Following an unconventional route into a PMM career, Brianna Cabral, Product Marketing Manager at Arena, signed up for a PMA membership and has gone from strength to strength.

She discusses how a lack of appetite for the baking industry led to a thirst for success as a product marketer, and how her membership has since played a key role in introducing new initiatives at the company.

Plus, Brianna also shared:

  • Her career to date and how she got into product marketing
  • Success stories since becoming a PMA member
  • Her favorite features in the membership dashboard
  • How the membership has contributed to meeting KPIs
  • Advice for fellow product marketers
  • Future aspirations in her product marketing career

Tell us a bit about your career to date and how you got into product marketing

My career history is a bit different. I have two degrees in baking and pastry arts and spent 10 years as a Pastry Chef.

I thought this would be my dream job, and when it didn't work out, I was devastated and no longer passionate about the industry. I leapt into sales with a company that was willing to take the chance on someone with no sales experience.

When COVID hit, I was forced into furlough and found myself looking for another job once again. I ended up applying to a marketing role at my current company but ultimately accepted another sales role.

My manager knew from day one that sales wasn't my long-term career, so he helped me learn about my company's departments to see where I might want to explore next.

Through those connections, I accepted a position in product marketing at the same company! I’m loving it and am so thankful for my current and past manager.

Have you enjoyed any success stories since becoming a PMA member?

My greatest success from my education through Product Marketing Alliance is starting a win/loss program from scratch.

I took the Product Marketing Alliance Core class about a year ago and I noticed that my company wasn’t doing any form of win/loss - no surveys with churned customers and no interviews.

Being new to product marketing and coming from a sales background, I knew this was an area I could work on. I presented this to my manager who agreed that we could be doing this. Through the use of the education in the core class and the templates, I started building a program.

My team’s small and we don't have the funds to hire out this program and I was excited to do something new. I started with building out what questions we would want to ask during interviews. This is where the templates came into play, and I used the templates to get started.

My manager and I went through and highlighted the ones we wanted to focus on during the interview process. I then worked out the kinks of targeting customers and prospects and further tweaked this as our program became more successful.

What're your favorite resources in your membership dashboard?

The templates and webinars. I attended webinars hosted by PMA on win/loss to see if there was a way to analyze the data I was gathering.

The webinars provided me with insight into how outsourcing a program like this would be and confirmed I’m on the right track.

How has your membership helped with internal projects and KPIs/metrics?

We set a goal of 15 win-or-loss interviews per quarter. I’m happy to report that we're exceeding the goal each quarter.

This program has been fully supported by stakeholders and our marketing and sales team. Because of the impact it is having, I was recently promoted to Product Marketing Manager which is another huge success for me.

How have you integrated your member resources into your day-to-day role?

I used the win/loss interview template to create an entire win/loss program. I use that template, with modifications, almost every day when I do a customer interview.

What's one piece of advice you would give to other product marketers?

Look for gaps and programs your company is not doing. Suggest the idea and create a plan on how it can be done to your manager.

If you’ve enough programs, always tweak them to make them better. Establish collaborative and strong relationships across all departments. Don't be afraid to set meetings and suggest ideas, or ask questions!

What’s next in your product marketing career?

I'd love to expand my program into churn customers and advance in my title. I’d also love to work with PMA to present how a win/loss program can be done from scratch without hiring outside help.