A Product Manager's Guide to Web3

A Product Manager’s Guide to Web3

You’ve probably heard the huge buzz around web3 and NFT’s. Truth is, they’re exploding!

In 2021, web3 investment and job postings both grew by a massive 400%, which illustrates just how much these areas are taking off.

But what does this mean for Product Managers in the tech space? Below I take a brief look at the following points: 

  • What is web3?
  • How is Product Management different at a web3 start-up?
  • Pros and Cons of being a web3 Product Manager


What is web3?

First of all, we had web1, which is simply the internet we all know and use. Then there was web2, which referred to the user-generated web, driven by the use of social media platforms. Now, tech leaders are all talking about web3, the next evolution of the internet.
According to Forbes: “Web3 is currently a work-in-progress and isn’t exactly defined yet. However, the main principle is that it will be decentralized – rather than controlled by governments and corporations, as is the case with today’s internet – and, to some extent, connected to the concept of the “metaverse."

How is Product Management different at a web3 start-up?

Product Managers are quite rare in the web3 space. This might be because Product managers aren’t as necessary for the web3 0-1 phase, and web3 businesses are only likely to hire a Product Manager at one of three stages: 

  1. Engineering team becomes too large to prioritise and coordinate projects
  2. The product experience or suite becomes too large or complex
  3. There’s a mix of customer-facing tasks that a single specialist cannot manage

Therefore, whilst Product Manager’s aren’t always required in the first stages of a web3 startup, they do quickly become important, especially if the company is fast moving and fast growing. And, whilst web3 Product Managers are still responsible for driving outcomes within the business, there are three distinct differences. 

In oversimplified terms, Web3 PMs are responsible for the success of communities rather than increasing acquisition, engagement, or revenue.

Web3 Product Management is much more versatile, as Product Managers are likely to also be responsible for partnerships, community management, and incentives, meaning that they require a broader and more flexible skillset.

Web3 Product Management is also more art than science. This is because there is very little user data due to small user bases. Therefore, a Product Manager needs to rely on their intuition and strong decision-making skills in an environment that is highly ambiguous.

Finally, web3 Product Management is often more communal and public. This is because discussions, user feedback and more, is often managed through channels such as Discord, Telegram, or Slack, which creates inclusivity on one hand, but also demands the Product Manager to be effective at that community management.


Pros and Cons of Becoming a Web3 Product Manager

Web3 Product Managers can expect a promising career path and lots of excitement as they work in this new, fast-moving space:

  • You’re building the next generation of the internet
  • You will have a huge impact on this new space. You get the chance to put your stamp on it
  • Your role is so diverse! Expect to be managing aspects of product, partnerships, growth hacking, community management, and even meme-making
  • Learning and Development is a given, every step of the way
  • It’s fun and exciting

However, web3 Product Management can be hard to get your head around and does have some draw backs: 

  • Get ready to start again. Web3 is so different, that you will likely need to learn new skills
  • It is nonstop and can be exhausting if workload, work life balance, and holidays are not properly managed
  • There’s very little data to utilise for experimentation, which is usually a Product Managers most valuable asset
  • Learning new terminologies, jargon, and frameworks including token prices, airdrops, floor prices and so on
  • You probably won’t feel as important as engineers, community leaders, and artists, so you need to be confident and low-ego

Sound like the perfect next step for you?

If you’re ready to take the next step into Web3 Product Management this year, or are looking at taking your next career step more generally, get in touch with to hear more about our exciting new roles across the North-West Product space or browse our current opportunities on our website.

Alternatively if you’re looking to hire exceptional Product talent to drive product delivery in your organisation, reach out to find out more about how Maxwell Bond, the tech and digital recruitment partner of choice, has helped other businesses just like yours find the top tech talent on the Product market, whilst reducing time to hire, cutting recruitment costs, and improving employer branding. Get in touch today.