taking, how often they come back and their value to you as a customer. Now it's not, you know, it's not a hard and fast rule, but there's generally a pretty good correlation. Now, of course with Twitch, your product is online. The minutes watched is the metric. It's not like I'm shopping around trying to find something, although you probably look at that too so I can see the customer lifetime value aspect feeding in here, so even though when you're talking about discovery and finding what to watch, by definition, you're going after one returning customers who are already more loyal and likely to be more valuable and two, you're looking for a way to take people who are already engaged and get them to be more engaged, which is another signal for value. Are there any other value signals that you think drove this example in particular?

June Dershewitz - 16:46 - Just a little bit downstream from this, which is really important to us when we call it five-minute plays, so five-minute play is someone watching one stream of content for at least five minutes of time in a session and we see that as someone came to a video stream on twitch, and they sat, and they watched it for at least five minutes, so presumably it caught their attention and so the longer they're there on our site watching content, it benefits us as a business and we hope that it benefits them as a customer because they're finding and engaging with content that interests them. So why five minutes? Why not four minutes? Why not six minutes? It's actually not hard science. A while back we just put the stake in the ground and said we think five minutes is good, a good signifier, and we really. And we have stuck with that over time, and it's served us well.

Allison Hartsoe - 17:37 - I like what you said there that just put a stake in the ground. Let's just somewhere we don't have to argue. They know what the scientific number is and I sometimes think as adults we get so caught up in having to have a crisp number crisp metric versus the, you know, let's guide the business in generally the correct direction, which is we want people to be watching longer or we want people to be engaging longer, and sure enough, I mean in today's shortest attention span culture, I can't remember the last time I watched five minutes of a video that I didn't like. That sounds like a pretty solid metric to me.

June Dershewitz - 18:12 - Right, right. Alright. Customers on Twitter are incredibly engaged with content on days that they're active. The watch nearly two hours of content. Wow. Yeah.

Allison Hartsoe - 18:26 - So in the example you were talking about earlier, it also, I think there was a, a nice illusion to recency and what I find so interesting about this is it's one of the key metrics of customer lifetime value, and we look at recency. We look at the frequency when we're trying to predict people's future value in the lift in the. Yeah. With the one percent that you got, was that an immediate, like we're just going to measure in the short term calculation or was that something that somebody was looking at the much broader picture? So in other words, do you think there's even more potential behind this?

June Dershewitz - 19:01 - Well, there's definitely more potential behind that, and I think that as Twitch has grown as a business, we've gotten a more sophisticated understanding of our customers and how they interact with our product and, and that's evolved over time really. And when we think about recency and frequency, there are still lots of things to learn, right? Breaking it down to different customer personas helps us understand what drives people back, why do they come back and what's the cycle of their usage of our product. Right. And some people might make a daily habit of it, and I'm just switching liquid content every single day, and that's great, but there are others that might just like to watch esports, and they'll only show up to watch content when there's new sports event and if those don't happen every day when they're not on our site every day. So those are the kinds of conversations we're having right now.

Allison Hartsoe - 19:52 - So customer personas, that's a really interesting angle. When you find these use cases of people coming in, does it feed right back into the product team and give them exactly the guidance that they need. Is there a data component to this or is it a combination of what's called the math and the magic, the art, and the science coming up together.

June Dershewitz - 20:14 - the math and the magic. I liked that.

Allison Hartsoe - 20:18 - I can't actually say I made that up. I actually stole it from Bain and. And one of their recent documents. Yeah. Yeah. I wish I could be on the show too, but I can't take credit for that one.

June Dershewitz - 20:28 - I can. Okay. I can vouch firsthand for the company shouldn't have math plus magic when I see my colleague who focuses solely on audience research, working collaboratively with a data scientist on my team and they're, um, the qualitative research and understands attitudes and motivations, and he has access to all the hundreds of billions of rows of our behavioral data and can match those attitudes to behavior. And I think that the combination of qualitative and quantitative research is really, really important.

