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The Official Saastr Podcast: SaaS | Founders | Investors

The Official Saastr Podcast is the latest and greatest from the world of Saastr, interviewing the most prominent operators and investors to discover their tips, tactics and strategies to attain success in the fiercely competitive world of SaaS. On the side of the operators, we centre around getting from $0 to $100m ARR faster, what it takes to scale successfully and what are the core elements of hiring. As for the investors, we learn what metrics they hone in on when examining SaaS business, what type of metrics excites them and what they look for in SaaS founders.
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Now displaying: Category: business
Jul 15, 2019

Peter Yared is the Founder & CEO @ InCountry, the startup that allows you to operate globally with data residency as a service meaning they store your mission-critical data in it’s country of origin, without compliance. To date, Peter has raised $8m for InCountry from some of my very favourites including Bloomberg Beta, Felicis, Ray Tonsing @ Caffeinated and CRV just to name a few. Prior to InCountry, Peter founded six and sold 6 enterprise software companies that were acquired by Sun, Citrix, VMware, Oracle, Sprinklr and Prograph. Previously, Peter was also the CTO/CIO of CBS Interactive where he brought CBS into the cloud. At Sun, Peter was the CTO of the Liberty identity consortium that designed SAML 2.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How did Peter make his way into the world of enterprise SaaS with the founding and selling of 6 companies and how did InCountry come about? What is that founding moment?
  • Why does Peter feel like it enterprise is really hard again? Why is it no longer to come into large enterprises with a small contract and expand? How does Peter think about enterprise pilots today? Do they really mean anything? What proof points suggest an enterprise is really bought in? What benchmarks should startups bake into the agreements? 
  • How does Peter think about and approach market sizing today? Why is market risk no longer a risk he is willing to take? Where do many entrepreneurs make mistakes when it comes to market timing? In terms of timing, how should entrepreneurs think about whether to start at SMB and move to enterprise or start enterprise and move to SMB? What are the considerations? 
  • Why does Peter believe that large orgs are so dysfunctional today? What can founders do to extract the truly special talent out of these large orgs with big pay packets and troves of options? How has Peter found the transition from CTO to CEO this time? What have been some of the challenges? Where has he asked for external help? 
  • Having built numerous successful remote teams, what have been Peter’s biggest learnings in what it takes to successfully build remote teams? Where do many people go wrong? Does it have to be from Day 1? When is the right time to start thinking about this as a startup?  

Peter’s 60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What would Peter most like to change about the world of Silicon Valley and tech?
  2. Who is the biggest rockstar in the valley that is less well known?
  3. Hire fast, fire fast, agree or disagree? 

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Peter Yared

Jul 11, 2019

Erica has led New Relic through massive growth, scaling the company’s enterprise business 10x since she joined the business pre-IPO. Growing a company’s revenues, customer base, team, process, and product doesn’t just happen without major work and strategy. Erica will share the five critical steps (and some lessons learned along the way) for scaling in the enterprise.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Erica talks about:

  • How to change up your marketing mix
  • How to transition from SMB to enterprise
  • Identifying your sweet spot target customers and leveraging your network to access those companies.

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Jul 8, 2019

Joe Chernov is the VP Marketing @ Pendo, the startup that understands and guides your users allowing you to create products they cannot live without. To date they have raised over $108m in funding from some of the best in SaaS including Meritech, Salesforce, Battery, Spark Capital and Sapphire just to name a few. Prior to Pendo Joe was Chief Marketing Officer at Robin and before that he was the CMO @ InsightSquared where he led the transition from an email-driven leads model to an account-based marketing model. Before InsightSquared, Joe was Head of Content Marketing at Hubspot where he increased blog traffic by more than 1M visits/month and increased leads by 40%. Finally, pre-Hubspot, Joe held VP of Marketing roles at Kinvey and Eloqua.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Joe made his way into the world of startups and SaaS marketing many years ago? Does Joe really believe in the saying that, “no one really knows what they are doing?” Where are the nuances to it?
  • Joe has been CMO and then #2 and alternated between the 2 roles many times, so what the continuous alternating? How does switching from CMO to VP of Marketing prepare you better for each subsequent role? Does Joe agree with the saying that the best in marketing are able to “throw the playbook out of the window”? 
  • What does Joe mean when he says, “the most powerful mentorship is mentorship from below”? What makes the best #2’s just so good? What do they do? What advice would Joe give to a #2 in a role today? What can the individuals do to foster a relationship of deep trust and transparency?
  • Having worked at both early and late stage companies, what does Joe believe the early companies can learn from later stage companies? Does installing very severe ops not reduce the creativity of a young company? What does Joe believe that later stage companies can really learn and take from early-stage companies? 
  • How do the marketing functions differ in both structure and process when comparing early to late stage? What does Joe find to be the biggest challenge within each respective stage? How has Joe seen the content landscape evolve and change radically throughout his career alternating between early and late stage companies?  

