Just a quick post to highlight a video / podcast episode I recently recorded with Cillian Hilliard, fellow board member at work management leader Scoro, and investor at Kennett Partners. Cillian runs a great blog (complete with detailed financial models) at The Novice Investor.
(Understanding SaaS Marketing as an Investor – Dave Kellogg from Cillian Hilliard on Vimeo.)
In the episode we discuss:
- Pipeline, which is used by investors to evaluate trajectory, and how to evaluate a pipeline and tell if it’s real, which ultimately comes down to what I call pipeline discipline.
- Common problems in the pipeline including air, rolling hairballs, sudden changes / gaming, squatting, tantalizing pipeline, and excess coverage.
- Detecting repeatability in the sales model and the validity of “just add water” kind of claims. How to detect gaming.
- The floating bar problem. The thinner the pipeline, the lower sellers sets the bar on acceptance and conversely. The chick/egg problem with pipeline that results.
- The risks of math and MBA types becoming over-reliant on numbers / models, and how to manage them. Remember the George Box quote: “all models are wrong, some are useful,” which I discussed in my SaaStr 2021 presentation.
- Mitigating this problem by “just talking” and doing periodic win-touch analysis to keep you connected to reality.
- The attribution problem and my new favorite mug. How to present attribution data to avoid problems and over-reactions (hint: put disclaimers up front).
Thanks Cillian for having me on the show.