A few weeks back, I sat down with Jonathan Corrie, cofounder and CEO of Precursive — a Salesforce-native professional services (PS) delivery cloud that provides PS automation, task, and resource management — to discuss one of my favorite topics, the role of professional services in today’s SaaS businesses.
Jonathan released the 48-minute podcast today, available on both Apple and Spotify.
Topics we discussed included:
The Hippocratic oath and executive compensation plans (do no harm).
How to frame the sales / services working relationship (i.e., no chucking deals over the fence).
Why to put an andon cord in place to stop zero-odds-of-success deals early in the sales process.
How to package services, including the risks of tshirt-sized QuickStart packages.
How to market methodology instead of packages to convince customers of what matters: success.
A few days ago, Steve Pockross released a new episode of his Yes, And Marketing podcast on which he interviews a series of “eclectic and enlivening” marketers where “your weird shower thoughts and disparate liberal arts references take a road trip.” I was last week’s featured guest, and I don’t think the episode fails to deliver on its rather unusual promise.
The importance of rigorous definitions in messaging, and how you can use them to turn gray messages into black-and-white messages.
Walking the benefits stack by repeatedly asking “so what?” and not being afraid to do so.
Never forgetting the kiss, i.e., the ultimate benefit from the point of view of the customer, in your marketing.
Thanks to Steve for having me, to Crispin Read for referring me (his episode is well worth a listen), and to all of you who find the time to listen. While I’ve been doing a lot of podcast interviews of late, like the Grateful Dead, I promise that each show is different. And this one’s a barn burner.
The one most important SaaS metric. (Hint: LTV/CAC.)
The most misunderstood SaaS metric. (I can’t remember what I said, but I should have said CAC Payback Period.)
A prediction about a workplace activity that is outrageous today but could be commonplace in the future. (I said salary transparency after struggling a bit. I suppose face masks and elbow bumps would have been an easier answer.)
Thoughts on the best software cultures. (Keyword: winning.)
My advice to my younger self. (“Put your hands in the air and step away from the keyboard,” in reference to the various troubles I’ve caused myself over email when I should have either said nothing or called.)
The link to the podcast episode is here. I hope you get a chance to listen to it and enjoy it if you do. Thanks for having me Dan.
Harry’s interview was broad-ranging, covering a number of topics including:
Financing lessons I’ve learned during prior bubble periods and, perhaps more importantly, bubble bursts.
The three basic types of exits available today: strategic acquirer, old-school private equity (PE) squeeze play, and new-school PE growth and/or platform play.
A process view of exiting a company via a PE-led sales process, including discussion of the confidential information memorandum (CIM), indications of interest (IOIs), management meetings, overlaying strategic acquirers into the process, and the somewhat non-obvious final selection criteria.
The Soundcloud version, available via any browser is here. The iTunes version is here. Regardless of whether you are interested in the topics featured in this episode, I highly recommend Harry’s podcast and listen to it myself during my walking and/or driving time.
I’m Dave Kellogg, advisor, director, consultant, angel investor, and blogger focused on enterprise software startups. I am an executive-in-residence (EIR) at Balderton Capital and principal of my own eponymous consulting business.
I bring an uncommon perspective to startup challenges having 10 years’ experience at each of the CEO, CMO, and independent director levels across 10+ companies ranging in size from zero to over $1B in revenues.
From 2012 to 2018, I was CEO of cloud EPM vendor Host Analytics, where we quintupled ARR while halving customer acquisition costs in a competitive market, ultimately selling the company in a private equity transaction.
Previously, I was SVP/GM of the $500M Service Cloud business at Salesforce; CEO of NoSQL database provider MarkLogic, which we grew from zero to $80M over 6 years; and CMO at Business Objects for nearly a decade as we grew from $30M to over $1B in revenues. I started my career in technical and product marketing positions at Ingres and Versant.
I love disruption, startups, and Silicon Valley and have had the pleasure of working in varied capacities with companies including Bluecore, FloQast, GainSight, Hex, MongoDB, Pigment, Recorded Future, and Tableau.
I currently serve on the boards of Cyber Guru (cybersecurity training), Jiminny (conversation intelligence), and Scoro (work management).
I previously served on the boards of Alation (data intelligence), Aster Data (big data), Granular (agtech), Nuxeo (content services), Profisee (MDM), and SMA Technologies (workload automation).
I periodically speak to strategy and entrepreneurship classes at the Haas School of Business (UC Berkeley) and Hautes Études Commerciales de Paris (HEC).