Joe’s 60 Second SaaStr:

  1. Who does Joe believe is killing it in SaaS marketing now? Why?
  2. ABM, total BS or real meaning to it?
  3. If Joe could change one thing about SaaS today, what would it be?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Joe Chernov

Jul 4, 2019

Hear from Hired's CEO Mehul Patel on how to move from transactional to recurring revenue. Hired is a marketplace that matches tech talent with innovative companies. Hired combines job matching with unbiased career counseling to help people find a job they love. Through Hired, job candidates and companies have transparency into salary offers, competing opportunities and job details.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Mehul talks about:

  • How to leverage your company values to drive stability.
  • Hiring people, strategically.
  • Finding your pricing sweet spot.

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Jun 27, 2019

Dropbox Chief Customer Officer Yamini Rangan draws on 20 years of experience to challenge five common misconceptions about SaaS success. From beating the competition to over (or under) relying on Outbound, she offers a practical perspective on the frameworks that are holding businesses back from reaching their full potential in a changing landscape.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Yamini talks about:

  • How to increase the odds of reaching $1B in ARR
  • What is the pull upmarket, why do companies focus their attention there?
  • Common go-to-market myths and lessons.

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

 

Jun 24, 2019

David Skok is a serial entrepreneur turned VC at Matrix Partners. He founded four companies: Skok Systems, Corporate Software Europe, Watermark Software, and SilverStream Software and did one turnaround with Xionics. Three of the companies he founded went public and one was acquired.

Jason Lemkin is the Founder @ SaaStr, the world’s largest SaaS community and leading early-stage SaaS fund with investments in Automile, TalkDesk, Algolia and more.

Jason Vandeboom is the Founder of ActiveCampaign, a sales and marketing automation platform that enables small businesses around the world to meaningfully connect and engage with their customers. Since 2013 with their transition to SaaS have grown to more than $50 million in ARR in less than five years, while maintaining profitability.

Dave Kellogg is a leading technology executive, independent board member, advisor and angel investor. In his most recent role, Dave was the CEO @ Host Analytics where he quintupled ARR, halved customer acquisition costs and increased net retention rates before selling the company to a private equity sponsor.

Fred Shilmover is the CEO and co-founder of InsightSquared, one of Boston’s premiere tech startups paving the way in the sales intelligence space. Throughout the InsightSquared journey, Fred has raised over $25m in VC funding from the likes of DFJ, Bessemer, Salesforce and Atlas Venture.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • Does David Skok believe that ACV should sit at the top of the metrics stack? What are the 4 metrics that fundamentally matter in your business? What can founders do to their pricing model to extract as much value from each customer? How do the very best businesses structure their pricing for value extraction?
  • If ACV increase is a core focus for our startup, should we hire a sales rep solely selling to enterprise? What are the biggest mistakes founders make in this scenario? What can founders do to optimise revenue per lead? How does on need o approach lead targeting according to the individual skills of their reps?
  • Is it best to start at enterprise and work down to SMB or does SMB and work up to enterprise work best? How does the product have to change with the scaling to enterprise? How does the messaging need to change with the scaling to enterprise? How do you need this change to be reflected in your pricing?    
  • What does it truly mean to be an ARR first company? What is the right way for founders to calculate their differing ACVs? What is the right way to present that when pitching VCs? Where do many founders go wrong in how they present and discus ACVs with investors?
Jun 19, 2019

Ryan Petersen will share what he has learned about scaling culture, expanding globally, raising venture capital (or not), and using technology to improve legacy industries.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Ryan talks about:

  • How Flexport grew to a multibillion-dollar business.
  • How the company broke into the $2T freight forwarding industry.

