Sat.Mar 18, 2023 - Fri.Mar 24, 2023

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It’s Now Year 2 of the Venture Downturn

SaaStr

Here's the thing about venture right now Seed stage remains vibrant, similar to any of past 5-6 years Series A and later has gotten over 2021, and is back in market … but … Has moved back to Default No Pacing is far slower because of it — Jason Be Kind Lemkin  (@jasonlk) March 19, 2023 So folks in venture are back to business. 2022 was a year of dealing with the fallout of fallen unicorns, terrible deals, and slashed valuations.

Startup 316
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What Is a Good Conversion Rate? The Answer Might Surprise You

The Daily Egg

What is a good conversion rate for your online business? And how do your company’s conversion rates stack up against the competition? The post What Is a Good Conversion Rate? The Answer Might Surprise You appeared first on The Daily Egg.

Business 312
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The Hardest Round to Raise in 2023

Tom Tunguz

The hardest round to raise so far in 2023 is the Series B. Although, all the early & mid-stage rounds have fallen to levels not seen for 5-10 years. Q1 volumes by year show broad declines across early-stage venture capital. Seeds peaked at 1500 in Q1 of 2020 falling to 155 in Q1 of 2023. Seeds fell 64%; As 68%; Bs 86% & Cs 80% of last year’s round counts.

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Clouded Judgement 3.24.23

Clouded Judgement

Every week I’ll provide updates on the latest trends in cloud software companies. Follow along to stay up to date! Fed Update This week the Fed hiked rates 25bps. The current fed funds target is 4.75-5%. While the expectation was for a 25bps hike, there was some doubt given the banking crisis. I read a couple articles that stated the effects of a tighter credit market given the banking crisis would have a similar effect in the economy as a 50-150bps hike in rates.

Cloud 130
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Merchant Insider Report: Payment Insights for Software Leaders

From emerging payment technologies to the importance of intuitive software design, the world of embedded payments is rapidly evolving. How do you stay ahead while serving up what merchants really want in your software offerings? The Merchant Insider report is here to help, offering unique insights into the merchant perspective. It analyzes responses from over 500 merchants in the U.S. and spans key industries, so you can understand the challenges, preferences, and expectations that are shaping s

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8 Things That Are Just Harder in SaaS Now

SaaStr

Dear SaaStr: What’s Changed in SaaS Today? What’s Harder Now? My list: You have to go twice as far on each dollar of venture capital as in 2021. With public market valuations down 70%+ from their peaks, for startups, that means going twice as far on each dollar. It’s 3x-5x harder to raise a Series A, and 4x-10x harder to raise a Series B, C or D, than it was at the peak.

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How to Build Your Startup like Google & Stripe

Tom Tunguz

In late 2021, Office Hours welcomed Claire Hughes-Johnson, former Stripe COO & VP at Google. During that session, she alluded to a book sharing her expertise in building exceptional teams at two of the most successful startups. That book, Scaling People : Tactics for Management & Company Building. is a book a management team could take to an offsite to develop or re-imagine the entire operating system of a business.

Startup 200
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Microsoft customers locked out of Azure and M365 services due to geolocation error

IT World

Some Microsoft customers were unable to access the company’s Azure and Microsoft 365 services on Thursday due to an issue with Microsoft’s geolocation services. Just after 12 p.m. GMT, the Microsoft 365 Status Twitter account posted a tweet alerting customers to the fact that it was “investigating an issue where users with specific conditional access policies applied may be unable to access any Microsoft 365 service,” adding that Microsoft was attempting to reverse a recent change in order to m

Azure 139
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Dear SaaStr: How Do You Become Successful at Enterprise Sales?

SaaStr

Dear SaaStr: How Do You Become Successful at Enterprise Sales? If you haven’t done enterprise sales before, the biggest thing to understand: you can do it. But, you’re going to have to hustle. Really, really hustle. Many founders want the customers and leads and users to come to them. They want to focus on the product, then on the funnel, A/B testing, optimization, SEO, SEM, etc. etc.

Scale 250
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To Niche or Not To Niche: Guidance from Creators on Picking A Lane

Buffer Resources

What do creators like Mr. Beast and Ali Abdaal have in common? Not much, actually, other than the ‘Creator’ label and being YouTubers. They serve distinctly different audiences and create very different types of content. However, no matter how you look at it, they’re both pretty successful in their own rights. For content creators , one of the biggest debates is whether or not to "niche down" and focus on a specific topic or audience.

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The Top 5 Ways to Monetize Your Subscriber Base

Grow your revenue with iolo’s comprehensive guide designed for senior business leaders. Discover effective methods to deliver premium features and monetize your subscriber base for maximum profitability. Gain practical insights and learn new approaches to drive sustainable growth in your business. Download your copy and start expanding your business today!

