B2B Revenue Acceleration
B2B Revenue Acceleration

Episode · 10 months ago

99: A Guide to Product-led Growth w/ Jimmy Fong

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Product-Led Growth is defined as a go-to-market strategy that relies on using your product as the main vehicle to acquire, activate, and retain customers

But how to know if it’s the right strategy for your business?

In this episode, Jimmy Fong, Chief Commercial Officer at SEON, joins the show to explain how product-led growth introduces a potent dynamic to customer engagement.

We talked about ways to implement product-led growth, focusing on time-to-value, and learning from B2C marketing.

To hear this interview and many more like it, subscribe to The B2B Revenue Acceleration Podcast on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or on our website.

Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for The B2B Revenue Acceleration Podcast in your favorite podcast player.

You were listening to bb revenue acceleration, a podcast dedicated helping software executive stay on the cutting edge of sales andmarketing in their industry. Let's get into the show. Hi, welcome tobe to be a revenue acceleration. My name is alien, with you andI'm here today with Jimmy Funk, chief commercial officer at see on. Howare you doing to the Jimmy? Yeah, right, great, really good tobe on the show. Thanks for having me. That's an absolute pleasure. So today we want to speak about product led growth, which is avery interesting to pick. But before we go into the the detail and stopthe conversation, can you please tell us a little bit more about yourself,as well as the company your represents? H Yeah, sure. So youknow, real quick summary, ever since Uni I've been fortunate kind of landedin the text base. So back even the last financial crisis, is kindof went enter the ECOMMON payments world and I've been everywhere from individual contributor upto team lead, up to kind of managing enter price sales teams responsible fora region and rev and then, more laterally helping at a c Seo overat an early stage risk text start up, so kind of pre series a andresponsible for sales and marketing for us. But as we're going to today,it's a bit of a funny scenario because we like to do it verydifferently at, say, on so we are at very product led and almostempti sales, which is kind of weird right. This is different. IsGood to be difficult if you had the shift commercial of yourself between the roomat the back of the office something like that. It's not. But it'sinteresting because I would have said that, you know, a product led grossconversation would probably be led more by a product marketing pus an if you win. So yeah, I like I like to pick up, I need torelatively destructive coming from the chief commercial of his helm. Yeah, indeed,and I think it suits well into some of the biases I had in thein the thirteen years ever since I was...

...involved. And can a tech salestech rev just over that time. It's not, you know, obviously enterpriseand sales works. Of course it does. Nobody saying that, but there isa slight shift in the way that buyers buy that and I think whatplg product like growth, taps into is that kind of macrol the much wideof you. That is slowly shifting slightly and, as we'll go into generally, the more incess things become competitive and saturated, then things like product ledprinciples probably stick out as a bit of our competitive advantage for what you do, especially what we do. We're in fraud tech, which, man,that's been around like twenty our years, right, cyber security is mass yeah, it's super, super and is way to go about it. Yeah,and it's complicated, right, I get it from the other side of thefence. If you've got a risk and fraud problem, man, is sohard to find, you know, relevant tech for what you need and whenyou do, it seems like there's ten other options at least for what youdo. And so I think some of the principles will go into and shareand they're not totally divergent from, you know, kind of what we doat sales, but they just put a different twist on how that dynamic workswhen you engage with a buyer. That's the kind of feet key thing.Yes, I would have said that use use product led growth into difference aspectwhen the respect of acquisition on must and one aspect of retention of the customer. But but let's get straight into the practicality of it. So I'll doyou. How do you apply that concept of product led growth at seem?Yeah, lots and lots of ways and I think I think what's good iswe go back to first principles with tech, and that's kind of mainly my backgroundis, even though being on the red side, ultimately I've been reallyfortunate to align with companies that we're seen at the forefront of what they weredoing at the time and then we're, you know, successful enough to beacquired, quite frankly, so acquired by the likes of visa, the likesof Amex and the likes of in genical payments over the last three kind ofadventures, and but all of them it...

