The SaaS Podcast on ConversionAid - SaaS Startups, Growth Hacking & Entrepreneurship

James Gill is the co-founder and CEO of GoSquared, an all-in-one platform for SaaS businesses. GoSquared combines analytics, CRM, live chat, and marketing automation in one seamless platform.

The three co-founders started the company when they were 14 years old. They set to build an online advertising business inspired by watching the TV show 'Mad Men'. But nothing worked. As James told me, they couldn't even pay for lunch; and that was school lunch!

However, as part of their advertising business, they also built a tool with a beautiful design which gave people insights about their web traffic. And people seemed more interested in this tool, than in their advertising business.

So they turned the tool into a product and started selling that. And over time, they added live chat and CRM capabilities. Now, 10 years later, they've built a business with over 1000 paying customers and 10 employees.

This isn't a story about rapid growth and raising millions of dollars. But it is a great story about persisting through failures, following your passions, listening to your customers and solving problems you discover along the way and most importantly building a great product.


Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.

Direct download: 144-James-Gill-GoSquared.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:15pm PST

Natalie Nagele guest is the co-founder and CEO of Wildbit, a bootstrapped software company that builds web apps to help software developers collaborate better.

The company was founded in 1999 as a web development consultancy and it launched its first web app in 2005. Since then the company has launched and grown a number of products such as Beanstalk, Deploybot and Postmark which are used by over 100,000 companies.

Half of the Wildbit team works out Philadelphia, with the rest spread out around the world. And the company's culture, communication and process are specifically tailored around a remote team.

This week's interview is a story about a bootstrapped software company that generates multi-million dollars in revenue, is profitable and most of the time, its employees work no more than 40 hours a week.

The company was founded by a husband and wife team, who started out with a consulting business and eventually turned it into a product business that now has 3 successful software products and a team of 26 people across the world.

The founders do a lot of things that go against the conventional wisdom that we so often hear these days. From private offices for every employee, to a standard 40 hour work week, they've shown that you can build a profitable and successful business.

A big part of their company culture was inspired by 37Signals (the makers of Basecamp) and the book Getting Real.

My guest is a wonderful woman, who has an inspiring story to share and I love how both she and her husband, have built a people first' company culture. It's easy to talk about something like that, it's much harder to actually do it.

I'm sure you'll walk away with at least one great idea from this interview and maybe you'll be inspired to a think a little differently about your business.

Direct download: 143-Natalie-Nagele-Wildbit.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:58pm PST

Laura Roeder is the founder of Meet Edgar, a social media scheduling & automation SaaS product. She started her entrepreneurial journey at the age of 22 by launching a web design business and then a social media consulting and training business. And in 2014, she decided to launch Meet Edgar, her first SaaS business. Today, the company generates over $4 million in annual recurring revenue (ARR) and has been self-funded from day one.

This week's interview is a story about a first time SaaS entrepreneur. She didn't have any experience with software and didn't the first thing about coding.

But she was already building a following in the social media space and realized that the way that most people handle social media isn't sustainable for small businesses. She thought there was a better solution and decided to build a software product.

And she's done a lot of things that many startup founders would consider counter intuitive. For example, her product's homepage is optimized for email list building and not getting people to immediately sign up for a trial.

And her approach to Facebook advertising was deceptively simple. And it went against the advice that most Facebook experts would give you. But it worked.

And she's kept her company laser focused on small businesses. She could have easily started adding more features and higher level plans for teams and agencies. But she has been very deliberate about not doing that.

In fact, her product doesn't even offer multiple plans. There's one plan, one price if you pay monthly and one price if you have annually. That's it.

And that approach has paid of her. The business is now doing over $4 million in annual recurring revenue and is continue to grow quickly.

There are some great lessons here and I hope you enjoy the interview.

Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 142-Laura-Roeder-Edgar.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST

Grant Miller is the co-founder of Replicated, a service that solves the problem for companies who want to install and deploy a SaaS application behind their own firewall in a corporate data center or private cloud.

Previously, he was the co-founder of Look IO, a mobile live-chat problem that was acquired by LivePerson just 9 months after launch for several million dollars.

He and his co-founder, Marc Campbell, have already raised $6.5 million dollars for Replicated. And they're been making solid progress in growing this new business.

In this episode, we talk about what Grant has been up to since I last interviewed him a couple of years ago. We discuss lessons he's learned from this first startup and what he's doing differently this time.

And we talk about a new project that he's been working on called EnterpriseReady.io which has become a great resource for any SaaS business that wants to sell their product to enterprise customers.