Allison Hartsoe - 21:02 - I think you're absolutely right. Zack Anderson, who we've had on the show before, it has told me in the past that they pull in all that qualitative research. Even if it's somebody saying f you 150 times in the box, I guess that still tells you something. And I don't know if Twitch has this too, but do you actually have customers that tattooed the brand on themselves because they're such passionate fans?

June Dershewitz - 21:33 - I haven't, I haven't seen any tattoos, but honestly I haven't looked for it. But I do know that we, we sell quite a bit of Twitch branded merchandise to, uh, to our customers who are giant fans of it. We have a twitch conference every year. I'll TwitchCon set to happen again in October and the bay area, and there has been a notoriously long line for our merchandise store. People want to buy Twitch branded items.

Allison Hartsoe - 22:02 - I think it's just a matter before you see the tattoos

June Dershewitz - 22:07 - I know. I'm sure there are already out there. I'm going to go look after this call.

Allison Hartsoe - 22:11 - Excellent. Excellent. Are there any other examples you want to give us or anything else you want to talk about with relation to customers and product-centric data before we get into, you know, what should I do?

June Dershewitz - 22:26 - Sure. I just wanted to mention that I feel like having been involved in the data and analytics space for so long, I've seen some really encouraging trends happen over say the past decade when it comes to product development and product management, taking an interest in data and recognizing the importance and the necessity of using data to make smart decisions about where they take the product or which products they built, to begin with, and so I've found more and more often that the data people are working very closely with product teams and product teams are also focused on building products that address customer needs. It's all coming together right now. I think it's a good positive trend where we can expect product managers more in the future to be deeply invested in using data to drive what they're doing.

Allison Hartsoe - 23:25 - I think that's an excellent call. When a new product manager comes in, do you get to interview them?

June Dershewitz - 23:30 - They're not me personally, but I believe that our product manager interview loops, um, do, do data scientists or data analysts.

Allison Hartsoe - 23:37 - Yeah, that's exactly what I was looking for. And so if I were going to hire a product manager that I wanted to make sure it was data-centric, are there good questions I should particularly ask them other than deep data in your everyday life,

June Dershewitz - 23:51 - there's an entire book cracking the product manager interview, and it tells you exactly what to ask.

Allison Hartsoe - 23:59 - No, that's perfect. Do you know who it's by? By chance?

June Dershewitz - 24:03 - I have it right here on my desktop. Let me open it up and tell you. It's by someone who Gail Lockman McDowell and Jackie Bavaro.

Allison Hartsoe - 24:14 - So I imagine they don't just give you one go to the question. They probably give you a whole series of things to think about.

June Dershewitz - 24:22 - Yeah,

Allison Hartsoe - 24:22 - Well that's a fantastic resource. So I guess if you are a product manager, you want to become a better product manager. That sounds like a good go-to book for working for a cool company like Twitch.

June Dershewitz - 24:34 - Oh yeah, absolutely.

Allison Hartsoe - 24:35 - Excellent. Excellent. Okay. Well, let's say I'm convinced that I decided that I want to put more customer information into my product development, but maybe I've got a team that's not really used to this. How do I start getting my traditional product managers going toward modern maybe data, I don't want to call it necessarily data-driven because we don't want to lose the magic side of the equation, but how do I get them to start to be more data-centric than they were before?

June Dershewitz - 25:13 - Maybe a lightweight way to get them to start thinking about predictions before product launch. They're going to launch a product. Ask them, what do you think is going to happen when you launch this product? What do you expect to happen? Can you quantify that and then why do you think that? And that's a way of getting them to turn to data to help them figure out what impact they expect their product to have. Right? In a quantifiable way. And that's something that here at Twitch we have a real strong culture of that, and when you say I'm going to do this thing, people always come back with, well what do you expect to see happen?

Allison Hartsoe - 25:55 - Is there also a culture that you can't just give? Like I want to build awareness, that's me, you know, and I'm going to count reach as my quantifiable metric. Is there a way to kind of keep them from giving soft metrics or soft metrics?

June Dershewitz - 26:11 - I think that that's just a muscle you have to build over time and reach and brand awareness and all of those are incredibly important things to think about as a business. But they're especially vaccine for anyone who's involved in data because they are difficult to quantify.

