The Startup Playbook: The Product is Just Part of What You’re Selling

Editor’s Note: The following is an excerpt from The Startup Playbook: Founder-to-Founder Advice From Two Startup Veterans available on Amazon here. startup playbookIn the first part of our book, The Startup Playbook: Founder-to-Founder Advice from Two Startup Veterans, we broke down what it takes to be a founder so that you can do a gut check on whether it’s the right path for you. In the second part, we showed you how to develop a concept for a product and how to lay the right foundation to build a successful, fundable company. In the third section, we outlined how to get funding for your new company. Here, in the fourth and final section, we’ll discuss how you bring your concept to life and get your product into the hands of the people who want it the most. If you’ve gotten this far, you’re likely looking past your first round of
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5 Simple Pricing Hacks to Jumpstart Your Startup’s Growth

Pricing can be scary. Even slight changes can result in upset customers, bad PR, and, worse still, lost deals. Unfortunately, taking a scientific approach to optimizing your pricing can be complicated and time consuming. Getting pricing right involves hard work like quantifying your buyer personas, gathering data on price sensitivity and willingness to pay, and carefully designing A/B tests. Let’s face it, if you’re running an early stage startup, you don’t have the time or resources for all that complicated analysis, research, and testing. The consequence? Pricing doesn’t get touched at many startups. In fact, Price Intelligently found that an average company has only spent 8 hours on pricing. That’s not 8 hours in a year, that’s 8 hours over the company’s entire history! We understand you’re likely strapped for time and resources. You’re probably looking for a simple answer. So what can you do to move pricing in
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SaaStr Annual 2018: Mastering SaaS Pricing

Editor’s Note: OpenView’s Blake Bartlett and Kyle Poyar literally wrote the book on SaaS pricing. Now they’re bringing ever more pricing insights to you. Check out a copy of their presentation deck from SaaStr Annual 2018 on to learn how to master your own pricing.
The post SaaStr Annual 2018: Mastering SaaS Pricing appeared first on OpenView Labs.

SaaStr Podcast #159: Fred Shilmover, Founder & CEO @ InsightSquared Discusses Why CAC/LTV Is Not The Guiding Metric In SaaS

Welcome to Episode 159! Fred Shilmover is the CEO and co-founder of InsightSquared, one of Boston’s premiere tech startups paving the way in the sales intelligence space. Throughout the InsightSquared journey, Fred has raised over $25m in VC funding from the likes of DFJ, Bessemer, Salesforce, and Atlas Venture. Prior to founding InsightSquared, Fred was a corporate development associate with Salesforce Ventures, and before that he held several key roles at Bessemer Venture Partners, including associate and Director of IT. He is also a board member of TUGG, an organization that brings together tech entrepreneurs with social enterprises that support at-risk youth.   In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

5 Pillars to Successful Product Release Adoption

Pat yourself on the back, you’ve done it! You’re about to launch a new product capability that you’re sure your customers are going to love. You’ve done all the hard work to validate the product idea, gathered feedback from your target customers, built a compelling business case, set measurable goals and advocated cross-functionally throughout the organization to get approvals to start development. You wrote up the spec and worked with your development team to overcome hurdles and made trade-off decisions you couldn’t have imagined. You’ve accepted the final sprint deliverables and your new product capability has been in the hands of a few trusted beta customers. You’re ready to move to general availability and claim success in creating the hottest thing since sliced bread. All you need to do is draft up your release notes and email them out to all your customers and you’re done. Right??? Wrong! All the
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Netflix Quietly Perfected Their Pricing. Here’s What You Can Learn.

You know the story. Back in 2011, Netflix restructured their pricing in a big way. . They unbundled streaming plans from the traditional DVD-by-mail business, increasing the price of the combined offering from $10 a month to $16 a month. And they rebranded their DVD-by-mail business to Qwikster. The public reaction was staggeringly negative. Netflix lost a whopping 800,000 subscribers in Q3 2011. Their stock price plummeted immediately following their Q3 2011 earnings release. Over the course of four months, Netflix’s stock price dropped by almost 80% compared to July 2011. In the chart below, you can see the painful progression (courtesy of Yahoo! Finance). NFLX_YahooFinanceChart When asked about the 2011 price change, Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings said he wasn’t sure if the company had run customer focus groups before announcing the new plans. And, if they had run focus groups, he wasn’t sure what those focus groups had said. All of
Netflix pricing
NFLX_YahooFinanceChart (2)
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7 Reasons Why Companies Fail with Freemium (And How to Actually Succeed)

Editor’s Note: The full version of this article – Freemium vs Free Trial vs Hybrid Customer Acquisition Model in SaaS – appears on Medium here. What is the most effective process for acquiring customers? This is one of the most important decisions that companies have to make in the early stages. Customer acquisition strategy often covers the media channels and tools used to attract new customers. However, SaaS companies not only have to get prospects to their website but they must also design the initial interaction between prospect and product – how prospects will engage with your product for the first time. Freemium and free trial customer acquisition models are the most popular in SaaS industry. So what’s the difference? Freemium provides access to part of a software product to prospects free of charge, without a time limit. Free trial on the other hand provides partial or complete product access to
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SaaStr Podcast #158: Mike McDerment, Co-Founder & CEO @ Freshbooks Shares the 3 Core Skills of The Best Performing SaaS CEOs

Welcome to Episode 158! Mike McDerment is co-founder and CEO of FreshBooks, the #1 cloud-based accounting software designed exclusively for service-based small business owners. Starting from his parent’s basement, Mike has grown Freshbooks to more than 10m users worldwide and raising over $75m in VC funding from the likes of Accomplice and Georgian Partners. Mike is also the co-author of Breaking the Time Barrier, downloaded more than 250,000 downloads since its release. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

SaaStr Podcast #158: Mike McDerment, Co-Founder & CEO @ Freshbooks Shares the 3 Core Skills of The Best Performing SaaS CEOs

Welcome to Episode 158! Mike McDerment is co-founder and CEO of FreshBooks, the #1 cloud-based accounting software designed exclusively for service-based small business owners. Starting from his parent’s basement, Mike has grown Freshbooks to more than 10m users worldwide and raising over $75m in VC funding from the likes of Accomplice and Georgian Partners. Mike is also the co-author of Breaking the Time Barrier, downloaded more than 250,000 downloads since its release. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

SaaStr Podcast #158: Mike McDerment, Co-Founder & CEO @ Freshbooks Shares the 3 Core Skills of The Best Performing SaaS CEOs

Welcome to Episode 158! Mike McDerment is co-founder and CEO of FreshBooks, the #1 cloud-based accounting software designed exclusively for service-based small business owners. Starting from his parent’s basement, Mike has grown Freshbooks to more than 10m users worldwide and raising over $75m in VC funding from the likes of Accomplice and Georgian Partners. Mike is also the co-author of Breaking the Time Barrier, downloaded more than 250,000 downloads since its release. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn: