Hi, I'm Daniel, a user-centered Product Manager with a track record of growing audience and revenue while increasing end user engagement and retention.
Whether I'm part of a business that's building a platform, like Emparty and Weedmaps, or operating within them, like The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard, I'm always looking to seize the opportunities in the multi-sided markets of today's platform economies.
Over the last five years, I have focused on cultivating five core competencies— leadership, business strategy, design, growth and most recently user research. Of these core competencies, user research is the least understood, and generally the least valued. The avoidance of research— due to concerns about cost, time and resource allocation, lack of internal expertise and infrastructure, or simply hubris that the team knows already knows everything about the market and problem set—is one of the primary reasons there are so many ineffective roadmaps, failed products and unhappy teams.
If you'd like to read more about my thoughts on how user research is critical to create products customers love, as well as helping foster a healthy and productive company culture, check out this how-to guide I published in UX Planet on Medium-- Operationalize User Research in Five Days: How-To Gain Key Insights into Your Jobs to Be Done and Radically Improve Your Product for as Little as $300.
Most recently, I led product, design and research for Emparty, a seed-stage startup building a marketplace for party venues. I joined the company pre-product, and determined the product roadmap from pre-product to Beta to the Version 1.0, which shipped in April 2019.
Previously, I ran user growth product at Weedmaps where I led numerous growth initiatives, including an onboarding overhaul which included Weedmaps' first foray into federated authentication via Facebook and Google.
I love building products and growing businesses. In the last five years I've earned the opportunity to own a number of major product launches:
Emparty 1.0 (Emparty; Q2 2019)
Omnichannel notification service (Weedmaps)
User Profile & Account Settings redesign (Weedmaps)
User onboarding (Weedmaps; new)
Federated authentication (Weedmaps)
Header and footer redesign (Weedmaps)
Apple News integration (The Hollywood Reporter & Billboard)
Artist pages redesign (Billboard)
Aggregate pages redesign (The Hollywood Reporter)
Hot 100 chart UX redesign (Billboard)
List pages redesign (The Hollywood Reporter)
Facebook Instant Articles integration (The Hollywood Reporter & Billboard)
OVP transition to HTML5 (The Hollywood Reporter & Billboard)
Mobile gallery pages redesign (The Hollywood Reporter)
I've managed nine vendor relationships, managing the internal recommendation, technical integration, launch execution, maintenance, and most recently, contract negotiations:
Omnichannel service provider for Weedmaps; negotiated contract (Transition to Iterable from Clevertap)
ESP for Weedmaps (Transition to Sendgrid from Mailgun)
OVP for The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard (via Brightcove)
Interactive maps for The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard (via Mapme)
Live Blogs for The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard (Transition to Tintup from Scribblelive)
Quizzes and polls for The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard (via Qzzr)
Surveys for The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard (Transition to Typeform from Surverymonkey)
Brackets for The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard (via Brackify)
Product management can mean a lot of things. This is what it means to me:
To deeply understand the human condition. To know the problem we're trying to solve. The story we're trying to tell.
To remove pain from people's lives. To design for humans. To be empathic. To research. To write. To protect and to seduce. To*
My experience ranges from orchestrating the development and execution of omnichannel marketing and notification infrastructure to power an entire platform's outbound messaging at scale (e.g. Weedmaps & Iterable) to developing and integrating a leading publisher's complete catalogue of product into an emerging, and soon-to-be dominant platform in media (e.g. The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard & Apple News).
I make it a point to embed myself into the design process. An interface tells a story; albeit a story where transactions take place, and design must delicately balance both user and business needs.
To that end, I will spend hours diving into analytics dashboards hunting for patterns and aberrations that will help expose our customers’ needs. On the other hand, I am seasoned enough to know that data doesn’t always paint the full picture-- user research and deep empathic thinking is vital to understand the jobs to be done.
Let's take an iterative, thoughtful, data-driven approach to product management that puts user's behavior and desires at the forefront.