How do you best calculate a price for a new product?

Comps. Comparable Products. You really do need to start here. And then — Anchor High, Same, or Low. Most software costs essentially nothing to “ship the bits”. And customers don’t really care how hard it is to build. Google search is hard to build. And it is free. And yes, you can “value price”. But even value has to have context. If I pay $100k for an S-Class Mercedes … then it turns out, $100k for a Tesla Model S seems fair. ONCE Tesla decided to turn the Model S into a Mercedes S-Class competitor. It didn’t start there. But that ended up being its comp. So first, pick a fair comparable. It doesn’t have to be a competitor. Just a product that provides similar value to a roughly similar type of buyer. Then decide in your gut if your product is more valuable than the comp. If so, Anchor
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Join Sequoia, Salesforce, Medallia, Algolia and More at the SaaStr Summer Social!

We’re getting ready for the 2017 SaaStr Summer Social on June 28! We’ve done them in Shanghai, London, New York and L.A. … this one is going to be in San Francisco. Will do 3+ SaaStr-style informal sessions, ending with a great session with Aaref Hilaly of Sequoia, Amy Pressman of unicorn Medallia, and Andy Byrne of Clari.  We’ll have The Boba Guys boba tea and great break-outs and snacks all day, and then around 6pm, open it up to a Big Party across the street at the amazing and super cool CCA Wattis Institute, where our signature craft dry ice cocktails and tapas will be served. Save the afternoon of June 28 and get your 50% off ticket here ASAP — we only have room for about 300-325 during the day, and maybe 500 for the after-party at 6pm. We’ll do the sessions during the day at the
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What Makes a Great Board Meeting? 6 Steps for Success

In countless boardrooms, it’s a scene that’s far too common. Every quarter, a hastily assembled set of constantly changing metrics are delivered in thick stacks while board members exchange occasionally confused looks and ask basic questions about data and operations. Mired in details, they never get to the real value – business strategy. At many fast-running Series A and Series B companies, where staffing is lean, growth is the imperative, and agility is paramount, the quarterly board meeting can be a source of frustration for operating teams and investors alike. Too often, these meetings are characterized by a loosely organized data-dump, without the essential narrative and context. Without clear process ownership, accurate data, or consistently structured presentations, board members are unable to understand what’s going on at the company and unclear how they can contribute expertise and perspective to help the company grow. So what makes for a great board
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What are top five things to remember when starting a company?

My top 5:
  1. Fixing the Founding Team is Very, Very Painful. Take the time to get it right. I was unstoppable when I had aligned, great co-founders. I also almost died when I had great — but dis-aligned — co-founders. A great story of how Algolia worked hard here: How Algolia built a Culture-First Company around Ownership
  2. Your market research is probably wrong, or at least off. Do more of it. If you don’t have true, deep domain expertise in your space — you are probably dealing with surface and superficial insights. If you want to understand if your initial market really needs your product, don’t shoot from the hip. Take the extra meeting. Do the extra mock-up and get feedback. If time and money don’t matter, sure, just push a product out to market. But if they do matter. Double-down on your market understanding, research, and customer interviews. More
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The Unbundling of Excel

In January 2010, Andrew Parker wrote a post called the Spawn of Craigslist. Andrew identified companies that had built businesses by unbundling Craigslist. The vacation rentals link gave rise to AirBnB and HomeAway. Etsy dominated the arts and crafts for sale. This same unbundling is occurring to Excel. Microsoft Office has more than 1 billion users globally. Assuming a 33% penetration of Excel, that’s a user population 300M users. Like Craigslist in the consumer world, Excel became the tool for nearly everyone to get stuff done at work. Need to calculate? Excel. How about a task list? Excel. How about a lightweight CRM to manage customers? Financial model? Waterfall chart for project management? Simple dashboarding/charting tool? Data exchange format between a supplier and a buyer? Light ETL tool for moving data around an organization. The list goes on and on. For millions of people, Excel is the first exposure to Continue reading "The Unbundling of Excel"

SaaStr Podcast #123: Top 10 VP of Sales Lessons In Scaling To $100m in ARR with DFJ, TalkDesk and Predictable Revenue’s, Aaron Ross

Welcome to Episode 123! Today’s show is centred around The Top 10 VP of Sales Lessons Learned In Scaling To $100M ARR. Leading this conversation is Aaron Ross, author of 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, Aaron added an extra $100 million in revenue in just a few years. Joining Aaron from the sales perspective we have Andrew Bothwell, VP of Sales @ TalkDesk and Aaron Schilke, VP Enterprise Sales @ Talkdesk, one of the fastest growing SaaS startups today. Providing insight from the other side of the table we have Josh Stein, Partner @ DFJ where his current board responsibilities include Box (NYSE: BOX), Chartbeat, LaunchDarkly, LendKey, SugarCRM, and previous guest with me on SaaStr in Talkdesk. In today’s episode you Continue reading "SaaStr Podcast #123: Top 10 VP of Sales Lessons In Scaling To $100m in ARR with DFJ, TalkDesk and Predictable Revenue’s, Aaron Ross"

Debunking the Argument that there aren’t Enough Women

The argument, “we just can’t find ‘qualified women’ to serve on our board,”, is nothing new, but honestly I am surprised how much I continue to hear it. It is trite, so last century and, most importantly, not true. What is the definition of “qualified”? Must the pool be composed of current public company CEOs? If that’s the case, you’ll likely find significantly fewer men as well, as there is a shrinking pool of publicly traded male CEOs who can or want to serve on boards. In addition, research busts the myth that sitting CEOs are the best directors. Despite the fact that sitting CEOs are highly sought-after for board seats, 79% of directors in a Stanford study said that, “in practice, active CEOs are no better than non-CEO board members.” So empirically, that non-CEO executive woman you know is just as qualified to serve as a board director
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