Meet the Building Engine Behind Frequence’s High-Impact Products
May 19, 2022
5 minute read
In the digital advertising space, there are so many puzzle pieces when it comes to selling and distributing content. From third-party applications to omnichannel reporting, how do you put all those pieces together?
Product Manager Bence Orlai discusses Frequence’s approach, empathy-driven user experience, and what it takes to be a B2B product manager.
What drew you to Frequence?
I’ve worked everywhere from venture capital-funded start-ups to a Fortune 10 company, but I’ve found that I thrive in environments that approach their work with a true start-up mindset. Frequence has found product-market fit and growth as the founders bootstrapped their way to the present day and that is a massive accomplishment. We’re a startup in the genuine sense of the word with a huge scale-up opportunity. The market opportunity is there, and Frequence has the right cultural DNA to capture that opportunity.
From a cultural standpoint, we’re a very closely-knit team. I feel that this is a place where I can truly make an impact and grow with the company.
How do you define the role of a product manager in the B2B Space?
Product managers work at the intersection of business, user experience, and technology. My experience in the role has taught me that the DNA for business-to-business product management is very different from business-to-consumer. Your clients use your products for hours every day, often for mission-critical business workflows. These requirements have a big impact on what makes a software product successful. It takes a focused individual with business acumen, a knack for UX, and a real sense of empathy for their users.
What values are most important to you as a product manager?
Ultimately, I want to build software that makes its users efficient in their work. The attributes that define me as a product manager, not just a business manager or a technologist, are data-informed and empathetic. I need to be able to tell facts apart from interpretations, and that requires leaving my ego at the door. — What I think or feel about a situation is secondary to what the data says. It’s equally important to understand how our product is used and what the users love about it.
I always try to keep these three guiding principles in mind:
Drive impactful business outcomes with the software that I build.
Understand the industry and the business environment in which my product’s users work.
Remember that every user is a person. That human element and empathy are key.
How does the product team combine technology and user experience?
Our goal is to empower the users of our platform so that they can do their jobs efficiently. My team works on the part of the platform where campaigns are delivered after they’re sold. Once a deal has closed, our platform makes sure that campaigns are delivered optimally and on time. We aim to be fluent in the user’s workflow and what exactly they want to accomplish with the product. Then we translate that need into requirements for the technology.
My team is one of three groups on the product side that build the Frequence platform.
Kim Walker leads the Workflow team. They assist the sales users and serve as the three-legged stool of the company, working to carefully balance the needs of the technology, users, and business.
My team handles Transactions. We do a lot of work behind the scenes, building the “engine” for the platform with integrations, algorithms and data. It’s more on the technical side than a typical product manager’s job, but I enjoy that aspect.
Then there’s the Performance team, which is all about data collection, analytics, and reporting. These three pods are in constant collaboration to deliver a streamlined experience for our users.
What are some of your favorite projects that you’ve worked on at Frequence?
I’ve been lucky to work with some of our largest partners on highly complex projects that have significantly improved their user experience.
We recently completed a large-scale workflow integration with Google’s advertising platform that involves over a thousand business users across the country. This new product allows users to manage their owned and operated media together with audience extension in one easy-to-use experience.
My team is also working on a multi-system integration that automates the launching and management of a very large volume of addressable campaigns for display and video. This capability will enable the efficiency of addressable targeting at scale - it will be exciting to see the results!
What are the most important qualifications and skills for anyone applying to work at Frequence on the Product Team?
Many people are drawn to product management, and it’s an evolving field. I feel that this role has evolved a lot since I became a PM 8 years ago. In addition to building products, I have come to enjoy coaching and mentoring fellow product managers. It's also a constant learning opportunity for me to see their experiences.
I’d say that anyone looking to start this career should have a growth mindset and intellectual curiosity. Beyond the necessary technical and business acumen, product managers also need a high degree of emotional intelligence, a collaboration-first mentality, and empathy for their users.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
I love being outdoors and hiking with my wife and two kids. In California, there are so many beautiful trails: Marin County is my favorite place for day trips, but for longer trips, I enjoy heading further up the state.
Lately, I’ve been getting into home improvement projects in the backyard. Electrical, landscaping, anything you can think of. The bigger the project, the better!