Ep7 – How to bootstrap a SaaS company using Content Marketing with Omar Zenhom

“I think a lot of people get funding when they don’t even know for sure if the product is worth selling.”
-Omar Zenhom, co-founder of the $100MBA and Webinar Ninja

Episode 7 of the How To SaaS podcast with Shiv Narayanan features Omar Zenhom, co-founder of the $100MBA & Webinar Ninja, on how to bootstrap a SaaS company using content marketing.

While listening to the conversation with Omar, you’ll learn the following:

  • Why most SaaS companies make the mistake of taking on funding too early
  • How to develop your product through the bootstrapping phases through controlled launches
  • How to leverage content marketing to build an audience that can be leveraged to reduce your Customer Acquisition Cost

Show notes:

  • Omar’s $100MBA podcast — a must-listen podcast for any aspiring entrepreneur
  • Omar’s software Webinar Ninja — If you’re using Citrix/GoToWebinar as your platform, you need to check this out. Sign-up for Webinar Ninja 4.0’s launch today to be notified when the software is out.

Here’s my conversation with Omar:


Ep6 – How Uberflip is using webinars to pioneer Content Experience with Hana Abaza, VP Marketing of Uberflip

“Do I want to be drinking a piña colada in a basement that is dingy, damp and wet or do I want to be drinking that piña colada on a beach in Hawaii?”
-Hana Abaza, VP of Marketing at Uberflip

Episode 6 of the How To SaaS podcast features Hana Abaza, VP of Marketing at Uberflip, on pioneering the Content Experience conversation and how their webinar strategy is helping them distribute the message to the market.

What’s fascinating about Uberflip is that they are trying to bridge an education gap within the market about Content. As Hana explains in the episode, 3 key stages of the content marketing process are well known: ideation, creation and distribution. The 4th, often neglected stage, is what Uberflip focuses on: the Content Experience.

While listening to the conversation with Hana, you’ll learn the following:

  • Why the Content Experience is crucial to meeting your marketing objectives
  • How Uberflip uses webinars to educate its prospective customers on the Content Experience
  • Uberflip’s process for procuring webinar speakers, content and promotion partners that generate a consistent flow of leads for the business
  • Uberflip’s follow-up sales process for the hottest from their webinars

Show notes and resources:

We cover lots more as we get into the conversation. Here’s my interview with Hana:

Ep5 – How To Create A Multi-Channel Education Strategy With Tim Paige of LeadPages

“We want people to know that our training really is going to help them regardless of whether they use LeadPages or not.”
– Tim Paige, Conversion Educator at LeadPages

Episode 5 features Tim Paige, Conversion Educator at LeadPages, on how to create a multi-channel education strategy for SaaS companies using webinars, podcast, courses and more.

LeadPages is one of the biggest SaaS companies around — they have $38MM in funding and are growing so fast that their hiring really can’t keep up with it. In fact, their 3-year growth rate currently sits at roughly 2000% and they’ve been ranked #220 on Inc’s 5000 fastest growing companies in 2015.

We at Wild Apricot have many times looked to LeadPages as a model of what we are trying to accomplish with our own education strategy and believe that all SaaS companies should be following a similar model

In the conversation with Tim, you’ll learn the following:

  • Why education is at the core of how LeadPages acquires customers
  • How they’re using Webinars, Podcasts, Courses and their Marketing Library to position themselves as a thought leader when it comes to conversion optimization
  • And what strategy unifies their efforts and moves users through from one education platform to another

We cover lots more as we get into the conversation. Here’s my interview with Tim:

Ep4 – How To Onboard Users In The First 100 Days with Joey Coleman, Founder of Design Symphony

“Every interaction with your company creates a holistic impression with the customer…And most companies are structured in the wrong way to optimize the customer experience.”
-Joey Coleman, Founder of Design Symphony

Episode 4 of the How To SaaS podcast features Joey Coleman, Founder of Design Symphony, on onboarding users in the First 100 Days® of their journey and turning initial experience into an advantage to increase retention and referrals.

Some background on Joey — my interaction with his message began with his concept of the first 100 days and how companies lose up to 50% of their customers within that time period. We at Wild Apricot have taken Joey’s courses and seminars and have really invested into incorporating his ideas into our initial user onboarding.

We believe in it so much that we created a cross-functional onboarding unit in our company that transcends your traditional departments of marketing, sales, customer success, account management and support.

While listening to this episode with Joey, you’ll learn the following:

  • Why the First 100 Days® of a user’s journey are the most critical
  • Why companies need to restructure their departments to change the way the think about and approach user onboarding
  • How the wrong KPIs can drastically impact user experience
  • How to leverage experience as the foundation for increasing retention and referrals

We cover lots more as we get into the conversation. Here’s my interview with Joey.

Ep3 – The Strategy Behind Advocamp With Jim Williams, VP Marketing at Influitive

“You need to focus on how you treat existing customers as much as you do on net new customers.”
-Jim Williams, VP Marketing of Influitive

Episode 3 of the How To SaaS podcast features Jim Williams, VP of Marketing at Influitive, on the strategy behind their Advocamp conference and how it is helping them create the category of Advocate Marketing.

Influitive is one of the darlings of the Toronto SaaS community — they’re growing rapidly, they’ve raised 5 rounds of funding that total to $50MM and they are trying to accomplish something unique, which is the building of an entirely new category called “Advocate Marketing”.

Influitive enables companies to go way beyond referrals to create and empower product champions/evangelists as the core way to grow a business.

We’re going to be speaking with Jim about the creation of Advocamp — their annual conference, which just finished in San Francisco — and it is helping Influitive to build out the category of Advocate Marketing.

In this episode you’ll learn the following:

  • What’s the strategy behind holding your own conference as a SaaS company
  • How much investment is required, in terms of time, money and people, to pull off an event like Advocamp
  • Playing the long game with a conference like Advocamp where the immediate returns are not so obvious when you are trying to build out a new category
  • What kind of buy-in you need from the CEO, the investors and other key teams and stakeholders

We cover lots more in the conversation so jump right in. Here’s my interview with Jim Williams, VP of Marketing at Influitive.

Ep2 – How To Write Books With Donald Cowper, Best-selling Author and Head of Content at ClearFit

“Books spread by word-of-mouth. People share books.”
-Donald Cowper, Head of Content at ClearFit

Episode 2 of the How To SaaS podcast features Donald Cowper (Head of Content at ClearFit) and we discuss why software companies should publish books as a strategy to become the thought leader in the market they are trying to capture.

Donald has already done this twice with some amazing results. The first with Breaking the Time Barrier at Freshbooks which he co-authored with Mike McDerment the CEO and has generated hundreds of thousands of downloads and leads for their software. He’s now at ClearFit as the Head of Content where he’s written the book What To Why with CEO Jamie Schneiderman.

In this episode you’ll learn about answers to the following questions:

  • Why publish books? What’s the strategy?
  • How does the content support the strategy?
  • How do you market and promote a book to achieve your objectives?
  • How to make the content shareable to get it into the hands of as many people as possible.

We cover lots more as we get into the conversation. Here’s my interview with Donald:

Ep1 – How To Exhibit at Conferences with Ryan Anderson, CEO of Filevine

“Good follow-up after the conference is actually preceded by a good relationship at the conference.”
-Ryan Anderson, CEO of Filevine

On Episode 1 of the How To SaaS podcast, we speak with Ryan Anderson on how to strategically exhibit at conferences to create partnerships and generate leads.

Ryan is the CEO of Filevine — a case management software for law practices. Ryan launched Filevine just over a year and a half ago and they’ve been growing rapidly ever since — roughly 30% month over month and at about 500,000 in annual recurring revenue.

One of the ways Ryan and Filevine have been able to penetrate the market of law firms is by executing really well on conferences where they have exhibited. Exhibiting at major conferences is something many software companies try and fail with so I wanted to bring on Ryan to discuss how they have found magic in conferences when so many others have not been able to.

In this episode, you’ll learn the following:

  • How to prepare for a conference to ensure your highest odds of success
  • How to set up your booth during the conference to attract foot traffic, leads and on-the-spot demos
  • How to form partnerships with other vendors at conferences
  • And how to follow-up post conference to close deals

We cover lots more as we get into the conversation. Here’s my interview with Ryan:

Ep0 – Intro To How To SaaS With Shiv Narayanan, Founder Of How To SaaS And CMO Of Wild Apricot

“Our end mission at How To SaaS is to help grow your cloud software company from $1-3MM to the $10MM annual recurring revenue mark.”
-Shiv Narayanan, Founder of How To SaaS

Have you ever wondered about what other SaaS companies are doing to grow their business? What channels are they experimenting with? Where are they finding traction?

Welcome to How To SaaS — the go-to podcast for growing your cloud software company. I’m your host and growth strategist, Shiv Narayanan. I’m also the CMO of Wild Apricot — the #1 membership software for small associations and nonprofits.

Each week will bring you interviews with founders, CEOs and growth leaders who have successfully implemented a growth strategy to help you take your cloud software company to the next level.

In this episode I go over the following:

  • My BIG WHY for founding How To SaaS
  • The community I’m aiming to create with How To SaaS
  • The big vision for where How To SaaS is headed
  • And how we will be creating enormous value for you and your cloud software company

Have a listen: