May 27, 2022
- Our Team
It is our great pleasure to introduce Anna Maridal as our new VP Data Products. She is joining Marketer following an 8-year run with the international media company Schibsted, and we could not have been prouder to have her on board. Anna possesses strong tech and product management skills and combined with her natural curiosity and business-minded focus, it is already noticeable that she will contribute significantly to our product development.
Anna will be responsible for Marketer’s product strategy and for the operational management of our two portals Eiendom.no and Newbuilds.com. Among other things, she will actively work across relevant teams in the organisation to develop a sustainable business model for monetising quality real estate leads. Now, let’s get to know her better.
Describe your perfect morning.
In the summer it is definitely to drink my morning coffee in the sun.
Tell us a bit about your background.
You could say that I ended up in the tech world in reverse order. My education is actually in Political science and History (Master’s degree), as my goal was diplomacy. A couple of months after I graduated I was lucky enough to attend an engagement by Netcom’s infrastructure department. I realised then and there that I belong in the tech world just by having conversations with people. The technical language was clear, fact-driven, and theory-based. Since then, data has been a common denominator for my career choices.
Before Marketer, I worked at the international media company, Schibsted, as their Product Manager. I was based in London for four of the eight years I was with them and had the responsibility for, amongst other things, their in-house DMP (Data Management Platform). I was fortunate to join the company at a time when they were moving from a holding company owning individual brands to a product and tech company, and therefore I also had the opportunity to play a big part in forming their now comprehensive product portfolio.
What would you say is the biggest accomplishment so far in your career?
It must be that I was able to help Schibsted create a global scale segmentation machinery from scratch in less than two years. I am especially proud that we managed to make it profitable after only two months, and that we continued to grow from there. It became a global product underpinning all of Schibsted's targeted advertising businesses and it is still operational today.
Could you explain what Product Management really is?
That is actually an interesting question, as a lot of people are still unsure what the role implies. In Norway, “Product Manager” is still a relatively new title and companies tend to define the role differently. How I define the role is that you work with products from A-Z. A product manager is responsible for the entire process of making a product successful for both the company, the customers and all other relevant users, which in total is a continuous trade-off. This involves tying together components such as identifying customer needs and how the product can meet their business objectives, while internally defining a certain range of success criteria for the product, and then ultimately managing your team to realise this vision.
The need for competence within several technical areas is vital in this role to see the bigger picture and choose the right strategy for a product. However, there lies strength in being comfortable with the fact that as a product manager you can never fully be the expert in all areas. Instead, there is a need to ask the right questions and utilise people’s strengths through open and honest communication.
As VP of Data Products at Marketer, what will be your focus going forward?
Marketer is a thriving company with several state-of-the-art solutions, where I will have the overall responsibility for our two portals eiendom.no and newbuilds.com. These are full-service digital destinations for newbuild properties and investment opportunities in the Norwegian and international real estate marketplaces respectively. Drawing on my experience, data collection will be the main priority so that we can enable data-driven experimentation to determine our best possible route forward. Both portals are at a stage where the potential is limitless, and everything we do going forward will be with a global mindset.
In a senior role, I also find it highly important to give people room to grow, as we simultaneously make Marketer grow. I intend to create an environment where we can learn together, encourage each other, as well as remain curious and continuously assume that things can always be improved further.
Do you have any advice for those who wish to follow in your footsteps?
Everyone works in different ways and has different approaches. However, what I did to get to where I am today is daring to put myself out there, and not limit myself to solely performing work that I am familiar with. By daring to say “can I try?” or “I think I can do that really well”, you put yourself in a situation where you will expand your knowledge immensely, while also better understanding what you enjoy working with. I recommend everyone to try this tomorrow already, even if it’s just a small task.
(Fun fact) What would the title of your autobiography be?
The little engine that could. 🚂