 

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Ryan Petersen

Jun 13, 2019

It’s the employees’ market. There are more jobs than there are qualified people to do them. SaaS companies face sustained headwinds in the attracting, cultivating, driving productivity, and retaining talent. Your market competitors are your adversaries, but so is the entrepreneur sitting right next to you whose business is in a completely different sector. Elisa shares practical advice on how to win three key Talentshare battles, which are essential to winning the Marketshare war.

Missed the session? Here’s what Elisa talks about:

  • How to win Talentshare when the system is stacked against you.
  • How to drive synchronization, productivity when your needs are constantly evolving and the talent mix is incredibly fluid and diverse.
  • How to use Culture as the lever to maximize the ROI that you get out of the biggest investment your business will ever make.

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Elisa Steele

Jun 10, 2019

Dave Kellogg is a leading technology executive, independent board member, advisor and angel investor. In his most recent role, Dave was the CEO @ Host Analytics where he quintupled ARR, halved customer acquisition costs and increased net retention rates before selling the company to a private equity sponsor. Before that Dave was SVP/GM of Service Cloud @ Salesforce where he led the $500m line of business for customer service applications. Finally pre-Salesforce, Dave was CEO @ MarkLogic where he grew the team from 40 to 240 and revenues from $0 to an $80m revenue run rate. If that was not enough, Dave currently or has previously sat on the boards of Nuxeo, Alation, Aster Data and Granular.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How did Dave make his way into the world of SaaS over 20 years ago? How did seeing the boom and bust of the dot com and 2008 affect Dave’s operating mentality?
  • What were his biggest lessons from being in the Sequoia boardroom when they presented “RIP good time”? How does Dave think about when is the right time to raise? How does Dave advise founders on how much is the right amount to raise? Does Dave agree that if the money is on the table founding teams should take it? Why does Dave believe 99% of companies die?
  • The first step in being acquired by a PE house is “making the book”, what goes into “making the book”? Who is involved? How long does it take? What are the clear differences between a good book and a bad book? How should execs think about making exciting enough go-forward plans for it to be attractive to buyers but also realistic enough that they can hit it in the acquisition process?  
  • How does the selection for who receives the book look? Who decides this? What is the fundamental aim in the distribution of the book to many parties at the same time? What does Dave know now about the world of PE that he wishes he had known at the beginning? IOI’s is the next step, what are they? How do they set up the process from there?
  • How do management meetings with potential PE acquiring firms compare to founders meeting VCs in the early days? How many meetings is normal to have in this process? How long do they last? What does Dave believe is crucial to achieve in these in person meetings? How much of a role does price play in selecting the ultimate acquiror? How much of a role does their brand and reputation play?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Dave know about the process that he wishes he had known at the beginning?
  2. The biggest misconception about the world of PE and acquisitions?
  3. Burn rate is a function of the personality of the CEO? Agree or disagree? Why?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Dave Kellogg

Jun 3, 2019

Amit Bendov is the Founder and CEO @ Gong.io, the startup that provides you with powerful visibility into your customer conversations with conversation intelligence. To date, Amit has raised $68m in funding for Gong from the likes of Norwest, Battery Ventures, Cisco Investments and Wing Venture Capital just to name a few. As for Amit, prior to founding Gong, Amit was the CEO @ SiSense BI software that enables business users to connect to multiple databases of any size. Before that Amit was the CMO @ Panaya, helping companies that use SAP or Oracle to reduce 80% of their ERP upgrade. Finally before that Amit was the Founder & CEO @ SparkThis, an outsourced marketing and sales service for cloud companies.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Amit made his way into the world of SaaS and came to found Gong, the leader in conversational intelligence driving deal conversion and rep success?
  • How does Amit approach the process of idea validation? What can founders do to make sure their idea is a hit before they start work on it? How many customer conversations should they have? What questions are crucial to ask? What are the answers they want to hear? What is enough proof that there is a ready and willing customer base for this idea?  
  • With many products starting as free, how does Amit think about when is the right time to start charging for your product? What does Amit think about the differing variable price mechanisms that one can choose? How does one have a variable pricing mechanism without disincentivizing users to use the product? What does Amit advise founders should charge in the early days? Should they leave money on the table?
  • How does Amit think about monthly/vs annual deals? What are the core benefits and drawbacks of each? How important is it that multi-year deals are paid upfront? What must you account for with regards to multi-year deals? How do you know when you have the right pricing mechanism in place from the sales cycles of the reps?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Amit know now that he wishes he had known in the beginning?
  2. The hardest role to hire for today?
  3. The hardest element of Amit’s role as CEO of Gong?
  4. SDR is the most important function in the sales org, agree or not and why?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Amit Bendov

May 30, 2019

Join Molly Ford, Salesforce Global Equality Programs Senior Director, and Leyla Seka, Salesforce VP of Mobile for actionable advice they have applied on their own journey. Here are their lessons learned on driving change in gender equality, equal pay and racial equality within Salesforce.

Missed the session? Here’s what Molly and Leyla talk about:

  • Building a community of allies and allyship
  • How to drive equality
  • What you can be doing as an employee to help drive the culture you want

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Molly Ford

Leyla Seka

 

May 27, 2019

Parker Conrad is the Founder & CEO @ Rippling, the startup that gives you back your time from payroll to employee computers, Rippling makes it unbelievably easy to manage your company’s HR and IT - in one system. To date Parker has raised over $59m in funding from some of the best in the business including Mamoon @ Kleiner Perkins, Garry Tan @ Initialized, Justin Kan, SV Angel and Y Combinator, just to name a few. As for Parker, prior to founding Rippling, he was the Founder & CEO @ Zenefits, the startup he built from $0 to $60m in ARR in just 3 years. Before that he co-founded Sigfig where he grew assets on the platform to over $35Bn across 500k users.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Parker made his way into the world of startups and SaaS, came to found Zenefits and what was that a-ha moment for the founding of his most recent company, Rippling?
  • What does Parker do with regards to operational scaling that is unconventional but works? Why does Parker believe it is fundamentally better to wait for as long as possible before hiring customer support? Why should engineers also be doing customer support?  
  • Why should your engineers be heavily involved in the customer support hiring process? What are the benefits of this? How can one prevent their customer support team from being a wall of protection for the product and eng team? How can you ensure seamless collaboration and communication flow between product and customer support?
  • Stripe last week recently announced their 5th office would be… “remote”, so how does Parker feel about the building of remote teams? What are the most important things when establishing your first remote team? What do you look for in those hires? What can be done to ensure a greater feeling of community and closeness despite the distance? What have been some of the biggest challenges for Parker in building out the remote team?
  • Parker has been a CEO with 3 different companies now and so how has he seen his style and approach change over the years? What has Parker found the hardest to get good at? When advising founders on fundraising, what advice does he give? How can founders know when is the right time to raise? How should they look to build relationships with investors between raises?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Parker know now that he wishes he had known in the beginning?
  2. What one thing would Parker like to change about tech and Silicon Valley?
  3. Biggest mentor and what has Parker learned from them?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Parker Conrad

May 23, 2019

Join Logikcull's CEO and Co-Founder Andy Wilson as he takes you through the mistakes made going from $0 to $10M in 19 months.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Andy talks about:

  • Selling the way your customers want to buy.
  • What you need to know about hiring, firing, advisors, and culture
  • Why SaaS is your business model, not your mission.

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Andy Wilson

May 20, 2019

Andrew Filev is the Founder & CEO @ Wrike, the cloud based collaboration and project management software that scales across teams in any business. In Dec 2008, Vista Equity Partners acquired a majority stake in Wrike for a deal reportedly valuing the company at $800m. Before this transaction, Andrew had raised over $45m in funding from the likes of Rory @ Scale and Bain Capital Ventures just to name a few. As for Andrew, he started his first software development company at the age of 18 and has been running Wrike for the last 13 years alongside advisory roles with both Ditto and Appulate.  

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Andrew made his way into the world of SaaS from his starting his first software business at the age of just 18 and how that led to his founding of Wrike?
  • How does Andrew advise founders on the question of whether to start in enterprise or SMB? What are the benefits of starting in SMB? How does the founder know when is the right time to start moving to enterprise? What are those leading indicators? How does the product and what you invest in proactively need to change as you move into enterprise?     
  • Andrew has been the CEO for the last 13 years, how has the role of CEO changed over those years? What has been the most challenging phase? If the CEO is the guardian of the culture, what does a great guardian look like? What 3 elements does Andrew focus almost exclusively on today within his role as CEO?    
  • What does Andrew think are the major breaking points in the scaling of companies? Where does culture begin to breakdown? What can be done to mitigate this? How does Andrew think about using employee satisfaction surveys internally? How can one accurately determine the strength of your manager set?