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Which Increases Productivity More : The Advent of Personal Computer or a Large-Language Model?

Tom Tunguz

“Our analysis indicates that approximately 19% of jobs have at least 50% of their tasks exposed to GPTs when considering both current model capabilities and anticipated GPT-powered software.” That’s the conclusion from OpenAI’s recent paper “ GPTs are GPTs: An Early Look at the Labor Market Impact Potential of Large Language Models.

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“Adventure is out there!”: Opportunities in AI x Travel

Andreessen Horowitz

Travel is a trillion-dollar industry stuck in the past. The last major breakthrough came in the 1990s, with the emergence of online Travel is a trillion-dollar industry stuck in the past. The last major breakthrough came in the 1990s, with … The post “Adventure is out there!”: Opportunities in AI x Travel appeared first on Andreessen Horowitz.

Travel 130
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Dear SaaStr: Why Don’t More VCs Replace Founders That Don’t Deliver?

SaaStr

Dear SaaStr: Why Don’t More VCs Replace Founders That Don’t Deliver? Yes, it did seem like in the old days, VCs replaced founder CEOs pretty often. It happened at Apple, Google, Cisco, and more. But it’s rare these days. In fact, ~90% of SaaS companies that IPO still have their founder as CEO! And when founders do step down as CEO these days, most often I see it as voluntary, when the company really hits scale and the founders know they’ve personally hit a wall they ca

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Release Notes | March 2023: Webhook Log, ACH, Updated User Experiences, and More!

FastSpring

Release Notes is our monthly highlight of our great features coming out on the FastSpring platform so you’ll be able to pick up and go with the latest features for your store. New Welcome Dashboard and Onboarding Experience For Free Trials In an effort to improve the onboarding experience of new sellers and to deliver more valuable information to our existing sellers, we’ve launched a new version of our welcome dashboard.

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Generative AI Deep Dive: Advancing from Proof of Concept to Production

Speaker: Maher Hanafi, VP of Engineering at Betterworks & Tony Karrer, CTO at Aggregage

Executive leaders and board members are pushing their teams to adopt Generative AI to gain a competitive edge, save money, and otherwise take advantage of the promise of this new era of artificial intelligence. There's no question that it is challenging to figure out where to focus and how to advance when it’s a new field that is evolving everyday. 💡 This new webinar featuring Maher Hanafi, VP of Engineering at Betterworks, will explore a practical framework to transform Generative AI pr

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How I Use AI Writing Tools as a Content Writer

Buffer Resources

A slate of writing tools powered by artificial intelligence (AI) have recently made headlines as a new and more effective way to produce content. Most tech companies have even been implementing AI into their own tools as well, like we did earlier this year when we launched our AI assistant. I’ve written about my conflicted feelings about these very AI writing tools , but I’ve been making an effort to push past my hesitation and add AI into the articles I write for the Buffer blog.

AI 123
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Investing in Character.AI

Andreessen Horowitz

The first time I tried Character.AI , it completely hijacked my husband’s birthday dinner. What had started as a party of 12 friends conversing quietly around the table quickly turned into picking Elon Musk’s brain on Mars, getting the Queen’s … The post Investing in Character.AI appeared first on Andreessen Horowitz.

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5 Interesting Learnings from UiPath at $1.2 Billion in ARR

SaaStr

So few Cloud software companies have had a more interesting history than UiPath. It took them a full 10 years to get to $1m in ARR (!). And then after that, explosion. Robotic Process Automation took off, and they rocketed toward $1 Billion in ARR. Growth then slower after a take-off like we’ve almost never seen before. So now it’s a new world, where profitable growth is what’s valued.

Scale 239
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OpenAI's ChatGPT gets support for a dozen application plug-ins

IT World

OpenAI, the Microsoft-backed company that developed ChatGPT, on Thursday announced support for plug-ins designed to allow companies to more easily embed chatbot functionality into their products. The first plug-ins have been already been created by Expedia , FiscalNote , Instacart , KAYAK , Klarna , Milo , OpenTable , Shopify , Slack , Speak , Wolfram , and Zapier , OpenAI said.

ChatGPT 119
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Leading the Development of Profitable and Sustainable Products

Speaker: Jason Tanner

While growth of software-enabled solutions generates momentum, growth alone is not enough to ensure sustainability. The probability of success dramatically improves with early planning for profitability. A sustainable business model contains a system of interrelated choices made not once but over time. Join this webinar for an iterative approach to ensuring solution, economic and relationship sustainability.

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Even With 250K+ Social Media Followers, I Still Rely on "Snail Mail" for My Business

Buffer Resources

The value of sending snail mail is something that was ingrained in me from a very young age. After birthdays or Christmas, my parents would expect me to send thank-you cards to friends and relatives who gave me presents. When I started working, I stuck with it: I sent cards after job interviews and to colleagues who had especially impacted my career, and I realized it was a quick way to stand out in a world where most people don’t send snail mail.

