ProductTank Yerevan, August, 2016

After a long pause the organizers of the ProductTank Yerevan meetup announced their next meetup, the ProductTank Yerevan, August, 2016 at the Armenian-Indian Center for Excellence in ICT. The schedule is as follows:

  • 7:00 PM: Attendees start to arrive. Mingling over drinks and food
  • 7:30 PM: First presentation
  • 8:00 (ish) PM: Second presentation
  • 8:45 PM: More mingling
  • 09:15 PM: Event ends
clock 10 August at 19:0
clock Armenian-Indian Center for Excellence in ICT
1 Alex Manoogian, 0025 Yerevan, Armenia
RSVP on Eventbrite

Who attends ProductTanks?
Our members are Product professionals from companies all over Armenia. Most of our audience is comprised of Product Managers, but we also have Designers, Marketers, Engineers, etc. At the meetups, we usually have 80-120 mid-to-senior level professionals.


ProductTank Yerevan, November, 2015

After a successful meetup at the Ayb High School, another ProductTank Yerevan meetup is on the way, this time at the Synergy International‘s headquarters. The schedule is as follows:

  • 7:30 PM: Attendees start to arrive. Mingling over drinks and food
  • 8:00 PM: First presentation
  • 8:30 (ish) PM: Second presentation
  • 9:00 (ish) PM: Third presentation
  • 9:30 PM: More mingling
  • 10:15 PM: Event ends
clock 25 November at 19:30
clock Synergy Business Center
A. Armenakyan 2/5, 0047 Yerevan, Armenia
RSVP on Eventbrite

Who attends ProductTanks?
Our members are Product professionals from companies all over Armenia. Most of our audience is comprised of Product Managers, but we also have Designers, Marketers, Engineers, etc. At the meetups, we usually have 80-120 mid-to-senior level professionals.

ProductTank Yerevan, October 2015

With little over a week to go, we’re also looking for a venue to host the second ProductTank Yerevan. If you have a great location that can host up to 100 people or know someone who does, let us know using this form:


Our team has already organized two events around product development and they both were great success. The next meetup will take place on the October 15th. And we’ll soon come back to you with details.

In the meanwhile please drop us your note, if you have proposals for topics, talks, locations for the first round.

19.15 – Speaker setup
19.30 – Start attendee registration
20.15 – ProductTank introduction
20.20 – First Speaker
20.40 – Second Speaker
21.00 – Third Speaker
21.20 – QA with all 3 speakers
21.45 – Event finish (followed by post event drinks)

Event’s facebook page:

ProductCamp Yerevan 2015

ProductCamp Yerevan (PCY) is the first and the only unconference for product managers, product marketing managers, entrepreneurs and others with passions for product, online and IT, in Yerevan, Armenia. ProductCamps are held regularly all over the world.

The PCY 2013 took place at TUMO Center for Creative Technologies, and hosted 250 participants, which is an impressive number for Yerevan. The keynote speaker was Wouter Blok from Google (Industry Manager Travel).

PCY 2013 was a huge success, it was supported by many local and international companies, and spread the word about the developing product community in Yerevan. During the full day event 250 young professionals and seasoned entrepreneurs were discussing topics varying from starting a company to exit strategy, from legal issues to entering the American market, from SEO to behavioral marketing, from developing an MVP to Agile, and others.

Despite ProductCamp being annual event series we did not have PCY 2014, however the PCY 2015 will only be 2 months late. We plan doing it in mid February or early March. We believe growing the product community in Armenia is our country’s future’s guarantee, and we should do it together.

Why is it important?
Because there are smart people in Armenia, who can create and want to create, and they need guidance. We have strong leadership in many Armenian tech companies and startups, and as new graduates look for job and new tech companies come to exist, the need for mentorship and evangelists arises.

What will it give to the community?
The PCY is one of the initiatives that brings together product managers and marketers, online concept developers and business owners from technology companies and other innovative businesses, with a single goal of fostering and growing the product community in Yerevan.

How is it done?
Most of the event and all of the sessions are held and run by the participants. The general process is supported by self-organized volunteers.