Andrew’s 60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Andrew know now that he wishes he had known at the beginning?
  2. No man’s land in SaaS pricing, does it exist?
  3. Sales rep productivity, what is good to Andrew?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Andrew Filev

May 16, 2019

Duo Security Co-Founder and CEO Dug Song and PagerDuty CEO Jennifer Tejada discuss building, enabling, and leading great teams through 10K+ customers, $100M+ ARR, $1B+ valuation and beyond - all while earning 4.5+ Glassdoor company ratings and 98%+ CEO approvals from 500+ total employees!

 

Duo Security is a cloud-based provider of unified access security and multifactor authentication was acquired by Cisco for $2.35 billion in October 2018. PagerDuty is a leading digital operations management platform for organizations announced new financing in September 2018 at a $1.3 billion valuation.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Jennifer and Dug talk about:

  • When is the right time to raise money?
  • How can you better manage the board?
  • Should you worry about competitors?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Jennifer Tejada

Dug Song

May 9, 2019

Dave Kellogg is CEO of Host Analytics and prolific blogger. Join him as he takes you through lessons learned from Host Analytics on the top questions every SaaS CEO wrestles with. Dave was CEO of Host Analytics from 2012 to 2018 where he quintupled ARR while halving customer acquisition costs in a highly competitive market, ultimately selling the company in a private equity transaction.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Dave talks about:

  • When is the right time to raise money?
  • How can you better manage the board?
  • Should you worry about competitors?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Dave Kellogg

May 6, 2019

Jason Reichl is the Founder & CEO @ GoNimbly, the first SaaS consultancy to focus on revenue operations. Currently growing 100% year over year, working with companies to un-silo their operations and create one strategic revenue ops team to support their Go To Market strategy. In the past, Go Nimbly has helped companies like Zendesk, Twilio, PagerDuty and Coursera to achieve alignment and increase revenue by 26%. As for Jason, prior to co-founding GoNimbly, he was Director of Product Management @ TradeShift and before that was VP of Product Management @ Lanetix.  

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Jason made his way from Director of Product Management at Tradeshift to changing the way we think about scaling revenue operations with GoNimbly?
  • Why does Jason believe that we have to remote handoffs between go to market teams? Why are they so damaging? How does Jason believe SaaS companies can use a “swarming” effect to create the best buyer experience for their customer? What does this involve? How does this change the type of metrics that we track?
  • Why does Jason believe that your North Star has to be revenue in the go to market teams? Why does Jason also believe that it is damaging to have the same North Star across the entire company? How should North Star’s be segregated between GTM teams and biz ops teams? What are the mistakes many companies make when setting their internal North Stars?
  • Why does Jason believe that alignment is a dirty word? Why is alignment actually a negative for the customer experience? What does Jason view as vanity metrics? If one has vanity metrics in place, what does Jason recommend as to keeping them or phasing them out?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Jason know now that he wishes he had known in the beginning?
  2. How does Jason feel about multi-year deals?
  3. How does Jason feel about channel/partner sellers?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

May 2, 2019

We live in a Shark Tank world: competition is fierce, talent is better than ever, and we’re all striving to come out on top. CEOs everywhere are seeking to innovate, but 81% say their teams are not equipped to meet the challenges needed to compete in today’s marketplace.

 

Innovation is about empathy with your customers. It's all about customer obsession! In this session, Sandy Carter, AWS Vice President will hone your superpower - not of customer focus, or customer driven, but customer obsessed.

 

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Sandy talks about:

  • How to start with success and think backwards
  • Think about how to present a feature or product before you start building.

