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SaaS Growth Stacking - with Dan Martell

How do you end up in rehab for 11 months, discover computer programming, then build 5 tech startups, selling 3 and raising money for the last 2 in 15 years? Tune in each week and Dan Martell will teach you: How he got invited to spend a week with Richard Branson. How he ended up raising money from Mark Cuban. How to hack your productivity. How to focus your marketing efforts. How to get your big dreams funded. How to build, scale and sell your technology company without giving away the control to investors and financial stakeholders. The 3 disempowering “pick me, pick me” mentality that plagues startup founders.. and what you can do to avoid it and fund your startup. Tune in each week and get Dan’s deep-in-the-trenches experience as a father, serial entrepreneur, and investor. Do you want to fund, start, scale and sell your business? That’s the only question that matters here. If the answer is “yes”, then hit the SUBSCRIBE button and let’s make it happen.
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Now displaying: October, 2017
Oct 30, 2017

What if you could get on a stage in front of an audience filled with your perfect customers and tell them about your software?

That’s what webinars are like.

In 2010 my buddy Lewis Howes stopped by our office in San Francisco preaching them as a sales tool, and that’s when I first got introduced to the power of leverage.

You get the opportunity to attract, teach and present an offer for your solution that will solve their problem…

And if you do it right, you can get them to pre-pay for years up-front in advance to help you fund future marketing initiatives to scale your startup.

That’s the promise I’m making in this week’s video.

Now, before you think I’m over hyping it… just think about it.

Have you heard of Salesforce.com? Hubspot.com? Kissmetrics.com?

All have used webinars in a HUGE way to grow sales…

… and now it’s your turn.

Now, when I ran my first webinar it tanked.

Bombed bad.

I taught some stuff, made an offer, then thanked everyone for showing up and that was that.

Zero sales.

Honestly, it turned me off of webinars for a bit.

Until I made a decision to learn from the best.

It wasn’t till a few years later that I gave it another shot, but this time I had done my homework.

I invested in the top programs to learn the format and structure and then I tweaked things to apply it to selling software.

And that’s when I came up with my Winning Webinars™ framework that’s helped hundreds of software entrepreneurs sell 10’s of millions of dollars in product.

So be sure to watch my video to learn the 5 steps + the structure of a great offer so that you can add value to your community and get a bunch of new customers!

Leave a comment with any questions about your specific situation and how I might be able to help you brainstorm your webinar idea.

Keep up the hustle!

--

Dan Martell has advised more startups than his hometown has people and teaches startup founders like you how to scale. (Get the free 3 videos to grow your business here.) He previously created, raised venture funding for and successfully exited two tech startups: Flowtown and Clarity.fm. You should follow him on twitter@danmartell for tweets that are actually awesome.

Are you an entrepreneur? Get free weekly video training here:
http://www.danmartell.com/newsletter

+ Instagram (behind the scenes): http://instagram.com/danmartell
+ Facebook (live trainings + Q&A): http://FB.com/DanMartell
+ Twitter (what I'm reading): http://twitter.com/danmartell

Oct 23, 2017

Have you ever cold emailed the CEO of a public company?

When I was 18 I sent out 20.

I knew I needed advice to build my company, and figured they might have the answer…

… so I found the list of top tech CEO’s at the time, and sent them an email with a simple question:

Everyone argues that it’s who you know (network), what you know (education) and perseverance (not giving up) that are required to be successful.

If you had to pick just one of these three, which would it be?

That was it, very little context, super specific with an ask…

My favourite response was from Mark Cuban (this was 15 years before he ever invested in my company, and to this day I don’t think I’ve told him this :).

Choosing all 3 when everyone else is picking 1.

Pure Cuban.

Sending outbound emails to potential customers that could be facing challenges you can help them with is a POWERFUL strategy.

IF you do it right.

Most mess this up because they don’t personalize it, they send out thousands of broad and non-targeted messages and they don’t come from a place of service.

Now when I was 18, I didn’t know the 4 pieces of a great outbound email, but in this week’s video I’ll share with you how to craft your message that gets a positive response every time.

To generate customers, high responding cold emails need to have these 4 parts to work properly.

If you forget one, they’ll fall flat…

  1. Research: Open with a personalized sentence. Show you’ve done your research.
  2. Reference: To similar customer, situation or experience you have.
  3. Reward: You have to give, to get. Provide value.
  4. Request: Have an ask. Quick call. Meeting in town. Reply with answer.

Also, it’s important to write it like you would to a friend.

Short, simple and not needy.