ProductTank Yerevan 2014 Spring

ProductTank Yerevan
It’s that time of the year again when the product-people of Yerevan gather together to discuss great ideas, share their experience and be a part of the growing product-community of Yerevan.

The first product-driven un-conference in Yerevan, the ProductCamp Yerevan 2013 was a huge success: 150+ product specialists, enthusiasts, and students gathered together last December at Tumo Center for Creative Technologies to have a full day of thinking, networking and fun.

Here we are again! On the April 30th Ginosi Corporation Yerevan Office is calling for a second product-driven un-conference at its headquarters – the ProductTank Yerevan 2014 Spring.

ProductTank sessions are quarterly organized meetings in the field of Product Management. As opposed to its older sister ProductCamp, ProductTank session is organized more often and is aimed for product professionals working in the mobile and web industries who come to exchange ideas and experiences about:

  • Product Management
  • Design
  • Business Modelling
  • Metrics
  • Usability

ProductTank features talks from guest speakers on both technical and business related topics and good old-fashioned networking over wine.

3 topics will be presented to discuss at ProductTank.

Follow the event on its Facebook page.

Keynote Speaker Wouter Blok – Industry Manager Travel at Google

wouter blokWouter Blok could currently be described as one of the most influential marketeers in the world not only because of the numerous industry awards he’s won and his current position as Industry Manager Travel at Google (The Marketing Company) but also because his energy, open style of management and passion for marketing are incredible to see first-hand. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Wouter for several years and am happy to announce that he’s accepted to join the first ProductCamp in Yerevan 2013 as the keynote Speaker.

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” – Confucius you rock says Wouter.

Join us on December 15th, 2013 at TUMO for this incredible event.

Register at and get your free ticket now!

The Art of Networking Meeting Interesting People

The Art of Networking Meeting Interesting People
By Laura Bilazarian

One of the most initially intimidating aspects of being an entrepreneur or salesperson is networking.  (And let’s just get it out there, it’s basically impossible to be an entrepreneur without also being a salesperson)

The first step to go from dreading networking to enjoying it is to think of it as meeting interesting people instead of networking.  For example, at Product Camp, I’m going to meet three interesting people.  This will help with being genuine, which is critical for success.  It also makes networking fun.

I’ve complied some tips below as a foundation anybody can use to get started, but like anything, it’s practice, practice, practice.  Remember, half of your success is what you are saying, but half is also body language and subtle nonverbal cues (how you present yourself).*   As you practice, watch others who you think are doing well and mimic the parts that also work for you. 

Last, never ever be intimidated by anyone.  Remember, that in most cases, the only difference between the über successful and you is years of hard work.  Most remember fondly the time when they were in your shoes, in the trenches, fighting every day, and love meeting young entrepreneurs or technologists (assuming you are polite and confident). An exercise to help you get over intimidation is to go to series of events and walk right up to and have a conversation with the most intimidating person in the room. (Although if you want to do business with this person, this violates my “always get introductions” rule – see below)


Expert Rules for Networking

Be Confident, Genuine and Smile:  Smile, eye contact, firm handshake and be genuine.  Change your mindset to being interested in what makes this person awesome, rather than in what they can do for you.

Questions and Connecting:  Ask a lot of smart questions. If you have something to pitch, try to work it into something the other person is saying, but remember events are not really the place for full-on pitching; they are a place for learning, for serendipitously meeting awesome people, and for hosting meetings that you planned in advance with people you got introductions to, which brings me to my next rule

Get Introductions:  Always get introductions if you can, especially for high level people (and if you can’t, find a way to).  This means in advance of an event, look up who is going and who you want to meet.  Find a way to get an introduction, or if you truly can’t get an intro, find a way to be of value.  For example, hey mister CEO, I hear you are coming to Armenia, would you like meet so I can give you a brief overview of the landscape? I can arrange a bunch of meetings or an event with all the top Armenian startups if you’re interested.  You can make it more appealing by having the meeting while you show them some local tourist or other off-the-beaten-path spot.

