What is a good demo conversion rate for SaaS startup?

This is a trick question. As are most funnel questions. The more folks you attract into your funnel, the lower your conversion rate. The fewer, but more highly qualified folks you attract, the higher the conversion rate. This is why SaaS start-ups often are so proud of their “amazing” conversion rates before they hire a real VP of Demand Gen. I’m not so proud. It’s because your top-of-funnel is unimpressive. So avoid obsessing too much about absolute metrics inside your funnel, especially the metrics between lead and close. Instead, measure them, and usually, drive them up. But sometimes, as your brand grows and you get better at marketing, you’ll attract more general passers by. And thus a lot of your conversion metrics will actually fall as you scale. View original question on quora

How to Take Your Content From Good to Great

Use these tips to make any post more interesting, useful and unique. There’s an insane amount of content published on the web, on just about any topic that you can think of. You’ll never see most of it, because most of it is horrible. And horrible content doesn’t get shared. Some of it is pretty good. Pretty good content can help you bubble up in search rankings over the long haul, and might help you appeal to a decent pool of readers who probably won’t love your content, but they’ll read it. And a very small portion of that content is extraordinary. It’s interest, useful and unique, and it’s probably most of what you actually see, because it’s the content that gets loved, interacted with and shared by thousands of passionate readers. You can write “pretty good” content just by putting in some effort to solve your audience’s challenges. If
Continue reading "How to Take Your Content From Good to Great"

Deliver Value with No Strings Attached

“Create value for the customer and a lot of other things will take care of themselves,” says Nick Francis, co-founder and CEO of Help Scout. The company’s aim is to make every customer support interaction more human and helpful. It’s not just what their product does, it’s how they operate as a business. It’s refreshing because it’s authentic and true. We all want to be true. And truth is all about consistency. You can’t claim a standard and then behave in a way that is inconsistent with that standard. That is false. No one wants to be false. This applies to everything, including building a software company. Inconsistency breeds doubt about your claims and turns users away. What if HubSpot was terrible at marketing? Would you buy their marketing software? What if New Relic’s product had lots of latency and performance issues? What if Salesforce couldn’t sell? What if
Continue reading "Deliver Value with No Strings Attached"

SaaStr Podcast #059: Michael Cardamone, Managing Director @ Acceleprise On How to Measure Sales Team Success & Test New Pricing

podcast-featured-59-cardamone2x

Welcome to Episode 59! Michael Cardamone is the Managing Director of Acceleprise, a SaaS-focused accelerator based in San Francisco and backed by leading operators. He is also an advisor to and angel investor in early stage SaaS companies. Prior to Acceleprise, Michael was one of the first 30 employees at Box in a business development role and then led partnerships at an EdTech company called AcademixDirect. Thanks to Anthony Kennada for making the introduction today. michael_cardamone

In today’s episode you will learn:
How did Michael make his way into the world of SaaS and then start Acceleprise in SF?
How can founders know when is the right time to ship product? Does Michael agree with Reid Hoffman, “If you are not embarrassed by your V1, it is too late?” How should startups look to establish a pricing mechanism at such an early stage?
What are Mike’s thoughts on freemium? Mike has said founders Continue reading "SaaStr Podcast #059: Michael Cardamone, Managing Director @ Acceleprise On How to Measure Sales Team Success & Test New Pricing"

An Alternative Approach to Growth: One Part of the Funnel at a Time

Editor’s Note: This is the second part of a two-part interview featuring Dave Gerhardt. In the first installment, Gerhardt shared tactical details about the strategy he and his team used to nail their product launch on Product Hunt. Singular focus is the basic premise behind Dave Gerhardt’s unique approach to growth at Drift. Tackling the huge task of building your user base can feel like trying to launch a rocket into deep space, but when you break the process down and focus on each part of the funnel separately, it suddenly becomes a lot easier. Gerhardt spent five years in marketing roles with Constant Contact, Privy, and HubSpot, before taking on the role of Marketing Lead at Drift, a messaging app that makes it easier for businesses to talk to their website visitors and customers, which in turn helps these businesses generate more leads, learn about their customers, and deliver
Continue reading "An Alternative Approach to Growth: One Part of the Funnel at a Time"

What are things to be aware of with a co-founder who has sold a company before and has money?

At least in SaaS, it cuts two ways:
  • Second time founders are delusional about how hard it is to achieve product-market fit. It isn’t >any< easier the second time. They think it is. It isn’t, just because you’ve done it before. This is the “no fail” mentality you are touching on. It’s common. And it’s wrong.
But
  • Second-time founders scale much more rapidly once they have product-market fit. They know the VPs to hire — and they get it done. They hire them in advance, not in arrears. They know how to raise the capital. They know how to manage customers and prospects. They scale much more effectively, if not efficiently. Because they don’t waste 1–3 years hiring VPs one after another, and struggling to raise enough money. They skip past all that. They run the whole playbook, in parallel. Yes, and because of that, they sometimes run the company Continue reading "What are things to be aware of with a co-founder who has sold a company before and has money?"