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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: August, 2016
Aug 29, 2016

Jon Herstein is the Senior Vice President of Customer Success at Box where Jon works to ensure that all of Box's Enterprise and Business customers are phenomenally successful. Jon has worked with some of the biggest names in the tech world, including Accenture, Informatica and most recently NetSuite, where he served as VP of Professional Services for North America and EMEA. Before NetSuite, Jon led the turnaround of Informatica's European consulting practice during a multi-year expatriate assignment, which eventually led to a 65% jump in revenue.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

  • How Jon made his way into the newly created category of customer success?
  • How does Box define customer success and how does that impact their view and approach to the SaaS industry?
  • Box has gone through the definition of private hypergrowth and is now in the next phase as a public company - how has that affected the CSM strategy?
  • Box now have some very large accounts, how do you distinguish between the role of sales vs CS in large accounts? How do they partner to drive expansion?
  • Jon is renowned for prioritizing career paths for his team, how does he accomplish this and balance this with wider operational and strategic goals of box?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What's the most common question Jon hears from CSM leaders?
  2. What's one innovative idea Jon has tested that might be shared with the audience, vis-a-vis Customer Success?
  3. What do you know now that you wish you had know when you started?
  4. The biggest mistake current saas companies are enacting with their CS process?

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

Jon Herstein

Aug 26, 2016

Kristen Koh Goldstein is the Co-Founder @ HireAthena, the on demand workforce specialising in accounting, HR and payroll. Prior to Hire Athena, Kristen was the Co-Founder @ Scalus, where she raised millions of dollars in venture capital from top VCs including Google Ventures and Sherpa Capital. Before that Kristen was the Co-Founder @ BackOps, the world’s fastest growing back office solution. If you enjoy the show with Kristen today and would like to join Jason and I @ SaaStr Annual 2017 next year, then all you have to do is checkout SaaStr and buy your tickets for SaaStr Annual 2017.

In Today’s Episode Kristin Discusses:

  • Why it is that the faster you hire, the longer it takes to build your business? How to make the transition from a family to a village with your team?
  • Why it is imperative to hire slowly and fire fast? How to communicate new hires to the existing team to ease onboarding friction?
  • Why hiring outside of your circle is full of risks? What you can do to mitigate those risks?
  • What happens when you wake up one day and realise you are the problem in your own business?
  • What really is scaling with regards to the product? How important is product consistency in the scaling process?

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

Aug 22, 2016

Matthew Bellows is the Founder @ Yesware and a specialist in helping sales people close more deals faster. Yesware serves more than 750,000 salespeople at companies like IBM, Groupon, Salesforce, Twilio, Yelp, VMWare, and Zendesk. Prior to Yesware, Matthew was the VP of Sales at Vivox. Before that, he was GM at Floodgate (acquired by Zynga) and Founder/CEO of WGR Media (acquired by CNET Networks).

In Today’s Episode with Matthew We Discuss:

  • How Matthew came to be Founder and CEO @ Yesware? What was the a-ha moment for him?
  • Whether sales is an art or a science and what makes Matthew feel this way?
  • Why all founders should do sales until $1m ARR? What were Matt’s personal learnings from scaling the sales team with Yesware?
  • Why a CEO cannot also be a VP of Sales? When is the right time to hire an exec to run the sales team and begin sales specialisation?
  • How Matthew approaches the hiring process? What is the best way to receive high quality candidates? What does his interview process look like?
  • With the array of data on sales activity how can managers balance management with micro-management? What are the inherent problems?

60 Second SaaStr:

  1. If Matthew could do the process again, what would he redo?
  2. How does Matthew deal with rejection in business and sales?
  3. Strategies to optimise email open rates?

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

Aug 19, 2016

Ryan Fyfe is the Founder & CEO @ Humanity, the employee scheduling software that allows you to value your employees. Ryan has built Humanity to serve more than half a million users across 87 countries, with a team exceeding 100 people and continually growing across 3 continents. They have raised funding from our friends at Point Nine and a huge thank you to Christoph @ Point Nine for making the introduction today.

In Today’s Episode with Ryan We Discuss:

 

  • How did Ryan come to be founder and CEO at Humainty?
  • How does Ryan and Humanity use data to affect the marketing decisions they make with regards to customer acquisition?
  • How does Ryan look to integrate customer success into the pre-purchase period to facilitate adoption?
  • How does Ryan view free trials with Humanity? How do they A/B test free trials to optimise for conversion?
  • How can startups ensure efficient time to value in a trial period and what is the role of customer success in this?