SHORT Elevator Pitch:  That said, always have an elevator pitch.  This should not be more than five sentences.  If the person is still interested, you can tell them the next fifteen, BUT

Leave at the peak of the party:  Once you feel you’ve connected with someone, ask for their card and move on.  Business is about momentum and trust, and it takes multiple interactions to build both.  The point of first meeting is to get people interested in you and maybe your idea, and then the rest comes down to follow up, so…

Follow up while people are still high from the party:  This means the day after the event.  Send a short “nice to meet you” note with your contact information (or a linkedin request – but with a message!) and whatever follow up you spoke about (try to add value!).  This is critical because they will assume if you are doing that with them, you do this in other aspects of your business (ahem, with customers).

Be nice to everyone, including the crazies:  A VC friend of mine is one of the most connected people on the planet, and when I asked him how, he said “Give time to everyone, even the crazies, you never know where a hot lead or idea will come from,” but then he did add “only fifteen minutes for the crazies.”

Golden Rule #1:  It’s very simple:  give before you get.  The happiest people with the strongest networks are those who are always thinking how they can help others out first.**  I promise once you flip your mind to be focused on “what can I do for this person?” rather than “what can this person do for me?” the world will open up in entirely new ways for you.

Golden Rule #2:  Busy people hate uncertainty (and long emails, phone calls and meetings).  When you are asking a busy person for something, try to be as brief and direct as possible.  The higher up they are, the more important it is to narrow your ask to one or two direct action items.  Also, don’t ask for general meetings or phone calls – send an agenda in advance or at least give a reason for the meeting.  Don’t ever ask busy people anything you can figure out by Googling it.  
*Working out regularly really helps with your presentation because you will naturally stand taller and appear more formidable and healthy. There’s this phenomenon among VCs that any entrepreneur who looks like Mark Zuckerberg gets funded. In my opinion, most fit techies look like Mark Zuckerberg.

**The first golden rule is a bit of a nebulous concept for those who haven’t been practicing.  I suggest getting started by trying to think of three things you can do for everyone you meet and make introductions as often as possible – without forcing it of course.  When in doubt, you can ask “Is there anything I can do for you?”, but this is a bit of a lazy way out – come prepared with ideas!!

The New Normal

The New Normal in Marketing
by Amoor Avakian

Through great understanding of marketing principles and new technologies we (marketeers) have actually severely complicated the entire landscape.

At the same time through many data liberation initiatives and an ever transparent web our consuming would-be-customers are able stay fully updated on all kinds of persuasion tactics and are teaching their friends, families and connections how to fight back.

From ad blockers to “Do not track”, opt-out settings and cookie laws or simply ignoring anything off to the side of the prime screen-estate they have become immune to spammy messages and hollow promises of our gadgets and services they can’t live without. We find ourselves in an adversary position to the very people we need to reach and connect. That’s crazy.

So how do you reach out to communities to build long term ROI positive and mutually beneficial relationships? How do you learn the right thing in an incredibly abundant common-wealth of experience and knowledge? Lastly, how do you defuse all that is right and relevant to your business throughout your company?

Golden Triangle

The good news is you’re not alone, this is one of the key discussion sessions of ProductCamp Yerevan and you’re welcome to join!

You can participate in our (and your) unconference as we take on the toughest problems facing marketing, product management and entrepreneurship today.

Register at and get your free ticket now!

Scaling on up…

When a business is in its start up phase its simple; The entrepreneur is involved in every aspect of the business and most everything can be done by the boss. Save for some exceptions and the cases of selling the skills of the entrepreneur as a professional service, this period of innocence is usually (hopefully) short lived and is followed either by sudden death or the need to scale up. If you are at the threshold of turning from a small business to a medium sized enterprise here are some tips for paving your way into a smooth transition.

Get a loyal core team – Your business is entering a phase where it is going to be harder and harder to personally pay proper attention to everyone that comes and goes. Know who your loyal team is and never forget that loyalty is a two way street. Don’t spare any time or resource to get to know your core team and invest into their development. This will show a genuine dedication and will be rewarded generously.