When you deal with enterprise and corporate customers, you have a bunch of technical challenges to deal with. And your product needs to have enterprise grade features such Single Sign On (SSO), Role Based Access Control, Product Security and more.

So we talk about how EnterpriseReady.io (a free resource) has been developed to make it easier for any SaaS business to create an enterprise-ready product. And we look at some case studies on how some more established SaaS businesses have designed and built these features into their products.

And even if you have no intention to sell to enterprise customers, you will learn a lot in this episode about how to build a better and more robust SaaS product.


Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 141-Grant_Miller-Replicated.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST

Bruno Didier is the founder and CEO of Y-Combinator startup Trackin.

The company provides a software solution to help restaurants get better control of their deliveries by connecting managers, drivers and customers. Trackin offers an online ordering system for customers, a dashboard for managers, an app for drivers and a real-time tracking solution for deliveries.

The company was founded in 2014, has raised $400K to date and is based in San Francisco.

This is a story about a guy who ordered dinner from a restaurant for himself and a few friends through an online delivery service. After waiting for hours and not getting his food, he went and bought a pizza from a local grocery store. He decided that he was never going to order a delivery from a restaurant again.

He kept thinking that there had to be a better delivery solution for restaurants that tracked deliveries and helped customers know exactly where their order was and when they were going to get the delivery. He wished that someone would come up with a solution for this.

Eventually, he realized that he was the guy who had to solve this problem. He's a solo founder who decided to move away from San Francisco to start his business. In 4 years he's gone from zero to over $2 million in annual recurring revenue (ARR).

He also got accepted in Y-Combinator, which helped him to think bigger and grow his business faster. And if it wasn't for a dinner he had with a stranger in France, he would never have even considered applying to YC because it seemed to big of a goal.

Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 140-Bruno-Didier-Trackin.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST

Russ Perry is the founder of Design Pickle, a productized service that offers unlimited graphic design support for your day-to-day business needs for a flat monthly fee.

Design Pickle launched in January 2015. And in just two years its grown it into a business with 45 full-time staff and $160K on monthly recurring revenue (MRR).

Russ was running a creative agency but wasn't entirely happy with what he was doing. He thought that the agency business model was dysfunctional and he wanted to run a more predictable business. But he didn't have a clue what that business was going to be.

He made a list of what he wanted in his life, both personally and professionally. And he also started to get clear about what type of business he didn't want to build. And then he sat back and waited for inspiration, while he did consulting on the side to help pay the bills.

And a few weeks later, he had his 'aha' moment. And it was a very simple idea. He decided to launch a design agency and used a 'productized consulting' model -- very similar to how pricing for a SaaS product works.

In 2 years, he's gone from zero to $160,000 in monthly recurring revenue (MRR). That's almost $2M annual run rate (ARR). And he now has a team of 45 full-time employees.

It's an inspiring story, and he's an energetic and entertaining guy. I hope you enjoy this interview.

Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 139-Russ-Perry-DesignPickle.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST

Matt Ekstrom is the co-founder of Prospectify, a B2B prospecting platform that helps you to automate your lead generation process. Prospectify uses data search, data enrichment, and verification systems to help you build highly targeted prospect lists.

The company was founded in January 2016 and was self-funded for the first year, and then raised $1 million in funding.

Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 138-Matt-Ekstrom-Prospectify.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST

Claudiu Murariu is the founder and CEO of InnerTrends, a growth analytics platform for SaaS and web products. InnerTrends uses data science technologies to help you understand every aspect of your user onboarding process and convert more first-time users into customers. The company was founded in 2015 and is based in Romania.

Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 137-Claudiu-Murariu-InnerTrends.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST

Antonio Carlos Soares is the co-founder and CEO of RunRun.it, a SaaS product that helps teams to manage tasks, projects, performance and corporate communication.

The company was founded in 2012, is based in Sao Paolo, Brazil and to date has raised $4.4 million in funding. RunRun.it has more than 1000 paying customers and generates over $2 million in annual recurring revenue (ARR).

Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 136-Antonio-Carlos-Soares-RunRunIt.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST

Stuart McKeown is the co-founder of Gleam, a growth platform that helps businesses to drive more engagement with customers. Gleam provides a suite of marketing apps focused on giveaways, rewards, and user feedback.

Stuart's background is in search engine marketing. He's originally from the UK and moved to Melbourne, Australia in 2005. Gleam was founded in 2013 and has over 400,000 users and 5000 customers including companies such as Hubspot and Shopify.

Do you want to learn how to build, launch and grow your SaaS product? Get Our Free Learning Guides.
Direct download: 135-Stuart-Mckeown-Gleam.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am PST