When should you move from Product-Led Growth to Sales-Led Growth? About 10 years ago, enterprise SaaS transitioned from top down to a bottom’s up product-led growth go-to-market motion. Beyond aligning well to the movement of buying powers from IT to departments, this new strategy encouraged startups to truly focus on their product. Better enterprise products were created and users experienced higher productivity, efficiency, and delight from their work tools. Lately, shareholders are demanding predictable growth and profitability. Large enterprise customers deliver just that, but they require a sales team and an enterprise product strategy to win in this segment. In this talk, Chekr CPO Denise Hemke meets with Airtable Head of Product Ilan Frank, who discusses the right timing to focus on a SLG motion, why it’s important, and some of the tricks to get it right.

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Webinar Notes:

  1. Airtable Product Lead Ilan Frank shares his background and experience in the technology industry.
  2. Ilan discusses the concept of product-led growth (PLG) and sales-led growth (SLG).
  3. PLG is effective when focusing on end-users, being in the discovery phase of product-market fit, and emphasizing sales efficiency.
  4. Reasons to shift to SLG include targeting a larger market, addressing complex product deployments, declining viral coefficient, and selling enterprise SaaS.
  5. Factors like product maturity, customer demand, competitive pressure, IPO readiness, and capital availability indicate transitioning to SLG.
  6. SLG requires company-wide alignment, resources, and budget.
  7. Investments in go-to-market strategies, pre-sales, and post-sales organizations are crucial for SLG.
  8. SLG should focus on specific users, align pricing and packaging with customer growth, and invest in security, compliance, administration, deployment functionality, and scale.
  9. Enterprise customers expect a roadmap and a vision for future development.
  10. Having a product with a repeatable go-to-market motion is important, involving competitive awareness, customer trust-building, and mapping product metrics to company metrics.
  11. Combine PLG and SLG strategies in customer segmentation. PLG should generate warm leads and nurture them for SLG efforts.
  12. Leverage successful teams and champions to showcase product value to senior buyers.
  13. Complementing existing strategies with SLG and having a pipeline of warm leads and user champions is valuable.
  14. Companies should initially focus on SLG to acquire beta customers and gather feedback while working on product-market fit.
  15. A handful of friendly customers during this phase can be beneficial.
  16. Customer advisory boards (CABs) play a significant role in gathering feedback and prioritizing features.
  17. Inviting high-level individuals with a global perspective to CABs helps identify important features.
  18. Building software with customers rather than for customers helps avoid binding commitments in contracts for specific features.
  19. Striking a balance between enterprise and SMB customers by organizing product teams into different pillars or focus areas is necessary.
  20. Enterprise-focused teams collaborate with customers, while other teams focus on user research and intuitive feature development.
About the speaker
Ilan Frank Airtable, VP Product Member

Ilan is the Head of Product at Airtable. In this role, Ilan leads product strategy, direction, and delivery for Airtable’s entire product offering. Ilan brings over 20 years of experience building productivity solutions for enterprises where usability and adoption needs meet administration, security, compliance, and scale requirements. Prior to Airtable, Ilan was an early product leader at Slack helping the company scale to win the Enterprise including 80% of the Fortune 100.

About the host
Denise Hemke NEOGOV, CPO

As the Chief Product Officer at NEOGOV, Denise leads the strategy for public sector HR and Public Safety software, driving innovation, customer satisfaction, and excellence. Her experience at Checkr as Chief Product Officer saw her delivering customer-focused products and promoting a fairer future. Denise’s notable career spans over two decades, with significant roles including GM for Analytics at Workday, where she launched new products and grew the business to over $200 million in ARR. Her background includes leadership positions at Platfora, Salesforce, HSBC, and AT&T, showcasing her expertise in enterprise product development and a commitment to technological advancement and customer success.

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