Oct 27 • 56M

Category creation and brand building | Barbra Gago (Pando, Miro, Greenhouse, Culture Amp)

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Lenny Rachitsky
Interviews with world-class product leaders and growth experts to uncover concrete, actionable, and tactical advice to help you build, launch, and grow your own product.
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Barbra Gago is the founder and CEO of Pando, where she’s democratizing career progression. Previously she worked as the Chief Marketing Officer and Global Head of Marketing at Miro, where she helped create an entirely new software category for Miro, and also served as VP of Marketing at Greenhouse, where she led go-to-market strategy. In today’s episode, we cover three main topics: category creation, branding and rebranding, and building opinionated software. Barbra discusses how she was able to rebrand Miro and launch a whole new category—and why her attempt to do that at Greenhouse failed. We cover the benefits of building your own category, and when it makes sense to do so and when it doesn’t. She also shares the importance of getting to know your users, why a great brand is informed by its values, and why Pando is built in an opinionated way.

Listen now on Apple, Spotify, Google, Overcast, and YouTube.

Find the full transcript here: https://www.lennyspodcast.com/category-creation-and-brand-building-barbra-gago-pando-miro-greenhouse-culture-amp/#transcript

Where to find Barbra Gago:

• Twitter: https://twitter.com/barbragago

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/barbragago

• Pando: https://www.pando.com/

Where to find Lenny:

• Newsletter: https://www.lennysnewsletter.com

• Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennysan

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lennyrachitsky/

Thank you to our wonderful sponsors for making this episode possible:

• AssemblyAI: https://www.assemblyai.com

• Stytch: https://stytch.com/lenny

• Vanta: https://vanta.com/lenny

Referenced:

• G2: https://g2.com/

• Software Advice: https://www.softwareadvice.com/

• Marketo: https://www.marketo.com/

• HubSpot: https://www.hubspot.com/

• Gainsight: https://www.gainsight.com/

• Greenhouse: https://www.greenhouse.io/

• Miro: https://miro.com/

• Gartner: https://www.gartner.com/

• Forrester: https://www.forrester.com/research/product-management/

• Oyster: https://www.oysterhr.com/

• Deel: https://www.deel.com/

• Atlassian: https://www.atlassian.com/

Radical Candor: Be a Kick-Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity: https://www.amazon.com/Radical-Candor-Revised-Kick-Ass-Humanity/dp/1250235375

The Art of War: https://www.amazon.com/Art-War-Sun-Tzu/dp/1590302257

Kafka on the Shore: https://www.amazon.com/Kafka-Shore-Haruki-Murakami/dp/0099458322

Cautionary Tales podcast: https://timharford.com/articles/cautionarytales/

The Sandman on Netflix: https://www.netflix.com/title/81150303

• Nancy Duarte on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nancyduarte/

• Al Gore’s TED Talk: https://www.ted.com/talks/al_gore_the_new_urgency_of_climate_change

In this episode, we cover:

(04:04) Barbra’s background

(05:06) Barbra’s startup

(06:07) Category creation vs. winning in existing categories

(07:49) What is an applicant tracking system, and why have they been problematic?

(09:57) What is a product category?

(13:06) Examples of product categories

(14:05) Greenhouse as an example of failed category creation 

(16:46) How Miro successfully created a new category

(18:37) Utilizing user feedback

(21:15) The mechanics of category creation

(21:22) How to advocate for your new category with directory sites

(25:53) The middle ground between new and existing categories

(29:37) When is it time to rebrand?

(38:51) How to create a lasting, global brand

(41:18) How values inform brands

(43:13) Insights into developing company values

(44:24) The elements of a brand

(46:37) What is opinionated software?

(47:57) The benefits of opinionated software, and why Barbra’s software is opinionated

(51:23) Lightning round

Production and marketing by https://penname.co/. For inquiries about sponsoring the podcast, email podcast@lennyrachitsky.com.