Product Innovation Series with Aram Melkoumov

Customer-led product manager Aggelos Mouzakitis joins Sergey Ross to discuss how intense human-centered research can lead to insanely effective products. They discuss how more human interaction leads to more opportunities to optimize your product, research questions that can ruin your product growth, and skills every product manager must hone.

Show Notes

Think of the customer-led growth approach as a holistic psychotherapeutic user interview. Who is a product manager if not a therapist who is well-versed in their product?

About Aggelos

Aggelos Mouzakitis is a jobs-to-be-done customer researcher. He currently works at a company called Growth Sandwich in London and has master’s degree in psychotherapy. Aggelos is a qualitative researcher with passion for numbers. His take on hard data?  “I find them complex, inhumane, and they make me sleepy”. Tune in for more of his straight-shooting and insight-rich delivery.

SHOW NOTES:

0:00 | Who is Aggelos Mouzakitis?
00:34 | The story behind the brand name “Growth Sandwich”
01:07 | The difference between sales-led growth, product-led growth, and customer-led growth.
04:40 | The impressive attention to detail of the customer-led growth research process.
09:50 | 3 reasons why some companies SHOULDN’T be product-led.
13:03 | Why you shouldn’t be completely product-led or completely sales-led.
16:34 | Best practices in the customer research process
23:14 | Do customers know what they want? (customer imagination)
30:31 | How can product managers build better products? (Two scalable tactics that product managers don’t do enough)
34:13 | Quantitative vs. qualitative data in customer-led approach (and how to quantify qualitative data).
37:14 | Two breakthrough moments in Aggelos Mouzakitis’ career.
39:44 | Why qualitative research is unscalable but critical for great product management (and why you should do unscalable things).
43:35 | Two things every product manager must understand when they conduct research.


QUOTES:

“Customer led growth basically leverages mainly qualitative research to help a company drive product and growth decisions.” - Aggelos [01:20]

“We cannot eradicate the human factor from any value proposition. The human factor has a position, and being product-led isn’t the silver bullet for everything.” - Aggelos  [12:48]
“I would say, in pretty much any area - whether it is finance, whether its product or sales, when anybody has a polarizing opinion like ‘only do this’ it’s like black and white and they’re super aggressive - usually it is a red flag.” - Sergey  [15:40]

“The perception of value that users expect is always biased from what they have seen already in their lives, from what they have experienced in competitor products.  So, if we would strictly ask customers ‘what do they want us to build’ we would have some sort of oligopoly where every solution would be almost the same.”  - Aggelos [24:15]

“Customers are the worst to tell us what we should build. Customers, on the other hand, are great to tell us about their problems - and then we would figure out how to solve their problems.”  - Aggelos [26:47]

“Empathy is the best way to be a good product manager even if you are not very sophisticated about quantitative stuff, and data, and graphs.”  - Aggelos [33:59]

“What is a marketing problem? Is it a matter of the copy that you’re using in your ads? Targeting that you’re having? Nobody cares. What matters when your marketing doesn’t work is you are communicating something that doesn’t resonate with the people that see it.” - Aggelos [39:44]


Connect with Aggelos 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/aggelos-mouzakitis-25011218/
Website: https://www.growthsandwich.com/

What is Product Innovation Series with Aram Melkoumov?

Product Innovation Series is an in-depth interview series featuring product & innovation leaders from small startups all the way to Fortune 500 behemoths. Our guests share their battle-tested perspective on what prevents teams from shipping a great product.
The show is hosted by Aram Melkoumov, the CEO of Crowdlinker.