ServiceNow Closed 678 New $1m+ Deals. Just Last Quarter.


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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There are a few magical moments as you go upmarket in SaaS:
  • The first time you close a $1m TCV (total contract value) deal.  E.g., $250k a year for 4 years.
  • The first time you close a $1m ACV deal.  A $1,000,000 a year deal.
  • The first time you close a $1m ACV deal — every month.  12 a year.  This one takes a while to get to 🙂
But once you can close one $1m deal, you can close another, and eventually 10, and then, like ServiceNow, a stunning 600+ per quarter. How is this possible?  Well, if you haven’t worked in the Fortune 500 / Global 2000 before, it may seem confusing. But some rough maths:

Is Growth Bad for Startups? Feat. Think3 (Video + Transcript)


This post is by Faith Storey from SaaStr


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Alex Western, Managing Director at Think3, talks about the problem he has seen consistently across SaaS startups that have VC funding – overgrowth. Overgrowth normally happens because of misalignment in VC initiatives and founder initiatives. Because VCs want to make 15x on their investments, founders aren’t realizing that overgrowth is actually dangerous for their companies. Alex suggests different approaches on handling overgrowth and how smaller-valued exits might be the best strategy long-term for both founders and VCs. Also, if you didn’t attend SaaStr Europa, we’re doing it bigger and better in June 2019.  Grab your tickets! 🙂 Transcript Alex Western – Managing Director at Think3 I’d like to start with a story. About a year ago I met a company called PowerDrive which sells a CRM solution to the auto mechanic space. The founder Marko is actually become a friend of mine. The company was 3 million a year Continue reading "Is Growth Bad for Startups? Feat. Think3 (Video + Transcript)"

A Few Thoughts On How To Think About Dilution


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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Over the past few weeks, I was fortunate enough to catch up with several Unicorn++ founders who relatively speaking, had not raised that much vs their peers.  We talking about a lot of things from scaling, to IPOs, to the journey, and more. But one thing all 3 brought up that surprised me was Dilution.  They talked a lot about dilution.  From a longer-termer’s perspective.  This is from folks worth so much on an absolute scale it’s hard to imagine perhaps why Dilution would be top of mind.  Especially since they hadn’t relatively speaking even raised that much.  But it’s because only after 7, 10, 15, 20 years into the founder journey that you truly see how dilution plays out. I thought a lot about these discussions.  For many folks, dilution from an equity fundraise is a luxury.  The vast majority of Continue reading "A Few Thoughts On How To Think About Dilution"

Why a Great Rep Can Close 9x More Than a Poor Rep, and Even 2.5x More Than a Good Rep


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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We’ve talked a lot on SaaStr about great sales professionals, on driving up Revenue Per Lead, on not capping sales comp systems, and on why you need to manage out your worst reps (because leads are precious). What we haven’t done yet is put it all together in a simple, quantitative spreadsheet.  Let’s do that — it is eye-opening: This is what happens in the real world.  A great rep often literally closes 9x more than a poor rep.  And even 2.5x+ that of a decent, mid-pack rep.  With the exact same number — and same quality — of leads. But how?  How does this happen?  It’s several factors compounding:

Building Great SaaS Companies Everywhere with SaaStr and Point Nine Capital (Video + Transcript)


This post is by Faith Storey from SaaStr


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Jason Lemkin, Founder & CEO at SaaStr and Christoph Janz, Partner at Point Nine Capital, had an opening session at SaaStr Europe earlier this year. They talk about the state of SaaS, pros and cons of SF vs Europe and more. Also, if you didn’t attend SaaStr Europa, we’re doing it bigger and better in June 2019.  Grab your tickets! 🙂 Transcript Founder & CEO @ SaaStr| Jason Lemkin Partner @ Point Nine Capital | Christoph Janz Jason Lemkin: You know we probably met. This is so Bessemer if you haven’t seen this go to Bessemer Venture Partners Web site there’s something called the Cloud index and they look at where all the public cloud companies have gone. And I think this starts around 2013. And Cloud stocks and SaaS stocks start to do well. And then in February 2016 there is that drop. You remember that? I seemed Continue reading "Building Great SaaS Companies Everywhere with SaaStr and Point Nine Capital (Video + Transcript)"