Allison Hartsoe - 26:31 - Okay. Right. So maybe just put a stake in the ground as you did with your five-minute rule and try to get them going and then go from there. Right. Okay. So what would be the next step?

June Dershewitz - 26:42 - So the first is getting product people to talk about quantifiable goals is one great thing in order to not over-index on having a product-centric org, I would say make sure that you've got the balance between the product-centric view and the customer-centric view at twitch, as much importance we place on product. We also have one of our core values that is customer-centric for us, it's called creators first, which is the creators of user-generated content being at the center of our business and that's ingrained in everyone's mindset and everything they do. So even though often you talk to people here and everyone's like the product, product, they're also very focused always on the customer.

Allison Hartsoe - 27:38 - That's important. Whether it's the San Francisco Giants and their fan first mentality or other places where the player first or patient first. I often hear this in the core values of the company, and that's a really great flag, easily embedded in the culture. That's very helpful and as they're maybe a third step.

June Dershewitz - 27:57 - I think third, it's important to evaluate at every step in your product cycle. So for me, that would be proud of research, product development, product optimization that you are seizing opportunities to use data to make smart decisions, right? So this is data people and product people working in concert to make sure that what they're doing has a quantifiable impact and as much as that seems like it might involve technology and if I just buy some technology, I'll solve the problem. It's not. It's entirely about people and process.

Allison Hartsoe - 28:39 - Yeah. I often find this check the box mentality. I'm going to get an email program, I'm going to fill in all these holes in my tech stack, which is admittedly important, but it doesn't replace strategy, and it doesn't replace the way that you judge how things are going. Sometimes we talk about metrics that measure the tool and how well the tool is operating versus metrics that measure the broader customer or a measure of the broader product. And I imagine you'd agree with that too. You kind of have to separate these things.

June Dershewitz - 29:13 - Yeah, you definitely do.

Allison Hartsoe - 29:14 - Good. Any other steps? Is that pretty much it? Keep it to three?

June Dershewitz - 29:18 - No, I think that's it.

Allison Hartsoe - 29:19 - Good. Good. Okay. Well, June, is there a way that people can get in touch with you if they have more questions or they want to follow up, or they want to apply for a job at twitch?

June Dershewitz - 29:30 - Sure. I welcome any contacts through Linkedin. I'm the only June Dershewitz there, or I'm occasionally on Twitter @jdersh. If you're interested in a job at Twitch generally, our job site is

Allison Hartsoe - 29:47 - and just for clarity, Dershowitz is spelled D-E-R-S-H-E-W-I-T-Z. I know because I've spelled it many times.

June Dershewitz - 29:56 - Uh huh. That's correct.

Allison Hartsoe - 29:59 - That'll help you find her. So now let's summarize a little bit. In the beginning of our conversation we talked about why should I care about customer-centric product development and how is it different and one of the things you said, in the beginning, was it's not mutually exclusive mindsets between the two, which is sometimes how we think of it now, the oxymoron of customer-centric versus products and trick, but it's actually a very powerful combination. This is where we acknowledge the customer needs, particularly in the product research phase. When you're considering the audience upfront, perhaps considering the CLV breakouts upfront and using that to create a really well-formed strategy and then you gave us this nice tidy package of how does the customer play a role when the product is basically on a pinnacle of the organization.

Allison Hartsoe - 30:49 - And you talked about three different pieces here, one being research and innovation which is kind of the heart of your customer center kickoff and then product development which are the measures of how well you're doing and the fact that you have to have those upfront even when your creating and launching the product, you need to think about what metrics you're going to use and then third, the optimization of the product which also leads into the five whys of the root cause of did it do well or didn't do well, which is a natural outpouring of having the measures for success. Did I miss anything there?

June Dershewitz - 31:24 - No, that's a perfect summary.

Allison Hartsoe - 31:25 - Good. Good. Okay, and then we talked about the impact and although I know you can't quantify it in dollars, we talked about a one percent lift that came through a customer-centric product driven improvement, where know maybe originally internally people were looking at this feature as might be nice to have, might be is it a half to have and they kind of talk about it verbally, but what you said in the beginning is not so much that, but the fact that you tested it, that this part of the organization took it on as a test like, okay, well we don't really know, let's acknowledge that we don't know, let's try and the test was really around personalizing the content delivery so that you could incorporate recently viewed content into the product and getting that lift as an outcome was a huge deal because at the volumes that twitch runs, that one percent actually means quite a lot. I miss anything.