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Sandy Carter

Apr 22, 2019

Alexandr Wang is the Founder & CEO @ Scale, the startup providing high quality training and validation data for AI applications. To date, Alexandr has raised over $23m with Scale from some of the best in the business including Index, Accel, Y Combinator, Dropbox’s Drew Houston, Justin Kan, Thumbtack’s Jonathan Swanson and more. Prior to founding Scale, Alexandr was a Tech Lead at Quora, directly responsible for all speed projects and before that a software engineer at Addepar responsible for building and maintaining financial models.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How did Alex make his way into the world of SaaS and come to found Scale? What were some of his biggest takeaways from seeing the first hand scaling of Quora and Addepar?
  • Why does Alex take the contrarian view that “TAM in the traditional sense barely matter”? What two characteristics of the market should founders really look to examine? How does Alex approach the element of market sizing? Does he prefer top down or bottoms up and why?
  • Why does Alex believe that you must invest in customer success before you think you need it? What were the benefits for Alex of investing early in customer success? Why does CS over sales ultimately drive the growth of your company? How does one know when is the right time to hire their first in customer success? What is the ideal profile of this candidate?
  • How does Alex think about the integration of customer success and product teams? Why is it crucial from the product perspective that founders pick their first customers well? How can your customers drive your product decisions? How can one ensure to be customer informed and not customer driven?     
  • Why does Alex believe that in the early days it is not important to focus on the size of the deals you are signing? What should founders be focusing on with these early customers instead? When is the right time to flip the switch and opt for value extraction as a more primary objective? How does Alex respond to the fact that VCs often look at these first customer deals as an indication of the size of the pain point you are solving?  

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Alex know now that he wishes he had known in the beginning?
  2. What does Alex believe is the hardest role to hire for today?
  3. Who does Alex think is crushing it in the world of SaaS today?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Alexandr Wang

Apr 18, 2019

Leela Srinivasan is the CMO of SurveyMonkey. Join her as she takes you through her seven tips for using customer feedback and building rabid fans. Consistently ramping your ARR is a whole lot harder if your customers don’t stick around. In an age where earning customer loyalty and trust is harder than ever, the road to lifetime value is paved with customer feedback. If you take the time to listen, understand and act on what your customers are thinking and feeling, you’ll create an army of advocates and drive topline revenue growth for good measure.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Leela talks about:

  • How to create an army of advocates
  • How to drive topline revenue growth
  • Real world examples from businesses that are listening and acting on customer feedback every day.

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Leela Srinivasan

 

Apr 15, 2019

Stephen Burton is VP of Smarketing at Harness, the industry’s first continuous delivery as a service platform. To date, Harness has raised $20m in funding from the wonderful Matt Murphy @ Menlo Ventures and BIG Labs. Prior to Harness, Stephen was VP of Marketing at Glassdoor, managing a team of 52 in product marketing, helping grow B2B revenue from $19m to $90m in just 2 years, leading to their $1.2Bn acquisition. Before Glassdoor, Stephen was VP of Product Marketing at AppDynamics where he helped grow B2B revenue from $0 to $100m in a staggering 3 year period, resulting in their $3.9Bn acquisition by Cisco.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Steve made his way into the world of SaaS and came to be VP of marketing at 2 of the larger B2B exits of the last decade in AppDynamics and Glassdoor? What were Steve’s biggest takeaways from seeing the hyper-scaling at AppDynamics?
  • Steve has previously said, “sales and marketing must be one team”. Why does he believe this is so important? What can leaders do to turn this into reality? What works? Where has Steve seen many make mistakes? Where does Steve find common points of tension between sales and marketing? WHat are the 3 elements that marketing comp should be tied and aligned to?
  • What does Steve mean when he says, “marketers need to embrace the developer first mindset”? What does this mean for the processes used by marketing teams? Speaking of developer-first, how can startups compete in a war for talent against FB and Google? How can they integrate autonomy into their hiring process as a core advantage?     
  • For Steve, what does devops really mean? What does Steve believe is the right culture for devops teams? Does it differ from traditional dev teams? How can a CEO determine when is the right time to fundamentally invest in devops? What are the required steps to make devops teams as successful as possible?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Steve know now that she wishes she had known at the beginning?
  2. When is the right time to pour fuel on the company fire?
  3. The playbook? Is there one? Dangers? Copyability?
  4. What would Steve most like to change in the world of SaaS?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Stephen Burton

 

Apr 4, 2019

Karen Peacock is COO of Intercom, one of the fastest growing SaaS businesses of all time. She has led businesses of all sizes through massive growth.  Listen to her top 5 lessons learned building and scaling SaaS businesses from $1M to $500M in ARR including expanding to serve upmarket customers, moving from product to platform, and hiring to drive breakthrough customer experiences and business growth.

