What are some common decisions most small SaaS companies make that hurt their ability to scale?

My list:
  • Hiring “too low” to save money. A VP at $150k, especially one that wants a $50k a month budget, can sound insanely expensive. Why not just hire a manager for $80k, who can work with whatever budget you assign? The problem here is that instead of hiring an accretive resource, you hire a cost center than can’t deliver sales/leads/upsells. That means the junior $80k resource is much more expensive than the $150k VP.
  • Not topping resources that need to be topped. Related, but different, than the prior point. That scrappy marketing manager you hired in the early days may go the distance. But if she can’t deliver as many leads at $2m in ARR as she did at $20k in MRR, if she falls behind … don’t wait. Hire someone above your team members that can’t scale as soon as they stop scaling. But not before.
  • Not dealing Continue reading "What are some common decisions most small SaaS companies make that hurt their ability to scale?"

Sales, Meet Marketing: 3 Actions to Foster Greater Alignment

At companies big and small, sales and marketing departments are continually at odds over lead quality, who gets credit for the sale, who owns the relationship – and so on. It doesn’t have to be this way and in fact it is imperative that the modern B2B organization bring sales and marketing together as a cohesive team. Hugh Macfarlane, Founder and CEO of align.me studied 1,400 professionals in 84 countries around the world and found that businesses that have the greatest degree of alignment close 38% more proposals than non aligned businesses. They also lose 36% fewer customers to competitors. These are solid companies doing all the right things within their respective organizations and they can bump their top line significantly just by getting sales and marketing to work from the same script. So what do we do? First, we have to clear the air and get on the
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After the CEO has closed 5+ deals, would the first sales reps you hire be someone with a lot of experience or a few younger candidates?

Answer: the first 2 sales reps have to be folks you would buy from. Later, this does not and should not be true. You will need all sorts of reps as you scale from 5 reps to 500 reps. And as you building better training systems and better processes, and as you have sales engineers and customer success managers and sales ops managers to help … you can even hire reps that really don’t understand the nuances of your product. And folks you personally wouldn’t buy from. But in the beginning, leads are so precious, and there are no processes and managers. There’s only one type of rep you can give up your precious leads and opportunities to: one you’d buy from. So experience is OK, lack of experience may be OK too. But when she talks to you and pitches you … don’t get suckered in by the resume, Continue reading "After the CEO has closed 5+ deals, would the first sales reps you hire be someone with a lot of experience or a few younger candidates?"

Gratitude

A friend died this week. It’s the first time I’ve lost a friend of a similar age. I don’t often see the fragility of life first hand, but this is one of those moments. I’ve felt many different emotions after I received the news: despair, grief, fear. The one I’m currently experiencing, though, is gratitude. And I hope that’s the feeling that persists. You will be missed, my friend.

How to find out what “success” means to your customers

Every Friday, we’re answering your questions about business, startups, customer success and more. Happy Friday! This week’s question is: Churn is a tough beast to battle, and it’s something that every business struggles with. The most powerful thing you can do to reduce churn—if you haven’t done it yet—is going to sound simple and obvious, but so few actually take the time to do it: build a real relationship with your customers. Find out who they are, what they want, what they don’t want, and how you can make them happier than they could ever be with your competitors. Every customer that signs up for Groove gets an email from me with a personal welcome and a simple question: why did you sign up for Groove? I read every response, and we get huge insights from this about each customer and what success actually means to them, which helps us Continue reading "How to find out what “success” means to your customers"

Focus on the pain: How GuideSpark’s Jon Parisi helps new SDRs convey real value and avoid “happy ears”

In the world of sales development, there is little, if anything, that excites an SDR more than finally booking a demo with a top-tier company after endless reach-outs.
Email after email, call after call, ignored. And then, success! The prospect wants to learn more. The post Focus on the pain: How GuideSpark’s Jon Parisi helps new SDRs convey real value and avoid “happy ears” appeared first on Predictable Revenue.

How to hire more women in tech sales

Throughout my career, I’ve observed that the highest performing teams have a common denominator: diversity. And, gender diversity is an undeniable variable in successful teams. At Workable, we take this to heart, especially as we build our sales team. I’m proud to say these teams are equal parts male and female (and shall continue to be so). This is no easy feat, particularly, in tech sales, notorious for its lack of women. And it didn’t happen by accident. We committed to hiring more women in tech sales, because we wanted our workforce to be gender diverse. To us, hiring women was a deliberate goal, not just a “nice to have.”

Why it’s important to hire more women in tech

It’s kind of simple: you’ll build a better product. I don’t think it’s ever helpful to your culture, or to your output, to have a homogeneous workforce –
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