Lecture 19: Sales and Marketing
Link: How to Start a Startup
(You can find notes to the other lectures here.)
Tyler Bosmeny (@bosmeny)
As a founder you’re the sales people.
Talking to your users is selling.
Passion and industry knowledge trump sales experience.
Prospecting is the process of figuring out who will even take your call.
In the early days go to a lot of conferences.
Get attendee lists in advance and email every single person to try to set up meetings.
A lot of people don’t know how to write cold email. It should be really concise.
When you get (potential customers) on the phone remember to shut up.
You really have to have kind this inhuman and unreasonable willingness to follow up and drive things to closure.
Your goal should be to get people to a yes or no as quickly as you can. Where you die is if you have a thousand maybes.
You gotta remember what your goal is.
Avoid the free trial trap.
At the end of a free trial you’re going to have to sell them all over again.
Michael Seibel (@mwseibel)
The best way you can make your pitch better is to improve your company.
Just talk less.
The thirty second page is three sentences:
- What does your company do?
- How big is the market?
- How much traction do you have?
If in one sentence you cannot tell your mom what you do then rework your sentence.
Use simple language.
It cannot be complicated.
If your team has done something that has made investors money then you should mention that.
Your only way to build credentials is if you have accomplished something.
The more you talk about a bad thing the worse it looks.
Investors like to invest based on traction.
If someone who has passed on your company offers to make introductions pass on that.
Fundraising is a sprint not a marathon.
Schedule all investor meetings in one week.
Make sure the person you’re talking to knows what you do. (Dalton Caldwell)
Actually ask for money. (Dalton Caldwell)
You can tell when people are passionate and know their business very well. (Qasar Younis)
After the meeting follow up. (Qasar Younis)
Anything other than a check or a wire of funds is a no. (Qasar Younis)
Do due diligence on investors. (Qasar Younis)
You’re selling part of your company. You should know who you sell it to. (Qasar Younis)
Fundraising does not equal success. (Dalton Caldwell)