The SaaStr Annual is the preeminent SaaS (Software as a Service) conference. It kicked off yesterday with long lines and rain in San Francisco. Several advisers had recommended this conference to me, so I bought my ticket months ahead of time. Here are some of my takeaways from day one of SaaStr Annual 2017.
SaaStr Annual 2017: How to Build a Sales Team 1-100
Building a Sales Team from 1-100 is Really Hard
- There are three phases of sales growth.
- Product market fit may be revisited later when targeting new markets
- Build measure learn for product market fit. Do lots of experiments quick
- Most dangerous error: CEO magic. Rules get broken. Too much bespoke features and rolling over on legal terms. Sales Team won't work w/o CEO magic. Or YC magic (lol)
- Case studies, testimonials, advocates. Needed early on.
- Lessons from Oracle: Document everything. Turn it into workflow; Training machine. Emphasis on Employee development; Emphasis on sales culture and frontline managers.
SaaStr Annual 2017: How I Built Our First Functional Customer Success Organization
Standing room only in the Tactical Room
- Three pillars of Customer Success: Professional Services, Customer Success Manager, Tech Support
- Psychology degrees preferred for CSM's
- Don't put quotas on CSM's. not in their DNA.
- Sales owns the quota. Customer success has to be a willing partner to help them get there.
- Customer Success can be looked at as a revenue driver. Growing accounts delicately. Don't lose customers' trust.
- CSM's should challenge the customer (in a diplomatic way)
- Customer Success is the intersection of revenue, marketing, product and support.
- You need someone at the table thinking about the customer all the time.
- V2MOMs got a mention (yay)
SaaStr Annual 2017: How To: NPS 75 with 40K CustomersJoshua Reeves, Co-founder and CEO of Gusto with Lexi Reese, Gusto CXO
- What is your customer experience strategy?
- Who are you willing to be bad for?
- How do you devise a customer experience framework that works for your business?
- What will you do when you screw up?
- What are your Non-Negotiables?
SaaStr Annual 2017: Making Sure Your CAC Doesn't Kill You: Driving Low Cost Customer Acquisition
The room was overflowing with people at this point
- Reduce friction when onboarding a new customer
- Fix leaky buckets fast
- Happy customers make everyone's job easier
- Aggressive outbound can burn through the market and negatively affect your brand.
- Invest more in content. Go all in. All employees post. Have a strategy around distribution.
- Start small with account based marketing. Can be done on the cheap.
- People always want to hear from the CEO.
- Be first into a new channel, CAC is always going to be low.