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SPEEDRUN Your Gaming Startup

Andreessen Horowitz

Starting a gaming company is like playing one of the most difficult video games out there. It’s an expensive and time-consuming grind with the vast majority of games never making it to launch. But what if there was a hack … The post SPEEDRUN Your Gaming Startup appeared first on Andreessen Horowitz.

Startup 127
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Dear SaaStr: I’m an Early Employee and Have a Chance to Sell Some of My Startup Shares. Should I?

SaaStr

Dear SaaStr: I’m an Early Employee and Have a Chance to Sell Some of My Startup Shares. Should I? Goodness. Congratulations on the change for some liquidity. It’s both exciting — and confusing. Marc Benioff sold a huge amount of his Salesforce stock before its run from $2b to $100b+ in market cap. Today, he only owns a few percent of Salesforce.

Startup 219
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Adobe enters the age of generative AI with creative and enterprise apps

IT World

Reality? What reality? Soon, apparently, everything from brand assets to corporate videos to illustrations will be created differently using Adobe’s creative and enterprise apps and its generative AI tool Firefly. You’ll literally be able to speak to paint (or make video). If you can say it, you can draw it At Adobe Summit, the company also announced Adobe Express for Enterprise , a new tool to create, share, and collaborate on high-quality brand content such as multimedia assets, social posts

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Navigating the Future: Generative AI, Application Analytics, and Data

Generative AI is upending the way product developers & end-users alike are interacting with data. Despite the potential of AI, many are left with questions about the future of product development: How will AI impact my business and contribute to its success? What can product managers and developers expect in the future with the widespread adoption of AI?

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Attitude and Conviction Affect Your Close Rate — Here’s Why

Sales Hacker

Sales is the transfer of conviction and inspiration: The person who is most certain during the interaction will win. Why? Because your prospect is uncertain. Which means your sales conversation will either inspire in them the certainty to say yes — or it will reinforce their uncertainty, and they will say no. As a seller, your success rests in your attitude: your complete conviction that your solution is the best in the world for your customer.

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Investing in CCP Games

Andreessen Horowitz

Years before the first blockchain was created, the sci-fi space MMO EVE Online proved out many of the core principles that define web3 today. This is why we are excited to be partnering with CCP on a new project set … The post Investing in CCP Games appeared first on Andreessen Horowitz.

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Dear SaaStr: Is it Ethical For a Startup CEO to Accept a Sales Commission for Deals They Close Themselves?

SaaStr

Q: Dear SaaStr: Is it Ethical For a Startup CEO to Accept a Sales Commission for Deals They Close Themselves? It’s a bit odd, because you want the CEO’s incentives to be aligned with the whole company’s, not just her or his individual efforts. An annualized bonus for meeting the stretch plan is a great idea for a CEO. But not a deal-by-deal commission like a sales rep.

Startup 216
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Q&A: Univ. of Phoenix CIO says chatbots could threaten innovation

IT World

The emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) has opened the door to endless opportunities across hundreds of industries, but privacy continues to be huge concern. The use of data to inform AI tools can unintentionally reveal sensitive and personal information. Chatbots built atop large language models (LLMs) such as GPT-4 hold tremendous promise to reduce the amount of time knowedge workers spend summarizing meeting transcripts and online chats, creating presenations and campaigns, performing d

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SaaS: How They’re Turning Payments Into Profit Centers

Discover how top SaaS companies are earning up to $700k + and zero upfront cost with Usio Integrated Payments.

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Motivation vs. Discipline: How Knowing the Difference Skyrockets Customer Engagement

Sixteen Ventures

When you’re working with customers, whatever your role (CSM, Sales, Account Management, Consultant, etc.), you may find yourself acting as a coach. To be an effective coach, you need to strike the right balance between motivation and discipline. Which means we need to explore the differences between motivation and discipline, and how to apply them effectively to engage your human customers.

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The Future of Ecommerce: How a Product Becomes a Purchase

Andreessen Horowitz

General Partner Connie Chan on how leading brands are using AI and other technology to combine the serendipitous discovery of offline shopping with the infinite options of online shopping. Today, most of the Western world revolves around search-based online commerce … The post The Future of Ecommerce: How a Product Becomes a Purchase appeared first on Andreessen Horowitz.

AI Search 119
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Facebook: In-Person Helps For New Hires. And After That.

SaaStr

Almost buried in Facebook’s last announcement of its workforce changes was its data on in-person vs remote work: In-person time helps build relationships and get more done We’re committed to distributed work. That means we’re also committed to continuously refining our model to make this work as effectively as possible. Our early analysis of performance data suggests that engineers who either joined Meta in-person and then transferred to remote or remained in-person performed better on ave