June Dershewitz - 32:23 - It was incredibly impactful for us.

Allison Hartsoe - 32:26 - Yeah, and then we also talked about the combination of behavioral and attitudinal data coming together and of course all your rabid fans going to TwitchCon I guess I should call it in San Francisco in October. Then you mentioned this book that we will also link to on our transcript page about cracking the product manager interview, which is probably a really great step if you are a product manager listening to this interview.

June Dershewitz - 32:50 - That's a free ebook by the way.

Allison Hartsoe - 32:52 - Oh, is it? Oh, good to know.

June Dershewitz - 32:54 - It's on Amazon. I just looked it up.

Allison Hartsoe - 32:56 - Good. So third, what should you do next? We talked about three steps in the process. One is quantifiable goals. What do you think will happen when you launch this product? Can you quantify that? And even if you're just putting a soft stake in the ground, at least put a stake in the ground and you can build that muscle, as you say, over time for better analytics and better data, and then second, you want to ensure that there's a balance between the product-centric and the customer-centric view. Sometimes that goes into the company's core values, and that can be a great signal of is it creators first, is it fan first? What is the mentality within the organization that you can hook to help ensure that the balance is there between product-centric and customer-centric? It can't just be; I'm going to throw some data in. It needs to fit those values because everybody aligns to those values and often people are rewarded by those values and then third; we got into the evaluation cycle.

Allison Hartsoe - 33:56 - We talked specifically kind of tying it back to our first part about product research development and optimization, but really asking yourself, are you using data at each step to run alongside the product managers and what would it take to do that? It's not about having the technology; it's about asking the right questions and having the right data to go after those questions. Anything else you want to add?

June Dershewitz - 34:20 - You've done a great job of summarizing our conversation.

Allison Hartsoe - 34:22 - Oh, good, good, good. Well, as always, links to everything we discuss are at slash podcast. June, it's been such a pleasure having you join us today. Thank you for coming.

June Dershewitz - 34:35 - Thank you for having me.

Allison Hartsoe - 34:37 - Remember everyone when you use your data effectively, you can build customer equity. It's not magic. It's just a very specific journey that you can follow to get results. Thank you for joining today's show. This is Allison. Just a few things before you head out. Every Friday I put together a short bulleted list of three to five things I've seen that represent customer equity signal, not noise, and believe me, there's a lot of noise out there. I actually call this email the signal things I include could be smart tools. I've run across articles, I've shared cool statistics or people and companies I think are doing amazing work, building customer equity. If you'd like to receive this nugget of goodness each week, you can sign up at, and you'll get the very next one. I hope you enjoy the signal. See you next week on the Customer Equity Accelerator.


Articles mentioned in the podcast include:

Cracking the PM Interview: How to Land a Product Manager Job in Technology


Connect with June by LinkedIn or Twitter.  


Interested in working at Twitch? Find more information on their website.  


Key Concepts: Customer Lifetime Value, Marketing, Digital Data, Customer Centricity, Long-Term Customer Value, Marketing Leaders, Analytics, Creativity, Product Development, Audience Research


Who Should Listen: CAOs, CCOs, CSOs, CDOs, Digital Marketers, Business Analysts, C-suite professionals, Entrepreneurs, eCommerce, Data Scientists, Analysts, CMOs, Customer Insights Leaders, CX Analysts, Data Services Leaders, Data Insights Leaders, SVPs or VPs of Marketing or Digital Marketing, SVPs or VPs of Customer Success, Customer Advocates, Product Managers, Product Developers

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Recommended Episodes


Ep. 37: Implementing a CLV Strategy with Jordan Elkind of Custora Part 1



Ep. 38: Implementing a CLV Strategy with Jordan Elkind of Custora Part 2



Ep. 39: Investing in your Customers with MIT's Michael Schrage



Ep. 42: Intersection of CX and CLV with Ehow Chen


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