BUILD
Listen to Season 5

BUILD is back with a lineup of new episodes! (You can catch up on season 4 here.) This season, we’re revisiting the next go-to-market strategy for SaaS companies: Product Led Growth (PLG). PLG is a go-to-market strategy that relies on the product itself rather than sales and marketing as the primary driver of user acquisition, conversion and expansion. At its core, product led growth is really about de-laboring the distribution side of a software business to help you grow both faster and more efficiently.

You’ll hear from leaders at top PLG companies like Slack, Expensify, Calendly and more on what it takes to scale a product-led business. Enjoy! 🎧


New This Week

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Featured This Week

Hiten Shah is the mastermind behind Crazy Egg, Product Habits & FYI. He and his team pioneered heat maps and the left to right funnel, but what actually got him obsessed with product and product led growth? On this episode, Hiten dives into freemium, his love for solving problems in unique ways and why founders should get involved with sales. He also describes how to get the entire team to think about growth and the role of sales and marketing in PLG businesses. You’ll hear how he got to #1 on ProductHunt and his tips for getting there – be sure to check out his collection, ‘Free Stuff For Startups.’

Upcoming Guests
Who's on BUILD

This season features a killer lineup of leaders from top performing PLG software companies. They’ve all successfully scaled their businesses using this model. We’re excited to share with you their stories of rapid, not reckless, growth.

Episode Guide

Oji Udezue

VP, Product & Design
Calendly

Chris Savage

Co-founder & CEO
Wistia

Elena Verna

SVP, Product & Growth
Malwarebytes

Jason Mills

Director of Customers & Product
Expensify

Jonathan Kim

Founder
Appcues

Scott Williamson

VP, Product Management
SendGrid

Lisa Ashcraft

Head of Customer Success
Dropbox

Justin Gallagher

Head of Product Management
Atlassian

Kelly Watkins

VP, Global Marketing
Slack

Jeff Weiser

CMO
Shopify

Hiten Shah

Co-founder
FYI

Episode Guide
BUILD: Episode 45
BUILD: Episode 46
BUILD: Episode 47
BUILD: Episode 48
BUILD: Episode 49
BUILD: Episode 50
BUILD: Episode 51
BUILD: Episode 52
BUILD: Episode 53
BUILD: Episode 54
BUILD: Episode 55
Meet the host
Oji Udezue

How Calendly Built Virality Into Their Product to Achieve Rapid Growth

Welcome to Season 5 of the BUILD podcast! Today's episode is all about virality. In this episode, we'll hear from Oji Udezue, VP of Product & Design at Calendly. Oji previously worked at Atlassian where he was the product owner for Atlassian's communication products like HipChat. Oji discusses the story behind Calendly 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.


Justin Gallagher

Insights from Trello: How to Keep Your Product Simple While Driving Value

Justin Gallagher, Head of Product Management at Trello, is no stranger to building a simple, yet extremely valuable, product for users. On this episode of BUILD, he explains how Trello came to be, the importance of demonstrating value in your product from the very beginning to drive virality, the concepts that are most important to get right in a self-serve model and much more.


Scott Williamson

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.


Elena Verna

Malwarebytes’ Elena Verna on Growth Hacking in the PLG Era

You've seen the growing trend of Growth teams and Growth leaders, but what does that actually mean? Elena Verna, the SVP of Product & Growth at Malwarebytes and formerly the SVP of Growth at SurveyMonkey, wrote the book on growth. This episode is all about the importance of a solid analytics platform, the metrics freemium businesses should focus on, how to make your customers drive acquisition and how the Growth team fits in with the rest of the business. Learn from her biggest wins.


Chris Savage

Wistia’s CEO on the Role of Sales in a PLG Company

PLG companies don't necessarily rely on a large sales and marketing team to grow. Wistia’s Co-founder & CEO, Chris Savage, explains their decision to create a self-service funnel and when their sales team gets involved in the buying process. Chris also explains how the sales team came to be and how they adopted Wistia’s values during the customer’s buying process. Also make sure you check out their One, Ten, One Hundred video series by going to wi.st/series.


Jason Mills

The People Side of PLG with Expensify's Jason Mills

Expensify kicked off 2019 with a Super Bowl-sized bang, but it's a well-known fact that for most of their history, they haven't engaged in outbound marketing or advertising. Oh yeah, and they don't have a sales team. So what's the secret to their success? PLG. Jason Mills, the Director of Product and Customers, describes how they focus on their customers and the product to have maximum impact. He also describes how they are proactive about virality, their motivation to remove confusion from the product and how automation is augmented with a human. You'll also find out what else to expect from the Expensify team in 2019.


Lisa Ashcraft

How Dropbox Scaled with Customer Success as Their Secret Weapon

Customer success has come to mean a lot more than just churn prevention. As Head of CS at Dropbox, Lisa Ashcraft is constantly thinking about continuous improvement and what success looks 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. At the end of the day, it's all about becoming a trusted advisor to users and educating them on using the product in new ways to get the most out of it.


Jonathan Kim

Appcues' Jonathan Kim on the Art of Onboarding

This may sound strange, but more often than not, Appcues' biggest competition is actually nothing. Most companies don't have an intentional onboarding experience; users are just dropped into a dashboard full of zeros. Their Co-founder & CEO, Jonathan Kim, explains how to master the art of a meaningful onboarding experience through personalization and humanization. Listen to learn about their definition of product led growth, where they've seen sales add the most value and what he sees for the future of UX. You'll also find out how to maximize impact if you're designing onboarding for the first time.


Kelly Watkins

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. She's seen first-hand the role marketing plays in growth and knows the ins and outs of each type of marketing. In this episode, 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. You'll also find out the two things she cares about as a marketer and what's next for her career.


Jeff Weiser

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.


Hiten Shah

Building & Growing Free SaaS Products People Love with Serial Entrepreneur, Hiten Shah

Hiten Shah is the mastermind behind Crazy Egg, Product Habits & FYI. He and his team pioneered heat maps and the left to right funnel, but what actually got him obsessed with product and product led growth? On this episode, Hiten dives into freemium, his love for solving problems in unique ways and why founders should get involved with sales. He also describes how to get the entire team to think about growth and the role of sales and marketing in PLG businesses. You'll hear how he got to #1 on ProductHunt and his tips for getting there - be sure to check out his collection, 'Free Stuff For Startups.'


Blake Bartlett

Blake is a Partner at OpenView, where he focuses on application software, and has led the firm’s investments in Expensify, Pantheon and Logikcull. Prior to OpenView, he was an investor at Battery Ventures, where he helped lead investments in companies like Optimizely, Glassdoor, Sprinklr, Wayfair (NYSE:W) and Q2 Holdings (NYSE:QTWO).

Connect with Blake on LinkedIn.

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