Discover more from Kyle Poyar’s Growth Unhinged
Reflecting on 2021
My top 5 newsletter articles of the year
👋 Hi, I’m Kyle and welcome to my newsletter, Growth Unhinged. Every other week I take a closer look at what drives a SaaS company’s growth. Expect deep dive takes on SaaS pricing, product-led growth, public company benchmarks, and much more.
Back in March I took a leap of faith to start a new biweekly newsletter, Growth Unhinged.
Since then I’ve been overwhelmed by the response and the support from this community. THANK YOU for giving your honest feedback, pushing this newsletter to get better, inspiring me to write even when I didn’t feel like it, and sharing Growth Unhinged with colleagues & friends.
Some quick stats as we wrap up 2021:
19 newsletter articles (that’s a lot of writing!)
3,350+ subscribers, up from 0 in March
50% average open rate
Selected as one of the top 50 newsletters for founders by Indie Hackers
$0 in revenue (does that make me a bad pricing person? 🤣)
I wanted to look back at readers’ favorite growth articles from 2021. Here are the top 5.
Have ideas for 2022? Just click “reply” or drop a comment below.
Figuring out which features to put in which packages is a never ending challenge for SaaS companies (at least for companies that are regularly shipping new products). I shared - for the first time ever - my top 10 guiding principles for designing SaaS packages.
Pro-tip: SSO is no longer *just* an Enterprise feature.
#4 - You can’t win
Against all odds, Freshworks - the India-based help desk, CRM & IT service management company - went public in September 2021.
Founder & CEO Girish Mathrubootham ticked through all the reasons why they couldn’t win including:
They were in a crowded market
They were trying to build a global SaaS company based in India
They faced large, well-funded competitors
Still, Freshworks managed to break through by pioneering a PLG strategy with products purpose-built for users’ needs, low total cost of ownership and quick time to value. This article dove into how Freshworks rewrote the traditional SaaS growth playbook.
Churn can be one of the biggest inhibitors to long-term growth. But it’s easy to dismiss churn as just a “Customer Success problem” rather than a business-wide responsibility.
This article unpacked 8 things that can really move the needle on churn. None require adding more CSMs.
In a PLG business, your product is a primary driver of how you acquire, convert, and expand your customers. But who actually owns “growth” at a PLG company? Is it the Product team? 😱
With the help of expert operators, I tackled the role of Product vs. Growth vs. Marketing in a growing PLG company along with where to draw the lines around each team.
We’ve grown accustomed to the traditional set of SaaS metrics as just part of how to operate a SaaS business. Here’s the thing: the traditional SaaS metrics playbook is fundamentally broken in the age of PLG and usage-based pricing.
I unpacked why traditional SaaS metrics may no longer apply along with what KPIs to actually look at to manage a SaaS business.
Here’s what else I’m thinking about this week:
HashiCorp became the latest PLG IPO and is now worth $15B. The company’s new logo growth appears to have accelerated as a result of bets on Cloud, PLG, and UBP (what’s not to love?).
On Thursday, December 16th my OpenView colleagues and I will be discussing our 2022 predictions in this holiday edition of BUILDing Together. Grab your spot.
It’s December. That means your 2022 budget is drafted, circulated, revised, completed and board approved… right? Just kidding! If you’re thinking about where to allocate those extra $$, take a look at this post by Curt Townshend.
Predictable revenue forecasting *is* possible with usage-based pricing. Say what? To find out how, take a look at this advice from Avesdo CRO Jonathan Tice.
Net dollar retention (NDR) is now more predictive of valuation than revenue growth on it’s own. Learn how to lead growth beyond contract close from investor Chris Gaertner.
LastPass is spinning out of LogMeIn. Will it be more free to be PLG? Let’s hope so.