Back in the early days, our product manager Matt Bilotti, Elias and our designers would do a bunch of customer research and customer development work.

Their mission was to talk to as many product marketers as possible to try and understand what they wanted from the product, what annoyed them about their current tech stack and how we could make Drift work for them. They were in search of pain.

It was through that search of pain that we found gold — and it had nothing to do with a feature in the product at all.

We learned first-hand that product marketers feel underserved and like no one knows exactly what they do. They wanted to feel some love.

So we thought we could start creating content for them — we figured, what if we started shedding more light on the role of product marketing? What does a day in the life of a product marketer look like? How do they define their role? What do they care about? What would they want to read, follow and share?

So we decided to focus our first marketing efforts on product marketers. We wanted to fill a gap in the market and create the content they had been missing.

What if we could get 10 product marketers to love Drift?

If we could get 10, we knew we could get to 20. If we could get to 20, we could get to 50, 100 and beyond. Product marketers will begin to tell their friends and other product marketers — and help us reach what Seth Godin calls “sneezers.” Because when they sneeze, everyone else gets the germs — a.k.a. learns about Drift.

At the time, we didn’t have any content on our blog yet. And we didn’t have a podcast. So we decided to launch a newsletter — we wanted to send a weekly email with the best product marketing content from around the web. We could curate articles, videos, podcasts and all types of content focused on product marketing.

That was the idea for the newsletter — but we had no subscribers and we had no traffic.

So we needed to start collecting email addresses and building up our list by hand. One name at a time.

And that brings us to the next play.

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