One of the biggest reasons cold emails don’t perform is because they look like a sales email within the first 2 seconds.

The easiest way to fix this is to reframe things in your mind as “I want to serve this person, but first I need to know if we’re a fit, so it’s not about selling, but instead digging deeper to assess if we’re a fit or not.”

Don’t sell. Serve.

If you reframe all your cold outbound emails using this approach it will come off as natural, helpful and super generous.

Now, before you hit send, check your local email laws as every country has their own restrictions.

But don’t let that stop you.

Anyone can email another person asking to be of service…. The key is to nail the email structure to get a response.

Hope this serves.

--

Dan Martell has advised more startups than his hometown has people and teaches startup founders like you how to scale. (Get the free 3 videos to grow your business here.) He previously created, raised venture funding for and successfully exited two tech startups: Flowtown and Clarity.fm. You should follow him on twitter@danmartell for tweets that are actually awesome.

Are you an entrepreneur? Get free weekly video training here:
http://www.danmartell.com/newsletter

+ Join me on FB: http://FB.com/DanMartell
+ Connect w/ me live: http://periscope.tv/danmartell
+ Tweet me: http://twitter.com/danmartell
+ Instagram awesomeness: http://instagram.com/danmartell

Oct 16, 2017

Can you build a thriving software business without writing code?

Can you generate real revenues without having anything built?

The answer is yes, and I personally believe that it’s the only way to do it.

A couple weeks ago I was in San Francisco hosting my Sales Pipeline Intensive event for my SaaS Academy clients, and one of the speakers John (founder of five9.com, $1.2B saas company) echoed a similar sentiment…

It was funny because we hadn’t connected prior to his talk.

So I did some research on his latest company JetBridge.com, and it mentioned all the different areas they were innovating sales using AI/Machine Learning, and when he comes up, he just smiled and said “oh, all that’s bullshit” ????

It was all made up. :)

Well, in his defense, at this point they did have a product in the outbound calling space that did have revenues and customers, but the rest was just positioning…

.. to allow them to get customers and learn fast.

And that’s what I want to teach you today as you continue on your journey building a software company (or any business for that matter).

You don’t need to have it built before you sell it.

And even better, if you don’t, I’ll show you a way you can get your future customers to finance its development…

Watch this week’s video to learn the exact same structure that one of my coaching clients Ryan used to generate $200K for his first prototype that he pre-sold.

When you build innovation there’s a few things you need to understand… one of the first is you can’t sell it to big, old, slow moving companies.

You need to find innovative and early adopting companies…

… so I share a framework to make this easy called the Technology Adoption Curve.

Also, once you have the idea, most founders will build it first then show it to customers.

But what I recommend instead is to build a Clickable Prototype, design a Customer Advisory Board and then co-create it with them.

Finally, if you want to ensure you get real commitment from your customers, then you’ll need to get them to throw down with some money.

True “Customer Validation” doesn’t occur until there’s some kind of financial commitment made…

… without it, it’s just a bunch of nice people grin f@ck*ng you.

It’s the kiss of death for a startup founder.

Have you ever tested an idea for your startup?

What creative ways – like my buddy John – did you use to test your idea? 

Leave a comment below and let me know.

I share a few others in my video from my previous startups Flowtown & Clarity as well.

Can’t wait to read yours.

Till next week.

--

Dan Martell has advised more startups than his hometown has people and teaches startup founders like you how to scale. (Get the free 3 videos to grow your business here.) He previously created, raised venture funding for and successfully exited two tech startups: Flowtown and Clarity.fm. You should follow him on twitter@danmartell for tweets that are actually awesome.

Are you an entrepreneur? Get free weekly video training here:
http://www.danmartell.com/newsletter

+ Join me on FB: http://FB.com/DanMartell
+ Connect w/ me live: http://periscope.tv/danmartell
+ Tweet me: http://twitter.com/danmartell
+ Instagram awesomeness: http://instagram.com/danmartell

Oct 9, 2017

One of my favourite stories of a bootstrapped founder is Clay Collins.

He’s the creator of LeadPages.net, and when I first met him he was doing $100K+ a month in recurring revenue.

As someone who came from the online education space, he knew his customers intimately and was an incredible marketer.

I still remember our first conversation and the questions I was asking.

I couldn’t believe the level of growth he achieved in only a few short months.

What I learned that day was the foundation for what I now call the Scaling Credo.

It’s a simple list of 5 things, that if you agree to, can dramatically impact your business.

