OpenView’s Top Product Led Growth Content from 2019

The end of the year typically means content calendars are full of roundup articles and trends to look out for in the new year. We published over 250 articles in 2019 and we’re proud to partner with contributors who provide our community with key insights and takeaways in the SaaS industry.

2019 was the year of the End User and the rise of Product Led Growth. We had some of the top PLG leaders from organizations like Zapier, Dropbox, Atlassian, Expensify, Calendly, SendGrid, GitLab and more contribute to our blog and our podcast. And we can’t forget all of the content that came from OpenView individuals. This year we published a lot of exciting content that dives into this go-to-market strategy.

Go ahead, take a look at some of our favorite content and podcasts as we reflect on 2019 and look ahead to 2020.

What is Product Led Growth? How to Build A Software Company in the End User Era
What is product led growth? Blake Bartlett explains the latest to-go-market strategy, how we got here and why the end user is now the most powerful buyer.

2019 Expansion SaaS Benchmarks
Our 2019 Expansion SaaS Benchmarks Report is live! Over 500 software companies participated, from pre-revenue to $150M+ ARR publicly traded SaaS companies. See all of our insights here.

It’s a Rough Time to Be a Startup – Here’s What You Can Do About It
SaaS is now ubiquitous. Everywhere you look there are dominant SaaS companies with thriving products. That’s certainly true in developer tooling (AWS), sales and support (Salesforce), MarTech (Adobe), commerce (Square), HR tech (Workday) and even vertical markets (Veeva). This begs the question: how much room is left for emerging startups? OV’s Kyle Poyar breaks down his thoughts here.

Can’t we do better than NPS?
Investors look closely at retention rates as a signal of customer health, product stickiness, competitive differentiation and pricing power. Happy customers are the best long-term store of value at your disposal. Retention rates – particularly net dollar retention – also strongly predict a SaaS company’s growth rate. Somehow, NPS has become synonymous with retention. But is NPS really the best we can do?

The Ultimate Guide to SaaS Product Management
Our inclusive guide features the best resources available to help you execute an amazing product management strategy.

The Ultimate SaaS Funnel Guide
Funnel conversion is fundamental for SaaS growth. Your funnel is your insight into your prospect’s journey with your company. We put together a guide to provide you a one-stop resource for best practices on how to set up your funnel, methodologies to optimize it as well as the hiring fundamentals to build a team that will continue to take your funnel and your business to new heights.

Expansion Saas Benchmarks Data Explorer
Our 2019 Expansion SaaS Benchmarks Data Explorer allows you to find your exact peer benchmarks around the metrics that matter most: YoY growth, gross margin, cash burn rate, CAC payback, net dollar retention and logo retention. Check it out!

Product Led Growth Maturity Grader
Our PLG Maturity Grader is a tool that gives you a quick idea of how far along your organization is on the PLG maturity spectrum. As you answer questions, we’ll adjust your Maturity Score and give you advice on how to improve in real-time.

Product Led Growth Market Map
OpenView developed the Product Led Growth Market Map to illustrate the breadth and dynamism of this powerful growth strategy. We recently published the third iteration of our PLG Market Map that includes over 300 SaaS organizations. Are you on the map? Find out!

Product Led Growth Index
Launched in June 2018, our Product Led Growth Index exposes the financial, operating and valuation data for the public PLG companies that we track. Take a look at key valuation drivers for the PLG businesses in the public SaaS index compared with the broader set in our 5th update of the Index.

Top Product Led Growth BUILD Episodes

Our BUILD podcast had some killer guests in 2019. Take a look at some of our favorite episode below (and make sure you subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts!).

How Calendly Built Virality Into Their Product to Achieve Rapid Growth
Oji Udezue, VP of Product & Design at Calendly, discusses the story behind the company and how they built virality, network effects and viral loops into their product. He also explains how to add virality to a product that isn’t inherently viral, how to prioritize building out the core product vs. product enhancements, who should own the growth function in a product led growth business and more.

Shopify’s CMO on the Science of Data-Driven Marketing
Jeff Weiser hasn’t exactly followed a traditional path to get to CMO, but his background in strategy and analytics has made him incredibly successful. In this episode, Jeff explains his perspective on the power of analytics (while also laying out the limitations they present). Learn about the role product led growth has played in the evolution of Shopify’s target customer, advice about amplifying the power of word-of-mouth and the role of marketing in a product-led world.

Kelly Watkins on Slack & The State of Marketing in a PLG Company
Kelly Watkins has consistently been at the heart of marketing within PLG companies – first at GitHub as the Director of Product & Brand Marketing and most recently as the VP of Global Marketing at Slack. Kelly sheds light how young companies should think about product marketing and when to make their first hire, how impactful brand was for her team and the role content played in Slack’s strategy.

How SendGrid Prioritizes Core Product Improvements
Scott Williamson, VP of Product at SendGrid (recently acquired by Twilio), is no stranger to utilizing a product to drive growth. He explains the nature of product led growth at SendGrid and how it calls for ruthless prioritization in the core product and a focus around making changes that positively impact the most people. He also discusses the importance of listening to your customers, prioritization of your roadmap, launching a new product within an existing company and much more.

How Dropbox Scaled with Customer Success as Their Secret Weapon
Customer success has come to mean a lot more than just churn prevention. As former Head of CS at Dropbox, Lisa Ashcraft was constantly thinking about continuous improvement and what success looked like for her team. Learn about the importance of pattern matching to remove friction, the metric that matters most for her team and some of her proudest moments.

Interested in submitting an article for our blog? Send an email to Bayley at bayley@ov.vc.

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