So "SaaStr Inc" revenue run rate fell to $0 in March+April with Covid ... and now is at a $3.2m run-rate, with a goal of $21m in 2021.

That's a big tilt, and a lot of change

The stakes weren't that high, but it was a second life learning on "tilting"

Here's what I learned:
1. Folks process change at different rates. Co-founders can process change the fastest. Some folks though need 10x-20x longer.

You need to >explain< rapid change many, many more times than you think.
2. Some good folks just won't go on that next journey with you. Some folks just won't want to go through the "tilt" and change. They didn't sign up for the new journey.
3. Give folks more time in a tilt. Related to point #1, but in a tilt, even some of the best folks may need 100 days to not just process change, but internalize brand new ways of doing things

But once they do, amazing things can happen

So give your top performers more time
4. Don't overload your top performers. This is tempting in normal times, but even more so during change. The top engineer, the top VP, the top leaders take even more on their shoulders.

As CEO/founder, you need to make sure they don't take on so much, they break.
5. The real leaders, post-tilt, come out better than ever. Promote them. Invest in them. Rebuild around them.

And watch who pokes their head up above the clouds.

The leaders you didn't know you had.
6. Finally, broken record here -- but go talk to your customers. They didn't know what they wanted in March and April (either). But they adjusted.

Your customers can't see the future very well.

But they sure can see the present. They can show you that. If you listen.

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More from @jasonlk

3 Sep
10 of my takeaways from convo with @HenryLSchuck CEO @zoominfo this morning:

1/ Automation is great, but doesn't replace people. Best-of-breed automation PLUS best-of-breed people is magic

2/ Respect your board's feedback, but make your own decisions. "Later" is a good answer.
3/ Adding managers that know how to sell at a slightly higher ACV can be magical. They'll teach the team how to increase deal sizes.

4/ If you are efficient at sales+marketing, put incremental margin into product. That's a weapon inefficient folks don't have.
5/ Yes, you can buy a faster-growing competitor. It's at least worth thinking about. And building relationships there.

6/ As you scale, persuasion becomes more and more important. You need to invest more time explaining decisions to folks.
Read 6 tweets
13 Aug
There is no great community software

It's 2020

Go build it
1/ Since Facebook + LI own social graphs, community software has to be better than just using Groups, etc.

2/ Slack + Discord aren't really optimized for community. Can get tons of users on it but very difficult to manage a community over time.
3/ Most Community software isn't "enough better" than FB/LI/Slack/Discord to create a Third Space where folks will log in constantly

In fact, destination websites in general are in steep decline

See also, forums, blogs, etc. They are still big. But no longer destinations.
Read 4 tweets
6 Apr
.@chamath: "You need 36 months of cash. For every month it goes down, it takes 2-3 months to go back up. If it takes 9 months to sort itself out -- then it will take 27 months to get out."

stitcher.com/podcast/recode…
.@chamath: "Things change fast in moments like this. There is no hero premium. There is only schmuck insurance."
.@chamath: "I hope this is one of the great buying opportunities. But it's only the 4th week."
Read 10 tweets
30 Dec 19
2019 was a big growth in our social followers, after an almost flat 2018

Some learnings:

1. Everything plateaus. So you have to add new channels.

2. Each channel needs different content. Twitter and Quora have nothing in common, e.g.

3. Cadence matters, but varies.
4. Blogs may be dead, but blogging isn't. However, the majority of the traffic to our blog in 2019 came from social.

5. Engagement for us ranks as follows: Blog, Podcast, Twitter, LinkedIn, Quora.

Things that are immaterial for us: Facebook, Insta, and probably YouTube.
6. Recirculated content is OK, but not great. E.g., on twitter @jasonlk (new content) performs about 3x better than @saastr, even though both have similar follower count.

7. Very hard to build a list from moats (e.g., Quora, LinkedIn). But -- done right, they have big distro.
Read 5 tweets
24 Oct 19
I'm a B2B guy

But we have now sold almost $20,000,000 in tickets to SaaStr events

Here's what I've learned about B2C

All really obvious I guess:

1/ Discounts work. It doesn't even matter from what.

2/ Being too clever doesn't work. KISS. KISS.

3/ A/B tests really work
4/ Most marketers don't really want to speak from data, but want to do what they enjoy doing.

This is a disaster at scale.

5/ Price sensitivity is super confusing and really requires a data model.

6/ What worked somewhere else will work everywhere. But not as well.
7/ 80% of our ticket sales are from our newsletter list. That is our crown jewel.

8/ Retargeting really works. Social may not work for you as a direct acquisition channel. But boy it works to follow you around.
Read 6 tweets
16 Oct 19
Algolia announced it raised $110m yesterday

Here is what it looked like 5 years ago, at $12k in MRR

They had already begun to run a playbook
First, even though they were in part a self-service product, they had already begun to follow their customers and tilt a bit upmarket.

More on that here: saastr.com/why-tilting-ju…
Second, they did whatever they could to increase Lead Velocity

They got a basic outbound engine going

They showed up at events

They promoted their long tail

More here: saastr.com/why-lead-veloc…
Read 8 tweets

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