Your Top 5% Employees … And Bottom 5%


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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In my relatively brief tenure as a VP at a Fortune 500 tech company, I struggled a bit dealing with the processes, systems and bureaucracy.   But in the time since, I’ve mellowed a bit and realized a lot of the processes actually made a lot of sense, especially when you have 15,000+ employees.  You have to have good systems and processes at scale. One that was most interesting to me, and one I recommend adopting in the New Year (or really, ideally in December of each year), is the Annual Top 5% and Bottom 5% identification. At Big Companies, it’s hard to fire anyone.  HR makes it tough.  So each year, most big companies instead go through an annual reorg of sorts.  All the VPs get together and identify the Bottom 5% of the team.  And then separately, they also meet to do equity awards Continue reading "Your Top 5% Employees … And Bottom 5%"

It’s Time To Start Getting an Uber/Lyft Rating for Sales Reps. And Paying Them Based On It.


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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This year we’ve had a string of fairly terrible experiences buying software at little ol’ SaaStr:
  • With one well-known SaaS vendor, an employee e-signed a 2-year contract without permission.  We never deployed the software, and yet the vendor threatened to sue us if we didn’t pay for Year 2.  Even though we never used the product, paid in full for Year 1, and the signor had no signatory authority.
  • Another vendor, the sales rep was so aggressive it took us 14 months to buy.  We would have bought the prior year, but the rep was so insistent on rip-off pricing we gave up.  The rep also shut off the trial repeatedly before we could even put any data in it or use it. It took intervention at the C-level to get the deal done, and it took more than a year.
  • A third vendor, the rep
    Continue reading "It’s Time To Start Getting an Uber/Lyft Rating for Sales Reps. And Paying Them Based On It."

What’s Your Loss Rate? You Really Should Know.


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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A ways back on SaaStr, we wrote a classic post, Beware of the Confidence of High Win Rates.  It’s something I see again and again, especially below $2m in ARR or so.  A start-up says they have a lot of problems, but winning deals isn’t one of them.  That they win every deal they are in.  Well, of course these early stage start-ups win all these deals.  Because they are only invited to just a very small percentage of the dances. So ultimately, it’s healthy and positive to see win rates decline after $1m-$2m.  That means your mini-brand is coming into its own, prospects are starting to hear about you, and that marketing, one way or another, is starting to work.  You are getting into more deals that you aren’t ready for.  That’s OK.  You’ll learn from the ones you lose,
Continue reading "What’s Your Loss Rate? You Really Should Know."

How to Close More Revenue Today — With The Leads You Already Have. Use The “3 L’s”.


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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If you’re past $4m-$5m or so in revenue, this post isn’t for you.  You’ll have figured this out, at least mostly.  But if you are on either side of $1m in ARR, there are 3 things you can almost always do from a pure process standpoint to squeeze materially more revenue out per lead.  Do ’em now! ? First, implement lead scoring.  But also make sure every lead is called back.  Hopefully, if you are coming up on $1m in ARR, you have some sort of lead scoring, but many of you don’t.  Most marketing automation and some CRMs have at least very rudimentary lead scoring built in these days.  Lead scoring, simply put, matches a generic lead to a set of actions (e.g., what they do on your site or app) with some data (company size, fit for your app, Continue reading "How to Close More Revenue Today — With The Leads You Already Have. Use The “3 L’s”."

Olivier Pomel, CEO of Datadog: How to Build and Sell a Product that Customers Love (Video + Transcript)


This post is by Faith Storey from SaaStr


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 Co-Founder at Plato, Jean-Baptiste Coger (JB), held a session with CEO at Datadog, Olivier Pomel, at SaaStr Europa. Pomel focuses his talk on making your SaaS startup customer-centric. He talks about how event marketing has helped him integrate his engineering and sales teams. He also talks about product managers and ways to utilize them effectively. Lastly, he provides his piece of advice to all founders that are looking to become customer-centric. What’s your take? Also, if you didn’t attend SaaStr Europa, we’re having it again in 2019. Don’t miss out on the chance to get your tickets. ? Transcript CEO @ Datadog | Olivier Pomel
Co-Founder @ Plato | Jean-Baptiste Coger JB: My name is JB, I’m one of the founders of PLATO. So I start with a simple question. How many of you guys’ product rely on the highly functioning engineering team? Yeah, everyone, right? So that’s pretty Continue reading "Olivier Pomel, CEO of Datadog: How to Build and Sell a Product that Customers Love (Video + Transcript)"