Went through 60+ Phone/In-person Job Interviews. 6+ years in Technology Sales and Business Development. Sales Experience @ Fortune 500 Tech Company, Series B Startup, and "Unicorn" Tech Company in the Silicon Valley. Focus on new-new logo acquisition and sales development outreach.
I've sold marketing solutions to folks in the eCommerce space before and without knowing what type of marketing you want to do, there are several ways you can begin advertising your products.
You are absolutely correct in your statement that marketing is very important. What do you want your buyers to wear? Why should they buy your product? Who is your target audience? Which geography do you plan on kicking off your business? Having these questions answered will help you target the correct market and begin crafting your marketing strategy.
I am happy to jump on a call to go through your various channels/options in which you can begin marketing.
Having worked in the technology space for over 6 years and established strategic partnerships, there are several ways you can look for firms or individuals that needs your services.
From what it sounds like, you are looking to help people outsource their app development/support for their company While there is definitely a market for this type of service, you need to start getting granular and drilling down to the ideal industry that needs your services. You will need to employ a dual approach of cold outreach and strategic marketing to generate your business partnership.
First, you need to narrow down the ideal types of businesses you want to target. What types of companies or individuals are in need of your services the most? Why? What is the value proposition for them to use your service and why should they care?
After determining this, it's time to put together some marketing campaigns to help drive the value proposition of your service. There might not be a best platform to find or advertise your service- you will need to try many different avenues. Perhaps you can start here on Clarity.
I've spoken with hundreds of companies in your shoes so I am happy to jump on a call and communicate several methods that might work for your company as well.
Having played both roles of public speaking and time management for many years, I can honestly say there is definitely a market for this. There are so many new entrepreneurs and business owners now and many of these folks say that time is their most valuable asset. If you can show tangible ways how an entrepreneur can save time and in the process become more productive/better at what they do, you will have a market to serve.
I think public speaking has more potential: https://brandongaille.com/14-fear-public-speaking-statistics/
According to this article, 3/4 people (75%) fear speaking in public. If you can coach people on how to get over this, you will most definitely fulfill your passion and chances are, you will find someone that has a fear of public speaking for your market fit.
I have helped people get over fear of public speaking as well. Let me know if you want to get on a call for some tips and pointers on ways to coach people to defeat their fear of public speaking.
I have worked in technology sales for 6+ years now and have seen firsthand how SMB, high growth mid-market, and Enterprise companies structure their sales teams.
To your point, small and medium businesses have sales reps directly reporting to the CEO because there is NO need to have a middle layer of sales management. I have seen so many smb companies run without a head of sales because they have not reached the level of scale that requires a revenue leader. You're saying the above is a bad fit; however, many smbs who don't plan to scale are perfectly happy with the status quo because it works for them.
If your opinion is different than theirs, it will be on you to demonstrate the business-tangible value of having someone run their revenue operations so they can focus on strategy, vision, etc. This requires building tailored business cases to each CEO that you speak with.
For the SMBs out there, it will be incredibly difficult to convince CEOs (all CEOs are essentially evaluated primarily on revenue generation) to hand over arguably the most important part of their business to someone else.
That being said, I would start by examining which clients you have historically had success working with and use that information to create multiple lead generation campaigns to go after similar companies. Happy to get on a call and walk through a lead generation process for your service (inbound leads, thought leadership, email marketing strategies for outbounding, etc.)
I like how you have identified your passion and understand who you want your target audience to be. I have sold technology solutions for 6+ years to entrepreneurs and business owners- a big part of the selling process requires value-adding, which can only be achieved by understanding the minds of your target audience.
To find a niche, you need to start by asking yourself what kind of value you can bring to your specific target audience of entrepreneurs or business owners. Everyone has limited attention span these days and unless you can figure out what these people care about and how your coaching/consulting services can benefit them, it will be difficult to connect and add value for the entrepreneurs.
In short, you should determine your niche by figuring out what these folks care about and then hone your craft around providing value for those individuals.
Happy to get on a phone call if you want to talk about specifics.
I have 6+ years of experience selling enterprise software and one of the products I sold at Oracle included their SaaS LMS application as part of the whole HCM suite.
Your question about comp definitely depends on the industry, location of the individual, experience level, average deal size, etc. However, VERY GENERAL guidelines that SaaS companies follow tend to be quota = 5x to 10x their salary. For example:
- If a sales reps salary is 60k, then their quota should be 300k- 600k (very rough estimate).
- For each deal that the rep closes, they should get a minimum 10% on each deal until the rep hits quota.
- If the rep hits quota, there should be an accelerator on their comp plan (15%-25% of each deal sold) so that they will be motivated to keep on selling (capping your commission will be capping your growth).
- After the rep hits 200% or 300% of their quota, the accelerator stays at 15% or comes down to 10%
- PLEASE READ: All of the above is very dependent on average deal size, time to closure, among other factors that I would be happy to get into if we jump on a call.
The most important factor here is to make sure your quotas are REALISTIC and ATTAINABLE- having a rep come in with an unattainable quota only to have them leave in a few months will be detrimental to your growth and even be a huge cost to your business.
Happy to answer any and all questions in regards to quota structuring, LMS sales strategies, selling to the right lines of business, etc. It is a super competitive field and I understand through first-hand experience how difficult it is to displace any companies' current application suite. Maybe I can help provide some insight into this aspect of your business as well.
I've been selling technology solutions for 6+ years now and one of the companies I worked with, Visually, sold animations/short form videos to content creators and companies.
After taking a look at your website, I already see one marketing method that does not cost too much money for you: customer testimonials! You need to ask your current customers (paying or otherwise) to put their logo/channels/reviews on your website to show others that there are reputable people that stand by your work. After all, your best method of marketing should come from word of mouth from your current customers that are happy with the work you've been able to do for them.
After getting some testimonials, you can start utilizing Twitter, LinkedIn, email, etc. to broadcast how you've been able to help these businesses with your animations and subsequently attract others to the value proposition of your product (animations).
You've got a super good thing going right now and the fact that you are seeking help means you are extremely resourceful- a characteristic that will prove incredibly useful in whatever path you decide to pursue.
I'm happy to jump on a call to provide you with some insight as to what your messaging should be in those LinkedIn/Twitter/Customer Testimonials to attract more customers.
I have had a LinkedIn profile since 2013 and my job as a technology sales executive requires me to peruse many different LinkedIn profiles every single day in hopes of prospecting and grabbing people's attention. There have been many LinkedIn profiles that I have seen- good and bad.
You should be the one writing your business profile on LinkedIn because this is YOUR personal brand. It is does not belong to anyone else and you should be the one to take utmost care in creating your value proposition from your LinkedIn profile that caters to your target audience. No one else should be able to articulate your business value as well as you can.
That being said, I can definitely get on a call and offer you tips and pointers on how to structure a successful LinkedIn profile but I want to reiterate that NO one will be able to help you get your "perfect full content" that can act as a super magnet for qualified lead inquiries because qualified prospects, at least in the beginning, need to come from targeted, sniper-approach outreach to your ideal target audience.
Happy to jump on a call to explain in more detail how to do successful outreach and subsequently using that same outreach to eventually create qualified inbound inquiries about your offers.
Having sold SaaS applications for early stage startups and Fortune 500 companies, there's a lot of factors in play which determine if a SaaS product can "self-propagate" enough of its own leads to which $1M in revenue.
There's several fundamental levels of analysis that need to be taken into account before jumping to the conclusion of limited growth potential.
- What does your marketing strategy look like? Are you targeting the correct potential buyers in your campaigns to generate these leads?
- What is the average deal size? Is there a way to expand your average deal size to help you reach $1M in revenue? - - Are you priced competitively? How long are your sales cycles?
Lead count as a result of pipeline growth/generation is one of many factors that may reveal growth potential. If your SaaS product is top-notch in your own eyes, you still need to figure out if your application has a good fit in your target markets. After doing so, you can start tweaking your marketing campaigns to self propagate more leads and reach your growth potential.
Happy to jump on a call to get more information about your product and see where I can help determine if there is limited growth potential.
I want to start off by saying good for you in terms of taking the first leap into the startup world at such a young age. I've worked at technology companies for almost a decade now and can tell you what my developer colleagues go through on a day-by-day basis if you are interested.
You have already answered your own question in your first statement. Your first startup failed due to lack of experience, contacts, etc. Here is your chance join your industry of choice and learn the inner workings of how a business/company/startup works as a front-end developer.
My advice to you is join a company to gain valuable experience but keep working on your dream job in your free time (after work, weekends, etc.) According to inc.com, the average age of an entrepreneur is 40 years old anyway: https://www.inc.com/melanie-curtin/attention-millennials-average-entrepreneur-is-this-old-when-they-found-their-first-startup.html. Most likely, they have usually worked for a couple of years before starting their own venture. It would be a good idea to gain some business skills at a corporate job and in parallel, work on your startup on the side. To quote the great Nick Loper, "Your 9-5 May Make You a Living, But Your 5-9 Makes You Alive!" (https://www.sidehustlenation.com/side-hustle-show/).
Good luck and let me know if you want to jump on a call to learn more about the pros and cons of joining the corporate world.