Missed the session? Here’s what Karen talks about:

  • How should you expand your market?
  • How to move upmarket
  • The steps to building a product and creating an end to end experience

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Karen Peacock

Apr 3, 2019

Ben Braverman is the CRO @ Flexport, one of the world’s fastest growing startups combining technology, infrastructure and expertise, to build the operating system for global trade. To date they have $1.35Bn in funding from some of the biggest and best in the business including Softbank’s Vision Fund, Founders Fund, DST, Susa Ventures and Y Combinator, just to name a few. As for Ben, he spearheads global sales and go to market teams. Prior to Flexport, Ben helped drive two high-growth companies to successful acquisitions: URX (acquired by Pinterest) and Heyzap (acquired by Fyber).

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Ben made his way into the world of startups and came to be CRO of one of the world’s fastest growing startups in the form of Flexport?
  • Why does Ben fundamentally disagree with the specialisation of roles within SaaS companies? What does he believes this does to the customer journey and relationship? How should one thing about role segmentation and allocation of accounts with this in mind? Where does Ben see many people going wrong here?
  • Why does Ben believe it is “total horseshit to say the best sellers don’t make the best managers”? What must founders try and figure out before hiring their sales leader? What are the leading indicators that suggest a sales rep has the ability to be a sales manager? How does Ben determine between a stretch VP and a stretch too far?   
  • What does Ben mean when he says, “there are 3 distinct buckets of sales management”? What are they and what is their relationship between one another? Why does Ben believe one does not need sales management in the early days? What is the best way to train reps and determine payback period fast? Why does Ben believe sales ops is the most underappreciated role in the valley?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Ben know now that he wishes she had known at the beginning?
  2. What is the optimal relationship between CRO and CEO?
  3. What does Ben believe in SaaS that most around his disbelieve?

 

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Ben Braverman

Mar 28, 2019

Mark Roberge is a senior lecturer with Harvard Business School, former CRO of Hubspot and author of the bestseller "The Sales Acceleration Formula". Join him as he takes you through his step by step guide to revenue growth.

 

Missed the session? Here’s what Mark talks about:

  • An in-depth guide to driving revenue growth by company stage
  • When to scale and how fast
  • Product market fit, go-to market fit during the experiment stages

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

SaaStr

Mark Roberge

Mar 25, 2019

Leyla Seka is the executive vice president of the Salesforce Mobile platform experience. Over Leyla’s incredible 11 year journey with Salesforce she has seen the team scale from 1,800 to over 40,000 and revenue scale from $500m to over $16Bn. In Leyla’s role today, she leads the charge on extending the power of Salesforce with a full portfolio of mobile apps, and is responsible for driving product, go-to-market and other key programs around Salesforce’s mobile offerings. Prior to her current role, Leyla was executive vice president of the Salesforce AppExchange, where she launched a refreshed AppExchange storefront, a new partner program, and built an entire AppExchange-focused team, resulting in more than 4,000 solutions, installed nearly 6 million times. Beyond her day-to-day role, Leyla is also the executive sponsor of BOLDforce, Salesforce’s organization for expanding and empowering the black community at Salesforce.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Leyla made her way into the world of SaaS with Salesforce when it had 1,800 people and $500m in revenue?
  • What were Leyla’s biggest learnings on people and business model through seeing the first hand hyper-scaling of Salesforce from $500m to $16Bn? How did Leyla evolve and scale as a leader herself in those 11 years? What advice does Leyla give to young people considering whether to found a startup, join a startup or join a hyper-growth company?
  • Where do things start to break in the scaling of SaaS companies? What needs to be put in place to prepare for hyper-scale? What are the commonalities of where many founders go wrong in the scaling process?  
  • What does Leyla mean when she says, “growing up in product, you have to lead through influence”? How does Leyla think this influence can be created and maintained? How does Leyla think about the balance between effective influence and excessive influence?  
  • Why does Leyla believe that, “you can teach skills but you cannot teach empathy”? What have been her learnings from scaling teams when it comes to hiring and detecting candidates with true empathy? What can one do to nurture that empathy in the culture of the company?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Leyla know now that she wishes she had known at the beginning?
  2. What is the hardest element of Leyla’s role at Salesforce today?
  3. What does Leyla believe in SaaS that most around her disbelieve?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Leyla Seka

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