Observations about Silicon Valley Two Weeks into Quarantine


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    What’s going on in Startupland?
Venture rounds are closing. We’ve seen seeds, As, Bs, and growth rounds in the past few weeks. And round announcements continue. Valuations are coming down a bit, but they are all over the map. It’s too early to draw any conclusions about pacing, however. In fundraising conversations, founders are candid. Founders share the growth story of the business before the onset of the virus, and few of them have the visibility to project end of year performance. Some founders in market today are running dual track processes, choosing between raising capital and pushing toward profitability within a certain time frame. When asked about the decision criteria for selecting a venture partner, one founder replied with a single phrase: speed to close. Many founders are wondering about the SBA programs and are looking for clarity on the rules. There are several programs including unemployment benefits for Continue reading "Observations about Silicon Valley Two Weeks into Quarantine"

What do Google Search Query Trends Reveal about the Changes in How We Work?


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    I was reading an article in the <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/26/business/coronavirus-internet-traffic-speed.html">NY Times about how we&rsquo;re all using much more internet than we have been</a>. Consequently, YouTube is throttling video quality, and some of our services are slower than before. I&rsquo;ve also heard anecdotally that some forms of content marketing are doing well in an era when knowledge workers sit before our laptops all day.
I wondered where I could find some interesting data about these patterns. I couldn’t find real-time data about bandwidth, but Google’s Trends product does show near up to date Google queries, which is a good proxy. image First, I started with the two behemoths of working from home software: Slack and Zoom. Stewart Butterfield tweeted about the growth of active users in the last few weeks, from 10m to 12.5m. Take a look at the differences in search queries between Zoom and Slack. Zoom is basically vertical. image In talking
image
image
Continue reading "What do Google Search Query Trends Reveal about the Changes in How We Work?"

Data Lake Engines – The Essential Layer of the Next Generation Data Architecture


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    In 2015, we partnered with two young founders to build Dremio. Tomer Shiran and Jacques Nadeau had just left MapR, and they came to work from our offices in Menlo Park. We shared a vision for a new way of working with data. Today, the company is announcing a $70M Series C to help them along that journey.
More data is being stored in data lakes like Amazon S3 and Azure Data Lake Storage. At the same time, the BI landscape has blossomed. Analysts and product managers and sales operations teams deploy Tableau, Power BI, Looker, Superset, and many other tools to parse their data. There needs to be a layer between them to make all that data accessible to these users - a data lake engine. That’s Dremio. If you keep data in cloud data lake stores, and need a system to make that data accessible to analysis tools Continue reading "Data Lake Engines – The Essential Layer of the Next Generation Data Architecture"

What Will this Crisis Accelerate in Your Ecosystem?


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    I read an op-ed in Bloomberg last week written by a stock trader who was on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during the 1989 crash. His manager brought him into his office. The trader feared his manager would fire him. Instead, his manager told him that these kinds of crises accelerate change and that he should embrace them. I&rsquo;m struggling to find the link now, but if I do, I will update this blog post with it.
Since then, I’ve been asking myself, what changes will this crisis accelerate? Obviously, telecommuting/videoconferencing adoption will have accelerated. As many of us learn how to manage our days and our businesses exclusively through video, it will be more natural in the future to do so even when we can meet in person. In a related vein, my partner Alex suggested to me that telemedicine will become normalized. For those with Continue reading "What Will this Crisis Accelerate in Your Ecosystem?"

Six Startup Disciplines for Challenging Times


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    I wrote <a href="https://tomtunguz.com/estimating-impact-to-growth-coronavirus/">earlier this week</a> about estimating the impact to growth rates during this challenging time. Speaking with startups, I&rsquo;ve collected a list of disciplines that are going to become very important in the next period.
First, transparent communication. David Sacks wrote Happy Talk versus Hard Talk, which is an excellent post on how to communicate during a crisis. There is no better example than Winston Churchill. As you articulate communication plans, speak with transparency, candor, and gravity. Arne Sorenson’s corporate address to the Marriott company is a role model. Second, gauging customer health. Most SaaS companies will have existing customers. Some of these customers will be insulated from the virus. Others may benefit from it. Many of them will suffer from it. Customer success and account management teams should focus on understanding customer health. This is important to project churn rates, assess timing of software payments, and estimate Continue reading "Six Startup Disciplines for Challenging Times"

