1. SaaS METRIC OF THE WEEK: T3D3: No, this is not a reference to a Star Wars Droid; it's an update to a much loved "T2D3" metric that Neeraj Agarwal of Battery Ventures referenced back in 2015. The original is an acronym for "triple, triple, double, double, double" and refers not to the secret burger menu at In-N-Outs, but to a company's annualized revenue growth path towards becoming a unicorn. T3D3 is the updated version of that acronym which is, you guessed it, "triple, triple, triple, double, double, double." This update was due to the explosion of valuations and market caps, so let's see if 2022 reverts back to the original T2D3.
2. VENTURE: July Funding numbers are out and don't look stellar. According to this article from Crunchbase, venture funding declined globally to 28 billion (a 34% MoM drop), down from $63 billion last year.
3. OKRs: Pioneered by Google a couple of decades back, OKRs have emerged as a part of the suite of modern product and company best practices (that include Lean, Agile, and Jobs-To-Be-Done frameworks). Heavybit has a great article on steps to get started for the first time within your organization.
4. CHANNEL SALES: As I'm learning, figuring out channels (new, emerging, adjacent, uncertain, etc.) requires experimental rigor and good process. Reforge.com are never lacking for detail when it comes to addressing topics like this so take a deep read of their article here complete with a framework, case studies, and a Worksheet (Google Sheets style!).
5. PLANNING #1: Mike Tyson put it well, "Everyone has a plan 'till they get punched in the mouth", and Covid, combined with the economic downturn of 2022, has been a real metaphorical one-two face punch. So take a read here from an article last month by Lucas F. Costa on why long-term plans don't work (and how to fix them).
6. PLANNING #2: But the ying to the yang above, if you need to be better at planning, is this is an excellent (pre-one-two Face punch above) article on planning from First Round Capital. It includes lessons from some of the best planners (along with their processes) at Airbnb and Eventbrite. It's an intense read and has some really great templates (including the "W Framework" for you to put to work.
7. PLANNING #3: This year has sped by for me, and for many of you with calendar EOY/Financial EOY, the year-end will be here before you know it. So here is a question: How Dynamic Is Your Revenue Plan this year? Who knows what new mouth-punch event could happen next year that could stall or even reverse your growth aspirations (hello, recession/inflation!). So it's time to pull operational techniques from other departments (such as your Dev squad's Agile ways) to create a more dynamic revenue plan. Take a good read of this article from SBI for hot tips on avoiding poor Sales-based strategic planning. It even comes with an (OK-ish) downloadable planning tool (which I took the liberty to snag and sacrifice my email address for you), and First Round Capital feels the same way - Annual Planning is Killing Your Growth - but takes a different tack - building a three-year plan!
8. PLG: Product-led growth is ever evolving and maturing, and Openview just launched a new view on the 11 Principles/Trends for PLG based on their insights and lessons learned over the past 8 years since the phrase was coined. Infographic of all 11 here.
9. EMAIL (deep dive): On the non-PLG end - Cold email outreach is a go-to modern-day sales tool, but this method historically had a meager response rate (1% for cold emails). 1. Jason Bay has spot-on methods to optimize response rates, 2. Predictable Revenue has this PowerPoint deck on the four pillars they think constitutes a quality sales-based email campaign. 3. This is a quality case study for anyone with email marketing as part of their businesses - a deep dive into a single cold email and why the author actually opened it (TL;DR - yes, it's all about everything in the design of the email, but its more about how targeted the message is). 4. So here (from LeadIQ) is their 3-step guide to getting noticed by email. And finally, with a VERY focused mission on getting to Demo - a guide to booking 70+ demos/month/rep using cold email.
10. CASE STUDY: Pitch Decks - from CB Insights is a collection of the early pitch decks of 29 startups before they became billion-dollar companies, including Airbnb, Brex, Canva, Facebook, and Dropbox.
POD OF THE WEEK: This week, it's a video. Product Lead Growth is now very much a thing since the OG's of the term, Openview, coined it back in 2016. This is the TL;DR from #8 above - 11 Tips for Startups using Product-Led Growth.