...was about trying to find the techthat was seen as the cutting edge at what they do. So your conversationswith prospects ultimately go back to our first principle of having something that really helpsstraight away. So what we do at say on it to make a practicalin terms of when we talk about product like growth, is we try anddo things very differently from the traditional engagement model. If someone's trying to buysomething, especially in fraud tech, the three things classically we always talk aboutis man go ahead and do your research online and find competitive solutions and justtry and do three things. Number one, try and first of all find outthe pricing for it on their website. You know, that's a pretty kindof low barrier to what you want to you know, find out beforeyou buy something. Right, it's just what the heck the pricing is?Number One, pricing. Number two, try and go ahead and, ifyou're interested enough, book a natural demo. Was So one in the next thirtyminutes. Try and do that. If you see a demo page isgenerally a proxy for contact us. It's really frustrating, right. It's justthey'll get back to you, whenever they get back to you, and chancesare they're going to qualify the Hecko of you, because if you're too smallthen are going to help, and that really that's really frustrating. And thenthirdly, and this is our bigger bet, it's going to move very deav leda lot of these decisions and it's going to be experience of how somebodyinteractive your API, how quickly it is to use. Is the documentation understandableand can someone get you in in their product woradmap? And that's about samplinga bit of value before you even have to interact with a human. Sothose are the three things are say on. We believe unbelievably strongly in so.Our website is our shop and it is the main interaction point for ourcustomers. So you can book a them all straightaway, you can sample theproduct and, thirdly, you can see clear pricing and everything about Plg isabout transparency and you can do all that. We thought interacting with the SOLS person. Yeah, spun on, this is cool. Okay, cool,I get it. So it's really that...

...sort of self service kind of okay, you know what, we're going to be very honest with you and wewon't do it all our competitors think is the right thing, which is aI'm gonna call you and I'm going to try to absolutely tell you that Ineed to meet with you. Then when I meet with you, I willtry to Foscel Demo on you that you may not want to seem as myprocess. You know, we want to do a demo, we want toshoe your stuff and then, at the end of the day, more,we'll ask you if you've got a project, if you'd have a project. You'venever I often again and you know. So okay. So basically what you'retrying to do that is almost educate the prospect online with full transparency andalmost building up that sort of relationship where they will trust the brand a littlebit more by the time young gage and and I guess by the time youengage, you've got a better qualification of a better positioning from the prospects isof his interest towards your solution. Yeah, that's that's a hundred percent a right. And just to extend on that. So the other way to look atit is and the dynamic of the engagement, classically speaking, and enterprise, midsize up enterprise, up sales. Right, it's a it's a topdown approach. That's why you go ahead and work, you know, witha partner like you to get interested, but then also when you engage yourown inhouse team, those guys are probably engaging at CX level or exact levelto try and get sponsorship. Why is that the case? Because, classically, to deal with complicated problems that need some sort of like endorsement from thetop down. The Bet we're making is the SASS world is moving more andmore towards bottom up adoption. So we've seen this another domains, like slack, like twilly Oh. We're essentially the end operator has a problem and theend operator is trying to look for a tool online, as we all are, as we all are consumers, right, we all research and the hecker stuff, and they want to kind of experience value to sort to help theirday job. They and they out, and so our kind of approaches byenabling those kind of bottom up or operative people, then they're they're the earlyfans, and letting them do free trials,...

...letting them experience a product without anykind of friction, means that we're not saying top down doesn't exist.Of course, you know we're adding in an outbound component to what we doat say on but it makes a conversation so much richer when you can turnaround to the CIO and you can say, Hey, I see that your teamhas already been utilizing our product for the last six months and their usagerate is this. Can we have a chat about you know about this ina wider scale. That's a much more rich conversation of course, now appreciatethat next Prophet since, but do you believe it's that product led gross strategyis is relevant for companies, whether much more complex? So Cycle. Sowhat I'm thinking about the whatever when I speak about complex things like could,because there is not some interpretation. For me, it's kind of the mootsby your personal journey. So I'm coming with something you know slightly is verysuccessful. But technically you could have what Sapp you could have skype for business, you could have lots of us are stuff. It's like it's just whateverybody wants, like because make it's cool. But you know, some of ourcomes of a very destructive solution. They basically creating a category for themselvesbecause no one did what they had before. So do you think the sort ofstrategy as you got a see and could could be applied to the small, complex and cycles? Well, first of all you may have to kissa few frogs before you can find your prince charming and the game we getactually sponsor you, actually take some money out of that boocket to finance yourproject. But also, when you get there, they really want to youmay have approve of value. That is already asking for a certain level ofcommitment from the prospects organization because they may have to give critical information or theymay have to put up some sellvers or whatever it is. Yeah, allthose dynamics are like bray. The realities, all those still exist and in whatwe do with risk, TEP protect, that's really complicated. That's so that'sa really that's full of loss of...

