What is on the menu: 15 spectacular bootcamps at SaaS.City12 min read
The first year it was only 1. The second it was 4. The third it was 8. This year we have 15 bootcamps as part of SaaS.City. What has become one of the most beloved parts of SaaStock, this 1-day accelerator for your SaaS, takes place across town on October 14th.
Since year one, we have tried to run more bootcamps, cover more SaaS topics and make each one better and more relevant. This year we are pulling all the stops and offering an unmatched opportunity to learn, solve challenges and grow your SaaS, whichever part of it you are into. Your biggest problem will be picking one out of a menu of 15 bootcamps on offer.
While delving into a different SaaS topic such as growth marketing, internationalization, inbound sales, pricing and building workplaces where people want to work, every bootcamp will work the same way. Each will be split into three, 90-minute workshops, led by different facilitators. The setting will be classroom style, with attendees working in groups to learn and solve their business challenges collaboratively. Each bootcamp has a maximum capacity of 35 people. Taking over beautiful Dublin, the bootcamps are situated across town in some of the most important addresses when it comes to startups, tech, and SaaS.
We are highlighting a few of the bootcamps below to get a sense of what to expect. Be sure to grab a ticket and make your pick as soon as you can as places are filling fast.
Building Workspaces Where People Want to Work
Elevator pitch: Come willing and ready to respond to multi-generational demands to attract and retain talent, foster innovation, improve productivity, and build or maintain a competitive advantage.
- Sandra Healy, Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Dublin City University
- Ahmed Mansour, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Assistant at Dublin City University
- Ruben Hamilius, MD, BusinessgamesIreland
Talent has overtaken capital as a key economic differentiator. Managing employee diversity and building workplaces that attract and retain the best talent is one of the top three agenda items for the global CEO. It’s a balancing act of enticing and keeping the best people, all whilst sustaining good brand reputation, and mitigating risk without letting too much stress get in the way.
Achieving this balance has never been as difficult as now. Societal expectations and employee demands have drastically changed. For the first time, we now have five generations in the workforce. While this brings great diversity and an opportunity to build better products, it also brings challenges. As employers, how do we make sure we understand each generation and cater to them? One size fits all approach will not work when creating a highly productive and inclusive working environment.
We must be willing and ready to respond to these new demands to attract and retain talent, foster innovation, improve productivity, and build or maintain a competitive advantage.
Elevator pitch: Due to popular demand, we will run two CEO bootcamps. Building a successful SaaS business needs more than a clear market, world-class solution, customer success, and focus. We’ll deep dive into the key skills you need to become a market leader – from building a great team, maintaining a productive and engaged workforce, to staying mentally strong on your SaaS journey.
- John Thompson, Director, Briggs Associates Ltd
- Adam Hale, Chairman, Eloomi
- Jesper Frederiksen, Vice President and General Manager, EMEA at Okta, Inc
Building teams from a CEO’s perspective
Success in building a SaaS business needs more than a clear market, world-class solution, customer success, and focus. Success also needs a great team, expanding from the founders and a tiny group through to hundreds in many countries, No business will become a market leader without a motivated and productive team. This isn’t easy to achieve when the business is more than doubling every year.
What are some approaches and real-life experiences that can achieve this? Adam Hale shares his experiences as Fairsail CEO growing from 13 to 200 people and £5m value to £115m cash exit in 4 years. Before Fairsail he helped to build leadership teams for 200 software companies globally. This session will discuss practical approaches for hiring, interviewing, share options, diversity, communication, recognition, US teams, values and wearing plush crustacean suits.
CEO Wellbeing – Staying Strong on the SaaS Journey
Being a CEO isn’t always plain sailing, and leading a SaaS business brings its own challenges. You’re dealing with constant fundraising, sky-high investor expectations, 24x7x365 operations, a constantly changing competitive dynamic and navigating the war for talent.
Despite the many Entrepreneurial highs, many CEO’s experience periods of chronic stress, poor sleep, compromised physical and mental health, and a lack of balance in their lives. This impacts on performance at work and on personal happiness. In this workshop led by John Thompson, an 18 year serial SaaS Entrepreneur and CEO, we look at how building resilience as a CEO is core to running your businesses. Bring your most authentic self and be prepared to share and learn.
Getting Ready to Scale Your SaaS
Elevator pitch: Delve into the key elements of a SaaS operating model, how to prioritize decisions on where to invest in your business, the best practices in venture finance and mentorship, and how to plan for transitions in your go-to-market approach.