They are counterintuitive, that’s why I wanted to cover them in this week’s video.

Now, this approach is particularly valuable for bootstrapping founders without outside investment.

Your resources are limited (time, team, capital), so you need to do less and focus on the right things.

The benefit of this credo is that it keeps you hyper focused on the critical elements of your business model.

Instead of trying to boil the ocean, it creates a focus filter for being hyper targeted in your efforts.

Here’s the list that I go over in detail in my video.

  1. ONE Target Market
  2. ONE Product
  3. ONE Conversion Tool
  4. ONE Channel
  5. ONE Year

Be sure to watch the video for the specific options you have for each item.

Understanding these steps, the power of focus, and putting ALL your resources into one decision will dramatically increase both your probability and speed of scale.

Like all good things in life, they require commitment.

Watch the video then leave a comment with which one resonated most with you.

Which are you committed to?

Can’t wait to read your answers.

--

Dan Martell has advised more startups than his hometown has people and teaches startup founders like you how to scale. (Get the free 3 videos to grow your business here.) He previously created, raised venture funding for and successfully exited two tech startups: Flowtown and Clarity.fm. You should follow him on twitter@danmartell for tweets that are actually awesome.

Are you an entrepreneur? Get free weekly video training here:
http://www.danmartell.com/newsletter

+ Join me on FB: http://FB.com/DanMartell
+ Connect w/ me live: http://periscope.tv/danmartell
+ Tweet me: http://twitter.com/danmartell
+ Instagram awesomeness: http://instagram.com/danmartell

Oct 2, 2017

It’s 2011 and I’m pacing back and forth in a parking lot in LA.

I’m about to go on This Week in Startups to talk about Flowtown which had just been acquired, but I’m stressing out…

I’m on the phone with Sean Ellis – the creator of the Customer Development survey – walking through the customer feedback I’m getting for a new product I’m starting to work on called Clarity.

I’m having a hard time figuring out my next steps.

People are signing up, but many aren’t making calls or coming back…

… so I’ve sent out a survey to ask them specific questions so I can better understand their needs and expectations.

That’s when Sean shares with me the Rosetta Stone of understanding my customer’s suggestions.

He says “Oh, just lock down all answers for the “How can we improve our product to better meet your needs?” question, with everyone who answered “Somewhat disappointed: to the; How would you feel if you could no longer use our product? question.

He then quickly explains that if I focus on the one or two features that those specific users are suggesting, then I can move them from somewhat disappointed, to VERY disappointed – and that’s how I’ll build a winning product!

Need to read that a second time?

It’s cool.

My head almost exploded too.

Of course this is how you do it, but for the past 3-4 years I had been using this survey and I guess I really didn’t understand how to use it.

That’s what I want to share with you in this week’s video.

The absolute POWER of using the right question, at the right time, and the equivalent Rosetta Stone translator, that will help you NAIL your core problem, marketing positioning & product roadmap to build something extremely valuable.

Over the years I’ve come to realize that questions hold incredible power.

For example, if you’re stuck wondering how to expand your product or services, just ask your customers this question…

“What do you do 3 minutes before, or 3 minutes after you use our product?”

Their answer will give you insights into how you can fully serve their needs around your core solution – and generate more revenue doing so.

It’s magical really.

That’s why I’ve spent a good part of my life studying the best question frameworks that you can use to overcome the biggest obstacles in your business.

I break em’ down into these 3 pain points and frameworks:

  • Pain -> Ask Method
  • Positioning -> Jobs To Be Done
  • Product -> Customer Development

If you learn how to ask the right question, to the right person, it’ll transform your business.

It even works on your own mindset but I’ll save that discussion for another day.

Till then, I would love to hear your experience talking with customers…

… what questions do you ask of them?

Leave your answers below in the comments and I’ll collect the best ones and add them to my Top Customer Questions by Learning Category tip sheet (link in the description under the video).

Can’t wait to read your stories.

--

Dan Martell has advised more startups than his hometown has people and teaches startup founders like you how to scale. (Get the free 3 videos to grow your business here.) He previously created, raised venture funding for and successfully exited two tech startups: Flowtown and Clarity.fm. You should follow him on twitter@danmartell for tweets that are actually awesome.

Are you an entrepreneur? Get free weekly video training here:
http://www.danmartell.com/newsletter

+ Join me on FB: http://FB.com/DanMartell
+ Connect w/ me live: http://periscope.tv/danmartell
+ Tweet me: http://twitter.com/danmartell
+ Instagram awesomeness: http://instagram.com/danmartell

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