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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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Sep 10, 2018

Michael Katz is the Founder & CEO @ mParticle, the customer data platform that integrates all of your data and orchestrates it across channels, partners and systems. To date, Michael has raised over $75m in funding with mParticle from the likes of Social Capital, Greylock Partner, GV, Battery Ventures and more great names. Prior to founding mParticle, Mike was the Founder & CEO @ Interclick, where he organically grew revenue to over $140m in 5 years. The company went public in 2009 and was acquired by Yahoo in 2012 for $270m, a 50% premium on existing share price. If that was not enough, Michael is also a board member at Adaptly and Brightline.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How did Michael make his way into the world of SaaS with the founding of Interclick? How did that translate to his founding and running of mParticle today?
  • How does Michael think about building a company and a category at the same time? In terms of resource allocation, if one is required to invest heavily into brand, how can this be done with a seed round? What were the most challenging elements of category creation for Michael with mParticle?
  • When it comes to selling to enterprise, how can startups look to meet and stand out in the sea of startups to the enterprise buyers of today? How can they look to build trust with those buyers? How much of a role do VCs provide in terms of providing legitimacy and validation to a startup?
  • Before Michael has said ‘multi-year deals are not good’, why does he hold this belief contra to most in the ecosystem? In which cases do they work well and is there nuance? How does Michael think about the element of deferred revenue and it’s subsequent effect on potential acquirers?
  • How does Michael think about pilot programs? If mainly selling to one market segment, should pilots within other segments be accepted? What conditions on signing must be set to ensure success on completion of pilot? How should pilot programs change and evolve over time with the company?

Michael’s 60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Michael know now that he wishes he had known at the beginning?
  2. Who is crushing it in SaaS right now? Why?
  3. Pros and Cons of building SaaS startup in NYC?
  4. Motto or quote that Michael most frequently reverts to?

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

Michael Katz

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