SaaStr Podcasts for the Week with Jennifer Tejada, Ben Chestnut, and Jason Lemkin


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Ep. 370: As organizations race to achieve relevance and a competitive edge in the digital era, automation is fueling the fight. Join PagerDuty’s CEO, Jennifer Tejada, as she discusses the need for agility and innovation and how automation is aiding adaptability and allowing enterprises to surge ahead.

  This episode is sponsored by Linode.   SaaStr’s Founder’s Favorites Series features one of SaaStr’s best of the best sessions that you might have missed. This episode is an excerpt from a session at SaaStr Summit: Enterprise. You can see the full video here, and read the podcast transcript below.  

Ep. 371: It’s no secret that businesses today are struggling with an unpredictable economy. In this session, Mailchimp Co-founder and CEO Ben Chestnut will share the story of Mailchimp’s founding amidst—and despite—the dot-com bubble burst, and how the company navigated a number of inflection points in the first 10 years of its founding.

  This episode is sponsored by Outgrow.   This episode is an excerpt from Jason and Ben’s session at SaaStr Annual @ Home. You can read the podcast transcript below.   If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here: Jason Lemkin
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Jennifer Tejada
Ben Chestnut We’ve shared the transcript of episode 370 below. You can also jump down to the transcript of episode 371. Continue reading "SaaStr Podcasts for the Week with Jennifer Tejada, Ben Chestnut, and Jason Lemkin"

The 3 Types of Day 1 Pricing: Low End of Normal. Identical. And Anchor High.


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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Q:  As an entrepreneur starting out, is it better to overprice your product or underprice it?

For most of us, as we build up our confidence, the best initial pricing strategy to start is the Low End of Normal.

Why? It creates the least friction. And you want the least friction possible in sales when you are starting out.

What is the Low End of Normal?

  • First, just look at the competition. The market leader(s) in the space, the Top 1–3 players.
  • If you don’t have direct competition, look at “comps”. Comparables. Apps that provide roughly similar value.  A bit more on that here.  There is no commodity pricing in SaaS.  But there are ranges.
  • Price at 80% of that, to start. If that looks too low, raise the price a smidge.

The Low End of Normal says the right things to start for a brand new app Continue reading "The 3 Types of Day 1 Pricing: Low End of Normal. Identical. And Anchor High."

SaaStr Podcast #358 with Tipalti Founder & CEO Chen Amit


This post is by Amelia Ibarra from SaaStr


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Ep. 358: Chen Amit is the Founder & CEO @ Tipalti, the only global payable automation platform that scales with you and now remitting $5Bn annually across 3M suppliers. To date, Chen has raised over $146M with Tipalti from the likes of Oren Zeev, Dan Rose, Mike Chalfen and then Greenspring, Truebridge and 01 Advisors to name a few. Previously, Chen was CEO of Atrica, acquired by Nokia-Siemens. He also was co-founder and CEO of Verix. At ECI Telecom, Chen founded its ADSL business unit and led it from inception to $100 million in annual sales.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:
  • How Chen made his way into the world of SaaS and came to found the leader in account payables with Tipalti.
  • Why does Chen believe so much of his success is derived from saying no to customers? How does Chen determine which customer feedback to ingest vs to reject? If rejected, how can startups do this in a polite and respectful way? How can startups give the appearance of a large company to enterprises?
  • Given the infinite supply of capital, how does Chen think about unit economics? How does Chen think the right way to calculate LTV is? Where do many go wrong? What can we learn from Amazon when it comes to LTV? How does Chen advise founders to think about annual dollar churn?
  • How does Chen think about optimizing pricing models today? How can SaaS companies have variable pricing mechanisms without disincentivizing usage? How does Chen think about aligning revenue scale to your customers? How can this be done? What are the benefits?  
If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here: Jason Lemkin
SaaStr
Harry Stebbings
Chen Amit Below, we’ve shared the transcript of Harry’s interview with Chen. Continue reading "SaaStr Podcast #358 with Tipalti Founder & CEO Chen Amit"

The 1 Simple Test to Know if You’ve Hired a Real VP of Product or Customer Success … Or Not


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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I remember the first time I had a “head of product” in SaaS.  I’d known him for many years, and knew he was great … but didn’t really know what help he could give us.  I just knew we needed help around $2m-$3m so I asked him to help.  I told him just to help us however he thought best. He went away and first did something I didn’t totally get.  The first thing he did was meet in person or on a web conference with our Top 20 customers.  I thought it was sort of training for him.  I thought I knew what they all thought (our top 20 customers) anyway.  I didn’t think this would really help us all this much.  But I was wrong. Later I realized it’s what all the great product leaders, and customer success leaders, do Continue reading "The 1 Simple Test to Know if You’ve Hired a Real VP of Product or Customer Success … Or Not"

“More Free” Seems To Be Working Well These Days


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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Q:  What is a strategy you have employed as a software company to keep sales up during COVID-19?

My favorite strategy looking across my portfolio of investments is not charging customer that right now are struggling.

We did a deep dive on how this turbocharged Gorgias’s growth here, and there are many other examples I’ve seen as well:

 

You want customers for life. If their revenue is way down now since Covid-19 hit, maybe just keep them. Even if they can’t pay as much, or even anything for a little while. You can monetize them again later, once their revenue is back up.

Mixmax as another example expanded their Free offering since Covid-19 hit … making it Free-er … and didn’t take any revenue hit:

It probably won’t even really cost you much in the short-term. And it likely will make you more in the medium and long term.

