So as a founder, I was fired by 3 PR firms. In a row. Two actual PR firms, and the third, a solo shop.
I was fired for one simple reason: I demanded results.
First, I demanded we actually measure PR. That we score the PR hits each month, graded both on quality of the hit, as well as the prominence of my company in the piece.
And second, I demanded we have a goal to Do Better. To drive that score up.
The first PR firm fired me for asking for measuring results. The second PR firm fired me for asking us to drive it up (the score), as it went down. And the third fired me because they wanted credit for low-scoring PR that I got myself (not them).
Anyhow I’ve learned a lot since then. I’ve also worked closely with Ed Zitron of EZPR.com
Continue reading "A SaaS Founder’s Guide to PR"
In the quest for the perfect sales stack
, one is reminded of Icarus, who overestimated the power of his waxen wings and flew too close to the sun. During the final moments of his fatal plunge toward earth, the mind of Icarus must have swum with regrets, the chiefest among them of course being: “Why did I settle for the first wings I found? Sure, they were flashy and new and TechCrunch just wrote an article about them, but maybe I should have given this a little more thought.”
While a robust sales stack can be a powerful tool in the fight for more sales, the sales stack is not a cure all, and simply loading your shopping cart with the latest and greatest sales tools won’t get the job done. In fact, it may just weigh you down. To build the optimal sales stack for you and
Continue reading "How to Choose the Right Tools for Your Sales Stack in 8 Simple Steps"
Welcome to Episode 61! John Gleeson is VP of Customer Success at Affinio where John was employee #1. Two and a half years later, John is the VP of Customer Success following their Series A and has seen the team expand to over 40 people and have offices in New York, Toronto, Halifax, and Ireland. John has written a special blog post just for SaaStr listeners, outlining his ultimate guide to customer success reading; it is my go to guide for customer success.
In today’s episode you will learn:
How did John make his way into the world of SaaS and more specifically customer success?
John has previously described customer success as ‘The Analogue of Sales’, what does he mean by this?
How does it affect the way he views customer success?
How does John view the role of sales vs customer success in large accounts? How do they partner to Continue reading "SaaStr Podcast #061: John Gleeson, VP Customer Success @ Affinio Discusses The Optimal Relationship Between Customer Success and Sales"
Established companies have ample resources and a deep bench of existing customers from which to gather data and make informed pricing decisions. Bootstrapped startups like you don’t have the same people, knowledge, resources and customers at your disposal. It becomes far harder to set a price point, let alone to foster full confidence that you picked the right price.
Since you’re most focused on getting your product launched and out the door, determining price is urgent. In order to get to that number faster, let’s drastically simplify the pricing decision and focus on getting to a dollar amount you can confidently stick on your first proposal. This will ignore a host of complex pricing decisions – packaging
, value metrics, freemium, discounting, etc. We’ll get to those later, but for now, let’s focus on a number.
To decide on a launch price, you’ll need to quickly gather as much data
Continue reading "A Simple Framework for Pricing Your New Product. And Nailing it the First Time."
According to this Gallup Poll
, bad leadership is the number one reason why people leave their jobs. More than 7,000 adults surveyed left a job to “get away from their manager.”
In sales, turnover can be as high as 40% per year – more than double the average turnover rate
across all industries in the US – and can cost businesses more than $750,000 per year
. With figures like these it is critical for sales leaders to develop good relationships with reps to not only motivate them to hit their quotas, but to retain them for the long term.
The problem is that many executives frustrate rather than motivate their best salespeople. This not only hurts your company’s bottom line but creates apathy that destroys team morale. In fact, a meta-analysis of 225 academic studies
found that happier employees have 37% higher sales numbers. However, in companies where
Continue reading "The 3 Biggest Reasons Your Sales Team Can’t Stand You"
I’ve said this before, but perhaps, it can’t be said enough:
To get from $1m to $10m as quickly as possible: Keep doing what you are doing. Just better.
You are at $1.5m ARR now. You know how to close customers. You have a product people want to buy. You have done “the impossible”.
Mistake #1 folks make at this stage is getting distracting, often with the good intention of wanting to grow faster. They try to enter market segments in particular where they have no traction. Don’t do this until $10m ARR or so.
Instead, double down on what is working:
In general, you should be at least a little worried when a BigCo announces a competitor AND
commits to seriously resourcing it for > 3 years.
Is that the case here? I don’t know. Facebook does a lot of experiments and drops them. So do Google, Salesforce, etc. If this is core
to Facebook and Zuck, and it’s a 7–10 year commitment, then Slack should be at least a little worried. If it isn’t, they should of course follow it closely. But not worry too much, if at all.
The reason is here is how a BigCo experiment works:
- BigCo reads TechCrunch, follows trends in its space
- Tracks Top 5–10 Up-and-Comers
- Sees a few start to break out, decides it can “build that” and that it’s important to them
- Builds a clone
The thing is, the clone is often excellent, if backwards-looking. It’s designed to catch up to today,
Continue reading "Should Slack be worried about Facebook At Work?"