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

Aug 15, 2016

Michael Litt is the Founder & CEO @ Vidyard the video intelligence platform that allows you to create, measure and strengthen engagement of your video content. Vidyard are based in Canada and have raised over $60m in VC funding from the likes of Battery Ventures, Bessemer, SoftTech, Salesforce Ventures, some incredible names there and the list goes on but I would like to say a  huge thanks to Matt Garrett @ Salesforce Ventures for making the intro.

In Today's Show with Michael We Discuss

 

  • How did Michael come to found Vidyard, as Paul Graham described, ‘The Google For Business’?
  • How does Michael assess value based pricing and how has his views transition with the growth of Vidyard?
  • What does Vidyard’s internal sales organisation look like? How does Michael look to optimise this structure?
  • How does Michael view the utility of the freemium model? What are the inherent advantages and disadvantages that need to be considered?

In a round we call the 60 Second Saastr, we also hear:

  1. Productivity tips and tricks?
  2. Cool hobbies, what are they?
  3. Fave SaaS material?

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

Aug 12, 2016

Today’s episode is taken from SaaStr Annual 2016, featuring Meagen Eisenberg, CMO at MongoDB and former VP Demand Gen at DocuSign, sharing her playbook for optimizing the funnel at every stage and converting leads into real, paying customers. If you want to join me and Jason @ SaaStr 2017 then head to saastr.com where you can buy tickets.

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

 

  • Why you need to think about more than just pipeline? What are the other elements of the funnel you should focus on?
  • How to optimise your forms for data capture to allow your sales team to follow up successfully?
  • How marketing can provide support to sales to attract new customers?
  • How does nurturing align the buyer with your sales team?
  • How do you accurately measure success within email marketing?
  • How can startups on a tight budget maximise exposure through content and social media?

 

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

Aug 8, 2016

Aaron Ross is the author of the best selling book, Predictable Revenue, providing the framework for the outbound process & sales team Aaron created for Salesforce.com. During his time at Salesforce as Director of Corporate Development and Acquisitions, he added an extra $100 million in revenue in just a few years. In today’s show we discuss his and Jason Lemkin’s fantastic new book, From Impossible To Inevitable, which outlines how hyper growth companies create predictable revenue? If you are a founder asking why aren’t we growing faster, how do we go into hyper-growth mode and then how do you sustain growth then this book really is for you.

In Today’s Episode with Aaron You Will Learn:

  1. How did Aaron enter the world of SaaS and come to be a Senior Director @ Salesforce? What were his biggest takeaways from seeing Salesforce scale into hypergrowth mode?
  2. WHat does Aaron mean by saying ‘nail a niche’? Does this mean go small? How much of a role does iteration play in this process?
  3. How does Aaron assess product market fit? How do you really know when you have that focus? Are there any clear signs that suggest you have achieved product market fit?
  4. Aaron has said before “people at the company will always be busy. they just might not be busy on the right things”? How important is sales specialisation? At what point does the original generalist sales team fragment into specialised elements?
  5. What are Aaron’s thoughts on ownership and how you ensure that a sense of ownership is instilled upon the team to enhance productivity? I have never heard a Founder on the show before saying ‘my team is just achieving too much!’.

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

Aug 5, 2016

As VP of Sales and Marketing at Atlassian for three years before becoming President, Jay Simons has a broad perspective on what it takes to build a successful company. Sometimes, ignoring conventional wisdom is what will differentiate you from the competition. Bootstrapping from day one, launching and supporting multiple products, and doing it all without traditional Sales team - Atlassian's approach (and wild success) has always been a curious anomaly in SaaS. After 13 years of being an exception to every rule, Atlassian went public in late 2015 with a total market capitalization of $4.37B at the time of the IPO.

In this session, Jay answers our burning questions: 

1.) Why does Jay believe in most cases the best run companies are public companies? What does being public bring to the organizational structure of a firm?

2.) How important is it for early stage startups to have board members and outside perspectives? How should they select those inputs?

3.) How important a role does customer support and success play in the conversion of customers from trial to paid versions?

 4.) How does Jay focus on 4 products with such a differentiated suite of products? Does this not contradict the often cited fundamental, focus.

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

Aug 1, 2016

Andy Sparks is the Co-Founder and Head of Sales @ Mattermark. He was previously the Technology Editor at Referly before the company pivoted to become Mattermark. Andy joined the Referly team via an acqui-hire of his company, LaunchGram, by Referly in February of 2013. Now I am going to leave the bio there as Andy does a much better job of it in the show than I do!

In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

  • How Andy came to be a 1st time Head of Sales with Mattermark?
  • What are the requirements for stretch VPs to be successful?
  • How can Head of Sales clearly and efficiently communicate with their reps? What are the 3 things all sales reps have to be trained on?
  • What are the must haves when looking at sales reps? Are there different types of reps for different stages in the business?
  • How to effectively establish a compensation structure for your sales team that is incentivising to them and to the company?

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

 

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