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SaaS Interviews with CEOs, Startups, Founders

What if you knew data behind the fastest growing SaaS companies today? Each morning join Nathan Latka as he spends 15 minutes interviewing SaaS founders. You'll learn how SaaS CEO's launched their startup and grew it into a business. SaaS Founders range from bootstrapped to funded, MVP to 10,000 customers, pre revenue to pre IPO.
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Jun 11, 2016

Khalid Saleh, co-author of the bestselling book Conversion Optimisation. Khalid’s an expert on conversion whose company, Invesp, has grown companies from tiny startups to giant powerhouses. Listen as Khalid and Nathan talk leaving a salaried job, turning a consulting business into an SaaS giant, and running a global fundraising round.


Favorite Book? – The Lean Startup
What CEO do you follow? — Alex Turnbull
What is your favorite online tool?— Evernote
Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— Hell, no!
If you could let your 20 year old self know one thing, what would it be?— That I need to be laser-focused. There’s opportunity everywhere - you just have to focus on it.


Time Stamped Show Notes:
01:20 – Nathan’s introduction
02:20 – Welcoming Khalid to the show
02:35 – Invesp makes money by consulting on conversion optimisation
03:00 – Companies pay a monthly retainer for ongoing optimisation services
03:45 – Charge a minimum of $8,000 per month
04:00 – Companies stay 15-24 months on average
04:25 – Invesp was founded in 2006
04:35 – Made around $15-20k in their first year
05:00 – Khaleed was 31 when he left his salaried job to launch Invesp
05:20 – “An amazing employee but difficult to manage”
05:40 – While working for Motorola, Khalid noticed the problem of conversion rates
05:52 – Gave up a $200k salary as one of the top software architects in America
06:30 – Khalid’s wife is one of his business partner
07:00 – 4 partners in the company
07:35 – Moving into providing a SaaS platform for conversion optimisation
08:30 – Made close to $700k in 2014 - the year they decided to take fewer projects
09:15 – “It’s been a gamble to focus on software development”
09:30 – Initially wanted to make an AB testing platform...but decided to move into other products
10:35 – Several companies are interested in funding - but many are asking for more equity than they want to give up
11:01 – A VC in Russia was willing to give $1.5 million for 45% equity
11:20 – “He said I could probably get the same offer for 25% in San Francisco...but it’s a different market in each country”
11:55 – The SaaS business will be a product that’s offered by Invesp
12:40 – Connect with Khaleed at the Invesp Blog or on twitter
15:30 – The Famous Five


3 Key Points:
If you want to expand, be willing to move sideways and think creatively about where your business can go. Consulting doesn’t scale the way SaaS can.
Think very carefully about how much equity you’re willing to give up in a fundraising round.
Interest means nothing without conversion. Optimising conversion rates for your business can boost your growth enormously.


Resources Mentioned:
Freshbooks - The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for cheapest price possible.
Leadpages – The drag and drop tool Nathan uses to quickly create his webinar landing pages which convert at 35%+
Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he's driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5 hour drive) to listen to audio books.

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

 

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