...dependencies, lots of data security,lots of data right and in this time in age or GDPR and being basedon the EU, it's it's a really tricky thing. So this actually happensto us as well, for sure. So I think the key principle whenlooking at something like a product like growth is to take away and concepts liketime to value. That's really what you're looking to get the prospect to experience. Now we segment o our product, so there's lots of different use caseswhich can use us for as most fraud tech you can, and it's abouttrying to package it up so that little bits are understood and you can essentiallysample something tangible, which is easy to do without necessarily having to do amassive, complicated project. That's the first thing. So time to value.So when we talk about product like growth, and a lot of our analytics anddata and measurement are around trying to help convert customers to something that givesthem a light bulb moment or an Ahr moment. So the cool thing fromthis Sam rays. These are BETC concepts. These aren't just be to be things. So I'll use example. Like you know, look at spotify,look at Netflix, like you can bet they are spending their gazillions of researchwith data scientists checking when you download that product, how engaged are you quickly, and they are adjusting everything right from AB testing the language they're using tothe Cetas a call to actions. They are trying to Tweeke you towards becausethat's what they're trying to do. They trying to get you to experience valueas soon as possible. We all know this intuitively, but where it's notbeing well adopted is in certain spaces, I would say payments and fraud isa little bit behind, but in Sass this is very well understood. That'sthe way that we go at say on about it. So the more complicated, I would argue, the more ripi it is for PLG. Okay,so what consert you think so. You just started to mention that. Sowhat concert should we think from etc. To a braid to be to beingthat that particular instance would be do the...

...key tactic gold things. That's ifI'm starting my Johnny, I should do straight away. I should be lookingat straight away. Yeah, so the bar is said, really high.From an experiential point of view, right, we are now conditioned with all thesame things we get from our BTC experience. We should be thinking aboutfrom a B tob point of view, incorporating those. So some of theones we have, for instance on a tactical level, are one of theobjections to any risk and fraud techs is such a complicated product project to goahead and do. If you are doing it, even when you experience timeto value, that just gets you over a certain ill. But really,for us it you don't really see value until your life with a live environmentand you see live transactions, and that's a reality, no matter what anybodysays, that's the reality. So for us we try and flip on hishead. So for us we don't have multi year contracts. Really we're morelike Netflix, where it's a thirty day contract and it's a complete flip,because nobody else does that. And then, but the psychology behind it is manit puts all the product risk on us as a vendor, as aSASS company, and it's designed so that is d risking. From the CFO'spoint of view, that's that's a that's one betc concept, right, isthat. We're all used to that. Imagine Netflix try to tie you infor a year, right, that would suck. You know what? Mynext question is about all your play that to the Sun. Is Business willand I think you know this is this is some yet we realize as well. We really is at up, because we are savvy's company and you cango and get the twelve months contract and stuff like that. But the barrieris let people, I could. We need you to prove yourself and andif the if the sad sees good, it just have tways good. Wewant to keep going. If he's that good, we want to be ableto change. Yeah, the hundred percent, a hundred percent. And and youknow the reality of situation is is think about the back psychology for someoneto choose to say working with you guys. It's not like a quick decision,right. There's a lot of kind of logic. There's a lot ofjustifications, a lot of business case and by the time someones actually invest thattime with you, would be very rare...

...that somebody would ramp you up forthirty days and it would suck and there was and there's no reparable way tokind of do that and turn you off, because that's not what both parties wonthey want to make it work, of course. So that so itdoes. It does make sense as well. But I get it. We're movingfrom a legacy world of book to revenue. Some of us is accountancylegacy and how SASS companies have done it, specially in payments and fraud. Butfor us that's a that's a that's an easy thing. We can learnfrom the BTC world. Other concepts in the BTC world the level of measurementon analytic usage. So if you're going to go self serve, like youknow what say on does, then you better be great at measuring all thoseinteraction points behind the scenes, because then you can start segmenting your users andyou can start doing things like communications where show appropriate. So the person thatstarts to trial account doesn't ever actually go into the system and interact with.It is very different from the one that invites ten teammates and the ten teammatesstart a you know, using the system. So you want to start segmenting sothat way there's clever enough communication that's appropriate for that user. And whatwe think about, say, one is trying to spend time with the oneswhich win instead of the ones which aren't going to engage. We're not tryingto push a rock up a hill right. We're trying to work with the guysthat get value. And it should be mentioned we're early stage, sowe're all about trying to get fans. So that's why these BTC concepts areso key to us, because we don't care about converting the whole market yetand we care about finding, you know, those fans which are going to turnaround and talk about the net be net proponent, promoters of sale.So that question what was kind of coming to the back of my mind.I've been I've been in full conversation with investors. This is the companies investingin startups and now, lad sat to days you need to have recurring revenue, you need to have multier. We speak about Aarr, we speak aboutvaluation. So do you think that product led a project it we speaking aboutit one of the tactical aspect, which...

