Let me start with a caveat first: this post is not about SEO or another upcoming digital marketing trend.
This post is about my learnings from recently concluded event named SaaSBoomi, often touted as the “Home to Asia’s SaaS Community”.
I attended this event for the first time this year.
I am already so impressed that I couldn’t help myself but write this detailed review on our official company blog.
What is SaaSBomi all about?
SaaSBoomi is a 2-day event that happens in Chennai, India during the month of January every year.
(Thankfully, Chennai experiences a hot weather at this time of the year. The other 2 weather conditions are hotter and hottest).
SaaSBoomi is a “by founders, for founders” event where some of the most successful entreprenuers from the Indian SaaS ecosystem come together to share their learnings, failures, mistakes, and playbooks; with an ultimate intention to ‘Pay it Forward’.
Now this vision of ‘Pay It Forward’ is what makes SaaSBoomi quite special and unique.
With no commercial intent behind the event, the entire purpose of SaaSBoomi is to help upcoming SaaS founders learn from those who have “been there, done that” and have tasted success as part of their SaaS journey. These include founders from companies like ChargeBee, KissFlow, FreshWorks, Cloud Cherry and so on.
Quoting Krish Subramaniam’s (founder ChargeBee), SaaSBoomi is an effort to nurture the SaaS industry in the country which has the potential to transform India from a Service Nation to a Product Nation.
My top 17 learnings from SaaSBoomi
Let me admit, it was extremely tough to filter out the top learnings from SaaSBoomi, especially when everything that I learned looks so critical to me.
Still, I have made an honest attempt to pen down a couple of lessons that came hard hitting as part of the 36-hour journey at SaaS Boomi 2020.
(Just FYI, I attended the sessions meant for startups with ARR< $100k. That’s why you will notice most of these learnings are centered around growth and marketing).
#1. B2B SaaS is more of a marketing ploy and less of sales. Focus your energy where it matters.
#2. Inbound marketing & SEO is what helps B2B SaaS businesses grow and scale (and that helped me market OnPage Champ at the conference with so much ease 🙂 )
#3. During your starting years, it’s better to have a global marketing strategy than a geography-specific strategy.
#4. If you are not in the mind ladder of your customer, either displace a competitor or build a new ladder.
#5. When it comes to B2B SaaS, you are running 2 products: one is the core product and the other is your website.
#6. In SaaS, the first 15 minutes of user experience is critical. And that experience starts with your website, not with your product.
#7. At the start, do more and more of less and less. Be selective in your channel strategy, but once selected, commit to the channels completely. It’s all about doing a few things really well.
#8. Your content distribution strategy is equally important (if not more) than the content creation strategy.
#9. Understand the difference between content marketing and marketing content. Give importance to both.
#10. Data is the new oil. And that includes your own data as well. SaaS can’t run without a CRM.
#11. Consultative selling is important, but so is the closure. Offering consultation without a push for closure is charity.
#12. Follow your leads religiously. Make multiple attempts to connect before you accept the “No”.
#13. Things will go wrong every day. Don’t burn out of anxiety.
#14. The first million dollars of revenue has to be via founder-led sales. There’s no other easy way.
#15. Take sales performance seriously. And that starts with the founder.
#16. Always have a customer objection handbook. Know the reasons why your prospects/customers are rejecting you.
#17. Revenue churns before a customer churns. Track the churn in that order.
SaaSBoomi was a great event to attend, both for formal as well as informal learning.
With more than 500 founders attending the event, it was a platform to make some great friends and learn from their experiences as well.
Quoting from HackerNews below. This is what the essence of SaaSBoomi is.