1. SaaS METRIC OF THE WEEK: The nag Metric, I'm bringing this one out of the archives, as I have been nagged a bit lately: A call to action within a site or customer journey is kinda like a parent trying to get their kid to clean up their mess. It gets a bit naggy after a while and gets mentally filtered out. This can impact your brand/NPS or irritate people into churn. The Nag Score - outlined in detail here, is an attempt to quantify this.
2. 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). Tability has a (complete!) 2022 guide on the OKR Framework.
3. DESIGN: Bringing good design into different elements of a business is nothing new to most modern businesses. But there are specialized branches of design constantly emerging. Growth Design is one of my new favorites - merging typical HCD/Empathy Design but adding in the pragmatism of designing the jobs that need to be done by your customers.
4. COGS: Not every listing I write has to be exciting. Important is just as important. SaaS P&Ls are structured in specific ways, and defining what goes into the cost of goods sold (COGS) section is important. So take a good read of what the SaaSCFO recommends to include. An eye opener for me - where do you record your Support, Professional Services, and Customer Success expenses?
5. FUNDING: Startups go through a variety of fundraising lifecycles. This article is a guide to understanding startup funding/investing for all of you at the early stage of startup life.
6. VALUE PROPOSITION: We have all been asked endless times about our company's Value Proposition. In this article, Bart Krawczyk argues that solving a painful problem for customers is hardly enough: You also have to win the market category you play in. There are also some excellent value prop examples in this article.
7. PROBLEMS: The complimentary how-to guide for #6 above: 7 Principles For Writing Great Problem Statements.
8. CUSTOMER SUCCESS: ChurnZero has a great new report (surveying 1,037 customer success pros) - the 2022 Customer Success Leadership Study: 50% of CS teams own renewals and 41% own expansion.
9. VENTURE: Ouch: Pitchbook's 2022 Global Fund Performance Report is out, showing that the IRR (internal rate of return) for venture capital funds fell to -2.3% in Q2 2022. This is the first time since 2016 that the returns have dipped below zero. This a signal that the era of venture capital outperforming other private market asset classes is likely coming to an end. (Excel version of Data here).
10. CASE STUDY: Figma famously wandered around in the wilderness in the early days until they found Product Market Fit. First Round Capital has broken Figmas' growth down (from stealth to enterprise) into 5 phases. This article dives deeper into Figma's Early Days and how patience & discipline fostered a killer product and PLG motion.
POD OF THE WEEK: From Stage2 Capital: How and when to layer Sales into PLG with Tony Granados (DataDog and Airtable).