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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
Jan 3, 2017

Nathan Barry, CEO of ConvertKit – an email marketing company for professional bloggers. Listen as Nathan shares how he manages to stay self-funded while, at the same time, increasing the growth and bloggers’ interest in using ConvertKit.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Predictable Success
  • What CEO do you follow? –  N/A
  • Favorite online tool? — Workable
  • Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— No
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Pick just one thing you love to do and do it really well

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:50 – Nathan introduces Barry to the show
  • 02:15 – ConvertKit is a SaaS company and has around 10,000 bloggers
  • 02:47 – ConvertKit’s pricing depends on the blogger’s subscribers count
  • 03:04 – Average revenue per user per month
    • 03:24 – 65% of the users are on $48/month plan
  • 03:48 – ConvertKit’s cash flow is doing well
  • 04:15 – Annual plan has a big impact on churn
  • 04:50 – Barry pushes the annual plan on Cyber Monday
    • 05:00 – Average annual plan total
  • 05:30 – ConvertKit had a free 1 month promotion for new users
  • 05:56 – ConvertKit has a 40K email list – half of it is from content marketing, the other half is from webinars
    • 06:30 – ConvertKit has added 25K new people in their list this year from joint webinars alone
    • 06:55 – Barry is using Google Hangout and Chatroll for the webinars
    • 07:20 – ConvertKit is doing 10-20 webinars a month
  • 07:53 – There are 2 people in Barry’s team who are involved in the webinar process
    • 08:28 – The team is trying to get people who use MailChimp or Aweber to switch to ConvertKit
    • 08:38 – It is a 2-step direct sales process
  • 09:54 – Barry shares how he mitigates the show up rate in their webinars
  • 10:54 – Some of the bloggers reach out to ConvertKit and some find them through other bloggers
  • 11:16 – Average expenses a month in affiliate payouts
    • 11:33 – A quarter of ConvertKit’s revenue comes from affiliate programs
  • 12:10 – 2015 total revenue is around $300K
  • 12:20 – 2016 average revenue
  • 12:34 – ConvertKit is self-funded
    • 12:44 – It was an intentional choice
    • 13:03 – Barry shares what he did when they were almost running out of funds
  • 14:15 – ConvertKit’s gross profit and total money in the bank
  • 14:38 – ConvertKit just had a big expense from the annual plan switch
  • 15:15 – Gross monthly customer churn
  • 16:15 – Expansion is ConvertKit’s next focus
  • 17:08 – Current CAC
  • 18:28 – Team size and location
  • 18:50 – Average headcount expenses
  • 19:14 – ConvertKit was launched in 2013
  • 20:18 – There are two advisers who have a share in the company
  • 20:45 – Connect with Nathan through ConvertKit and his website
  • 23:20 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • You can stay self-funded with a fast growing business and by managing your funds properly.
  • Joint webinars and 2-point direct sales are excellent options to increase mailing list.
  • Pick one thing you love to do, focus in, and do it really well.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • 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
  • 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
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible.
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books.
  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens and follow-up with email sequences
  • ConvertKit.com – Barry’s business website
  • NathanBarry.com – Barry’s personal website
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
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