Estimating the Impact of the Coronavirus on Growth


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    As we readjust to the impacts of the coronavirus, I&rsquo;ve been asking myself: what is a basic useful model for estimating the growth impact to a software company? Of course, every business should develop a more conservative model, focused primarily on cash management to provide a longer runway. I expect the venture market to slow round counts for a quarter, but then resume. As growth rates fall, valuations should move similarly. My hunch originates from <a href="https://tomtunguz.com/analogy-coronavirus-2008-crash/">this analysis of the 2008 crisis</a>. But it&rsquo;s too early to say for sure.
Getting back to the original question, what’s a basic model to box the impact of the virus to a business? Here’s a basic model you can download and play with the inputs. You can change the bolded numbers. The idea is to create a ballpark estimate. Let’s use the example in the sheet. image This is a company at 15M in ARR. Continue reading "Estimating the Impact of the Coronavirus on Growth"

What Could the Venture Market Look Like in the Coronavirus Era


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    What could happen to the fundraising market in the coronavirus era where organizers cancel events, the financial markets suffer from a bear market, and there is a lot of uncertainty? The most recent event to use as an analogy is the 2008 financial crisis. In 2008, I had just joined the venture industry, and then Lehman fell. So this was a bit of a trip down memory lane. Let&rsquo;s look at the data.
image In 2006, VCs invested about $3.5B per quarter in seed, A, B, and C rounds. That grew to about $5B per quarter in 2007 and early 2008. Then the investing velocity fell by half to $2.9B, $2.7B, and $2.3B in the quarters following the crash. The market bounced back to similar levels once in Q2 2010, but needed eight quarters to return to its previous volumes. image Let’s break down the trends by series.
image
image
Continue reading "What Could the Venture Market Look Like in the Coronavirus Era"

Notes from Office Hours with Lisa Lawson


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    Recently, we welcomed Lisa Lawson to SaaS Office Hours to talk about building a channel go-to-market strategy for SaaS companies. Lisa built the channel at Optimizely, which accounted for a meaningful fraction of new business. I learned quite a bit from the sessions with the five companies who attended the one-on-one sessions. Here are my notes.
Where to Start The first place to start is to learn to sell your startup’s product well. To make a partnership successful, your startup will need to teach another sales team to sell your product. That means understanding your ideal customer profile, developing enablement materials to close those customers, and training new account executives to succeed in that effort consistently. Internal Clarity Different roles in a company may have different goals for channel development. The CEO may want a partnership for brand association. The sales team asks for more leads. The customer success team Continue reading "Notes from Office Hours with Lisa Lawson"

What I Expect in the Next Few Months


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    I was on a panel yesterday to speak about the impacts of the coronavirus on financial markets and startups. Later in the afternoon, I read the Sequoia black swan memo. So I figured today, I&rsquo;ll summarize my outlook on the next few months.
Startup Growth Rates
For startups, things will likely slow down. Longer sales cycles will be the leading indicator. At least, that’s my key metric for startup health over the next few months. With travel curtailed, closing new customers will require selling over the phone/video - and it’s a bit harder to build trust, particularly for big deals over the phone. Bookings will be more volatile than in the past as a result. So, more pipeline is necessary to create consistency. However, there’s a confounding factor: pipeline generation will be harder. Teams will be working from home. Consequently, we are all adapting to new working patterns. Additionally, organizers
image
Continue reading "What I Expect in the Next Few Months"

The SaaS Marketing Scorecard – How Does Your Marketing Operation Rank?


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




    <img src="https://res.cloudinary.com/dzawgnnlr/image/upload/q_auto/f_auto/w_auto/gabe_larsen_marketing_framework.png" alt="image">
The 9 Disciplines of Great SaaS Companies remains one of the most popular posts on marketing on this blog. It’s a wonderful framework by Bill Macaitis, who was the CMO at Zendesk and Slack. Gabe Larsen, the VP of Growth at Kustomer, has a marketing scorecard that goes one level deeper and breaks down some of the key elements of key marketing processes. The framework breaks down the key marketing operational roles into six buckets. Each bucket has a set of disciplines that the team scores. The value of this framework is two-fold. First, it enumerates the important priorities for a marketing team. For me, it was the first time I’d seen a taxonomy laid out plainly and simply. And second, the scorecard provides a way for a team to understand their strengths and weaknesses. You might score each on a 1 to 10 scale. Let’s walk through each Continue reading "The SaaS Marketing Scorecard – How Does Your Marketing Operation Rank?"