1. SaaS METRIC OF THE WEEK: Net Dollar Retention is an essential metric in the new world of Product Led Growth. It's used to help answer the following: Does my Startup need to increase customer acquisition/marketing spend? Crunchbase has already done the work to calculate what good NDR benchmarks should look like, but this month, Tomasz Tunguz looks at what it takes to achieve 200% NDR!
2. POC: I switched to proof of concept (POC) based paid trials as part of our enterprise sales process last year, and I like it! It's working well as part of our customer journey and is the fastest time-to-value metric we can deliver for various enterprise stakeholders. Want to get your POC up and running fast? The team at Work-Bench has a step-by-step framework AND a template of a POC Agreement for you here.
3. CAP TABLE: How do you best manage dilution from a cap table perspective? Here is what is considered "Normal," and read this article from Heavybit that discusses Cap Table management in relation to growth and how to manage that Option Pool.
4. INCENTIVES: Need to move beyond Founder-led sales in your Startup? Close.com has a rundown of five different kinds of Sales Incentive programs, one of which I'm sure would be fit for purpose for you (along with incentives to keep a sales team motivated. This post from Jason Lemkin also outlines how to construct a framework for your first SaaS sales compensation plans.
5. PROFESSIONAL SERVICES: It's a weird open secret that many B2B SaaS businesses generate significant Revenue from implementation and deployment projects, often captured as Revenue from Professional Services. This week Dave Kellogg has a post - called the Professional Services Paradox, where there are times when only a Startup can deliver the services needed to execute a transformation strategy. BTW - on average, Service Revenue as a percentage of Total Revenue caps out at 11% with Enterprise focused businesses. However, even at the lower end of town, it's still 5% of revenues with SMB-focused companies. Fun fact: more professional services, less churn.
6. SALES: ZoomInfo has unleashed an excellent playbook for all your business development teams, which I've already shared with my team. The PDF contains 16 of the best go-to-market plays from B2B sales and marketing pros across different sales funnel stages.
7. DESIGN: One of my many startup hats forces me to spend more time in Canva than I should (even though I'm pretty much canceling my Adobe Subscription as Canva can manage about 95% of my needs) - so this article a) Is visually lovely to look at and b) is in my Bookmarks of guides to reference: Visual design rules you can safely follow every time.
8. GENERATIVE AI: I bet most of you are already dabblers or active users (<cough> ChatGPT <cough>, so this should already be in your tech dictionaries, and by all accounts, Generative AI will be the next Consumer Platform. The use cases are everywhere - at least for me - and in particular, my new evolving relationship with Search and Google, a targeted integration into the business (KB articles and User Manuals), and my proximity to code.
9. CAPITAL: The article above on Generative AI then leads into more essential questions as this is a new functional application layer, so where will the value come from?
10. CASE STUDY: Founder-led sales is a well-documented part of the startup journey, often with inexperienced or more technical founders. Here is a list of 10 Founder-Led Sales lessons learned from a recent Race Capital roundtable.
POD OF THE WEEK: SaaStr is now running workshops every Wednesday - a great concept that hopefully lasts. Jessica Bartos of Salesforce Ventures was on the last one and noted that only 150 private SaaS companies have hit $100m+ ARR.
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