Haven’t seen Continue reading "“More Free” Seems To Be Working Well These Days"

SaaStr Podcast #349 with Craft Ventures General Partner David Sacks: “How to Turn Your SaaS Startup into an Army”


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Ep. 349: Startups can get messy. Especially in growth. David Sacks (Yammer, PayPal) shares how to navigate from 50-500 employees.

This episode is sponsored by Lightmatter.     SaaStr’s Founder’s Favorites Series features one of SaaStr’s best of the best sessions that you might have missed. This episode is an excerpt from David’s session at SaaStr Summit: The New New in Venture. You can see the full video here, and read the podcast transcript below.   If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here: Jason Lemkin
SaaStr
David Sacks The transcript for this episode is below: Continue reading "SaaStr Podcast #349 with Craft Ventures General Partner David Sacks: “How to Turn Your SaaS Startup into an Army”"

SaaStr Podcast #342 with Zapier CEO Wade Foster


This post is by Amelia Ibarra from SaaStr


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Ep. 342: On this episode of the SaaStr podcast, our CEO, Jason Lemkin, chats with Zapier CEO, Wade Foster, on Distributed Teams and Building a Cloud Product. Zapier is a global remote company that allows end-users to integrate the web applications they use. Although Zapier is based in Sunnyvale, California, it employs a workforce of 250 employees located around the United States and in 23 other countries.

This interview was recorded in February 2020.   This podcast is sponsored by Guru.   If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here: Jason Lemkin
SaaStr
Wade Foster Below, we’ve shared the transcript of Jason’s interview with Wade. Continue reading "SaaStr Podcast #342 with Zapier CEO Wade Foster"

Salesforce: Still Very Important. Just Not as Important as It Used To Be.


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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For us SaaS Old Timers, it’s still all sort of about Salesforce.  We build apps on Salesforce.  We hired folks from Salesforce.  We learned from Salesforce. We “copied” Salesforce. It remains the #1 pure SaaS company by far and is a force of nature.  A $150 billion+ mega company.  The first to $1b in ARR, the first to $10b in ARR, and likely, the first to $100b in ARR. And yet, it has become somehow less important.  Most founders I talk to today … not all, but most … really don’t care that much about Salesforce.  Even just 4-5 years ago, most still did. What happened?  It’s not that Salesforce is any less important.  It’s still the #1 way to plug into an enterprise software ecosystem.  It’s just everything else got bigger.  Let’s take a look at it this
Continue reading "Salesforce: Still Very Important. Just Not as Important as It Used To Be."

SaaStr Podcasts for the Week with Moveworks and Bessemer Venture Partners — April 10, 2020


This post is by Deborah Findling from SaaStr


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Ep. 323: Bhavin Shah is the Founder & CEO @ Moveworks, the cloud-based AI platform, purpose-built for large enterprises, that resolves employees’ IT support issues⁠—instantly and automatically. To date Bhavin has raised over $108M with Moveworks from the likes of Mamoon Hamid @ Kleiner Perkins, Arij Janmohamed @ Lightspeed, Bain Capital, Sapphire Ventures and ICONIQ. Prior to Moveworks, Bhavin was the Founder and CEO @ Refresh which was later acquired by LinkedIn and then before that founded Gazillion Entertainment, a company he scaled to over 200 employees.

Pssst 🗣 Loving our podcast content? Listen to the start of the episode for a promo code to our upcoming events! In Today’s Episode We Discuss:
  • How Bhavin made his way into the wonderful world of SaaS and came to found Moveworks.
  • What are the core challenges IT teams are facing as a result of the move to remote work? Where do many make mistakes here? What can one do from a structural perspective to set them up for success when moving to remote?
  • What does great change management look like in Bhavin’s mind today? Where do so many go wrong here? How does this change in the world of remote? Who should be involved in executing on the change management plan?
  • How does Bhavin think about the role of customer success today? Why does Bhavin believe that customer success and product should be in one org? How does Bhavin think about the interplay of marketing and customer success? Is marketing moving closer and closer to customer success with their content?  
Ep. 324: Join SaaStr CEO Jason Lemkin and Bessemer Venture Partners Partner Byron Deeter for a deep dive on what’s going on in Venture Capital and Cloud. This episode is sponsored by TaxJar.   SaaStr’s Founder’s Favorites Series features one of SaaStr’s best of the best sessions that you might have missed. This podcast is an excerpt from Jason and Byron’s webinar “Bridging the Gap: The Current State of Venture Capital and Cloud.” You can find the full webinar here.   If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here: Jason Lemkin
SaaStr
Harry Stebbings
Bhavin Shah
Byron Deeter Below, we’ve shared the transcript of Harry’s interview with Bhavin. Continue reading "SaaStr Podcasts for the Week with Moveworks and Bessemer Venture Partners — April 10, 2020"

Now Is The Time to Upgrade Your Discovery Funnel and Process


This post is by Jason Lemkin from SaaStr


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In talking to dozens of SaaS companies this week and past, it’s clear most of us are seeing a big slowdown in new deals.  Not all of us, but most of us. But one thing is still going on outside of the most impacted industries — discovery. In fact, in some cases, tech companies that are WFH have more time as customers to do discovery. I personally do.  This week, for the first time in years, I’ve tried out over a dozen vendors.  And what I’ve seen is:
  • Typos
  • Can’t handle load
  • Broken log-ins
  • SSO issues
  • Too-aggressive SDR follow-up
  • Copy that doesn’t address my use case
Here’s an app that was highly recommended this week.  I was excited.  And then after, I logged in: I can show a lot more examples. My simple idea is this:  Do a Discovery Audit Take a very fresh Continue reading "Now Is The Time to Upgrade Your Discovery Funnel and Process"