...is like the serty days, kindof nuts at any time, and you know sen self type of stuff.But do you think this is so? Yet would be sustainable for you,let's say, in five years from now, Daniels, from now, when youhave to move to a more traditional subscription, because you can? Younow like the the equivalent of a seal as farce. You're not the equivalentof a service. Now, you know, the equivalent of a slack and it'slike probably get go to their clients and if someone wants like they wantedso bad, look it's twelve months minimum and that that's fine, because Iwanted so bad what my friends you it. So you think it's just sill everyonein the long time, what do you think you would have to youwhen you're going to Fard it? You may have to change that from productled to a more SASS big company type of approach. Yeah, and youknow, we remember the SASS numbers came out a little bit earlier this yearand they reported a significant portion of their rev when they pass the x billionN Arr was down to enterprise. Now slack. You never solved like astraditional enterprise. But it makes sense, right. I look at big theyare now. That's where the market is. So I think everyone adapts as ashort answer, right, and to this, we're at the stage worth. We're just three years old, so we get we're in the very fundstage, right. We're in. We're in the hey, we've got abunch of earlier doopter fans and we're just getting we're getting dragged into bigger andbigger deals and we're trying to keep to ICP ideal customer profile. That's veryimportant to us. But I would say inevitably we're already being dragged into dealswhere the customer wants, Hey, we don't want to sign a thirty day'snotice that we love the idea, but actually we need you for six totwelve months because it takes us a lot longer to go ahead and find theredundancy if something happens. So this is already happening organically, of course.Maybe on to that topic of VC's, a kind of investment and how theylook at kpies like us. So if we're PLG, then I would saythat it just moves the type of metrics that we that they look at forus slightly different, but it's the same basis as still monthly recurring revenue,MRR, and it's the velocity right. It's how much growth are you stillgetting? And you know, you can...

...still measure churn from that and youcan still measure arr extrapolate Arr from that as well, and so those stillmeant those same metrics are very much still being tracked on our end. That'sno different. But using PLG, I think the fact that we have,you know, like a third day's notice isn't so much a barrier because otherSASS companies as kind of is kind of become more standard now across other Sassand you can measure the churn. The key is, you know, isa turn ramping up, you know, with that the tricky thing from ourend. We've had that from day one and it goes back to Ray.For us, the founder story of say on, you know, literally twoyoung, smart guys out of core vinish university in Budapest. They were acrypto exchange initially and they were hit by fraud and they looked at the marketbecause they needed the fraud solution right there, right then. Otherwise you're going toburn. And there was great solutions out there. There's brilliant solutions,but they would all take weeks, if not moms to get up and runningand they they didn't have the he affordability. So everything about saying was designed aroundthat principle, around kind of no barrier commercially to kind of getting upand running. It's it's some of our customers call us. I don't knowif it's good or bad, but the stripe of fraud prevention and I thinkthat's a good analogy because in the same way for payments that they made itso easy to work with them. It's kind of what we're trying to dofor the more complicated world of fraud and risk. Yeah, what thanks.By inside GIMMY. We get into the end of the decisions. Then,fortunately, and what we asked usually at that at that point of the ofthe conversation is if people wants to carry on the conversation, get your brainup and carry on. I'll discuss about seeing speak about your solution and knowyou could add them's the best way to get into trees, Jimmy. Soour website, say on dot Io is, is a great place where reachable,you know, pretty much most times, and they're funny enough. I'm manningthe chat just now excutely. Really want to get in touch during workinghour. Is that I'm part of the...

...chat team just now, otherwise Linkedinas so just my name, Jimmy Fom Fong. That's perfect. Well,many things. Once again, Jimmy eat was an absolute pleasure to have onthis for today. Great to be on. Thanks very thanks again. operatics hasredefined the meaning of revenue generation for technology companies worldwide. While the traditionalconcepts of building and managing inside sales teams inhouse has existed for many years,companies are struggling with a lack of focus, agility and scale required in today's fastand complex world of enterprise technology sales. See How operatics can help your companyaccelerate pipeline at operatics dotnet. You've been listening to be tob revenue acceleration. To ensure that you never miss an episode, subscribe to the show inyour favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time,.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (120)