Trust, delegate and switch from visual to instrument flight – If once you knew every customer and the entire history and nuances of their purchase, it is not humanly possible to have this information in your head and deal with situations when you have tens of thousands of customers. This means that you have to delegate not only tasks but also the authority to make decisions. Beware of the entrepreneur’s tendency to micromanage. You will feel like you can do things better than everyone else but you are probably wrong, nobody will do things exactly as you would but at the end of the day they will probably do a great job in their area of expertise and let you focus on actually running and growing the company.

Getting good people on-board – Its cute and all when you are the smartest person on board when you first launch your company but you should be working on changing this very early on by coming in contact with and attracting talented people as early as possible. If you have tens of thousands of customers and your turn over is in the millions and you are still the smartest person at the company then start worrying, you are probably not running at optimal thrust and are headed for stalled growth in the near future. Go to events, network, advertise and interview. Get smart people on board, you will find a use for them.

Invest into technology – You don’t have to build software yourself but no matter what you do, even if you are in a more traditional branch like pharma or real estate, every business needs good software to run on. Your software will always be the most scalable part of your business, so when you are ready to scale up be sure to have a stellar software backbone.

Identify the gaps that affect the quality of your service or product and build systems to plug the big holes – If quality assurance is an unknown discipline to you now is a good time to get to know it. Remember, quality pays for itself and is the only option for a business that plans to be around for a while. Learn how to perform root cause analysis, implement systems for continuous improvement with corrective and preventive actions, perform risk analysis and listen and react to your customers’ complaints.

Of products and product managers

The New Normal in Marketing
by Khachik Badeyan


Gone are the days when a boss would sit in an armchair in his cozy room isolated from his employees who are just a cog in the mechanism generating money for the former. What matters nowadays is the team and the management.

A good manager is the one who can outsource as much routine and repetitive tasks to his employees and respective departments as possible. However in the case of CEO or any high rank manager even that is not enough as there is a need to monitor all the job done and the product progress. If we look even further – when a new project starts the high rank managers won’t have enough time to monitor all change and keep up with the daily tasks.

Who are Product Managers?

Product managers are people who grow products, whose each decision is based on numbers, on analytics and logical reasoning. The product is their sun and they revolve around it. Their sole goal is the product growth.

Every product manager has KPIs and all of them unite in one term named growth.

What is Product?

As stated by Simon Sinek in his why/how/what presentation at TED it does not matter what you offer to people, if you don’t know why they should want have it, and how you shall make the product exist and deliver them to customers. A product is the feeling, an urgent need to have the thing a company can offer.

Companies shall never proceed to thinking about how to deliver a commodity to the customer before

  1. creating an itch or finding a pain that troubles many
  2. putting the product there to comfort those
  3. creating an emotional bond

Product Growth.

No matter what is the product and what are the KPIs of a product thes 3 steps are crucial to every growth strategy

  • Getting Visitors
    make people see your product
  • Activating Members
    make people take action
  • Activating Users
    make people believe in your product

The most important for doing the above of course is having the right data and the right tools to analyse it. Implementing the analyitics is one of the most important tasks of a product manager.

A thing to remember – product manager without numbers is a disaster.

The Team

The 2 cornerstones of hiring:

  1. CEOs hire Product Managers who know more than them.
  2. Product Managers hire those who know what they don’t and do what they don’t (want to) do.

The big problem with old style business was that only people with lower than the employer qualifications would be hired (mostly). But the progress shows that managers shall hire people from whom learning something is possible.


The next big piece in this game is the time management. The product manager shall automate whatever actions is possible (paying bills, sending response emails to customers, shipping) and outsource as much action to his employees as possible.

Often employees need to decide whether to accept the money transaction or the refund dispute or reject it? In the old style business all employees need permission from superior officers. The new business on the other hand won’t work like that: employees shall inherit a part of the decision making permissions from higher ranked personnel. The last also creates ground for the employees to grow both as professionals and business owners (by the means of being part of the decision making process).

Product manager suggests but does not force. All in all the best Product Manager is the one who leaves the company and nothing breaks.