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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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Now displaying: Page 1
Nov 17, 2016

Nathan interviews Tanner Larsson, co-founder of 80/20 Media, CEO of e-commerce brand incubator BuildGrowsSale.com. He’s also the founder and facilitator of an exclusive e-commerce syndicate called Black Label – composed of the best and brightest marketers, CEOs, and entrepreneurs in the e-commerce space. He recently published his first book called Ecommerce Evolved which offers readers a box view of how successful e-commerce brands build, grow, and scale.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Rocket Fuel
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Ed O’Keefe
  • Favorite online tool? —FastStone Capture
  • Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— Not even close
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “You don’t have to fund everything out of your own pocket, there are other options available”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:27 – Nathan introduces Tanner to the show
  • 02:15 – Tanner’s ecommerce world started in 2001
    • 02:20 – Started in eBay and Tanner became a powerseller
      • 02:31 – Tanner was doing $ 50,000 - $ 100,000 a month in eBay
  • 03:00 – “There’s no reason not to sell a physical product”
  • 03:25 – Tanner and his team have a number of e-commerce brands
    • 03:36 – 2 main brands have done $6.5 million in a year
  • 03:48 – They had a problem in production
    • 04:06 – “We’ve had different bottlenecks that prevented us from growing at the rate we could have grown”
  • 04:30 – The flashlight market
    • 04:38 – Tanner doesn’t want to sell what everybody is selling
    • 04:47 – The gap they saw is between the lower price entry level flashlight and high-end flashlight
    • 05:03 – Tanner and his team develop their own flashlight and a kit
    • 05:17 – Truegunner.com
    • 05:25 – The flashlight is in a sales funnel
      • 05:34 – The funnel path
  • 06:02 – The bestseller flashlight is the M600 tactical utility flashlight
    • 06:07 - $22 manufactured price from China
    • 06:32 – They had a much higher per unit cost and much lower profit margin on the first order
      • 06:43  - First order was at a minimum which is a thousand
      • 07:03 – Total is $30,000 tied up which equals to $3 per unit price
    • 07:52 – It took 7 months before the first order started production
    • 07:58 – The back and forth from the manufacturing county took time
      • 08:05 – Shipping takes a week which includes the revises that needed on the product
    • 08:30 – “If you’re building your product from the ground, there’s a whole back and forth with the manufacturer”
    • 09:00 – Started selling on November 2015
      • 09:05 – Sold about 4400 units for 12 months
      • 09:21 – Total money in from this product is around $ 150,000 - $ 160, 000
    • 09:50 – 99% of the funds came from Tanner
    • 10:12 – The downside is some raw materials are specialized
      • 10:27 – They have to buy raw materials in advance to prevent going out of stock
  • 11:28 – Most of their sales are funnel driven
  • 11:43 – They were using ultracart but shifted back to infusionsoft
  • 12:09 – They are also using Hotjar records visitor interaction. Like heat mapping
  • 12:43 – They spend $13 per user acquisition on the front end
    • 13:03 – They breakeven in the funnel
  • 13:30 – They also have subscription plans
  • 14:01 – They have 7000 paying user
  • 14:36 – They also have drop-off rates
  • 16:00 – Connect with Tanner through his website
  • 18:30 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • Look for alternative funding. Don’t shoulder everything.
  • If you don’t know something, that doesn’t mean you can’t explore.
  • Sourcing from manufacturers abroad takes patience and a lot of research.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • Toptal – Nathan found his development team using Toptal  for his new business Send Later. He was able to keep 100% equity and didn’t have to hire a co-founder due to the quality of Toptal  developers.
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible.
  • Freshbooks – The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
  • 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.
  • Assistant.to – The site Nathan uses to book meetings with one email.
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Drip – Nathan uses Drip’s email automation platform and visual campaign builder to build his sales funnel.
  • BuildGrowScale.com – Tanner’s website
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
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