- Kieron Sambrook-Smith, Chief Commercial Officer, Platform.sh
- Valerie Gombart, Founder & CEO, Hi Inov
- Harrison Rose, Co-founder & Chief Commercial Officer, Paddle
Whether you’re seeking seed funding, or have gained traction and are figuring out the next move in the market, there’s a lot of thinking ahead to do. Join Platform.sh, Paddle, and Hi Innov for an interactive workshop where you’ll build a “swipe file” of strategies, lessons learned, and opportunities to grow, and transition your SaaS business. Through a series of three sessions, we will discuss the key elements of a SaaS operating model, how to prioritize decisions on where to invest in your business, the best practices in venture finance and mentorship, and how to plan for transitions in your go-to-market approach.
Planning your Operational Models for Scale
Whether your SaaS business is in it’s beginning stages, you’re shifting to a SaaS model, or you’re moving upmarket, mapping out your operating model is essential to grow and scale. In this session with Platform.sh you will:
- Walk through the different elements that make up a successful SaaS operating model, including unit costs, infrastructure, sales & marketing, and partner management
- Learn strategies of how to set up and test your model so that it can scale with your business
- Hear from peers about how to prioritize decisions on where to invest in your business in order to maximize your time and money.
- We will share case studies from our customers, as well as hear examples from attendees
Best Practices for Working with Investors at Critical Transitions
Working with a great investor isn’t just about funding. Your investors are long-term partners, and an important element of any SaaS business. In this session you will:
- Hear directly from investors about the different types of funding to consider
- Discover how to think about the most effective deal and board structures, especially during business transitions and growth
- Learn how to approach VC’s at different stages of a SaaS company’s lifecycle
- In small groups, create and present a short 30-second pitch to Hi Inov and get real-time feedback
Creating a Coherent Go-to-Market Strategy
The evolution from a young startup to an established scale-up requires changes in your go-to-market approach and team. How do successful SaaS companies scale? In this session with Paddle you will:
- Hear the different ways successful companies use to scale, from expanding internationally to moving upmarket
- Learn how to make the right growth decision for your business
- Discover how to successfully execute on your scaling plan.
Elevator pitch: You’ll design an expansion revenue growth plan to grow year on year, build a blueprint to utilize customer research, and understand how to develop a growth team that’ll give you a competitive edge to win.
- Georgiana Laudi, SaaS Marketing & Growth Advisor, Elevate
- Tara Robertson, Director, Marketing Strategy, Sprout Social
- Meena Sandhu, VP Marketing, Predictable Revenue
The Scrappy Method to Unlock Your Voice of Customer for Growth
SaaS businesses who use customer research and leverage Voice of Customer in their marketing can see upwards of a 466% increase in conversions. Yet this is still one of the most overlooked areas of focus for marketers. In this hands-on workshop, we’ll build a blueprint that will help transform your marketing this year in both a scrappy yet significant way.
In this workshop we’ll:
- Demonstrate the power of VoC, review principles of qualitative research and methods used by conversion and user psychology experts.
- Explore how to uncover the WHY behind customer behavior and analyze ways you can motivate action using this customer data.
- Introduce a shortcut for capturing your VoC, regardless of your company stage, which we’ll run through together in real-time.
- Provide you with the tools and resources to leverage the work you do in this workshop as soon as you’re back in the office.
Driving Growth with Existing Customers
SaaS companies rely on recurring customers, that’s the subscription model. Naturally, we need to focus on driving revenue growth through our existing customer base. However, too often in SaaS, all of the growth focus goes to new customer acquisition (regardless of fit). SaaS companies need to leverage existing customers for revenue growth. A 5% increase in customer retention can have a 75% increase in profitability. A lot of companies are leaving revenue on the table. In this hands-on workshop, together, we will design an expansion revenue growth plan to keep you successfully growing year over year.
In this workshop we’ll:
- Explore the untapped revenue generation opportunities leveraging customer success teams to drive upsells and cross-sells
- Discuss how sales and marketing can support customer success to achieve increased revenue growth through selling to the right fit and marketing to existing customers
- We’ll map out expansion revenue growth rate and retention rate strategies and measurement
Elevator pitch: Venturing into global markets should be met with a laser focus to meet your core objectives. We’ll deep dive into the ‘where’ and ‘how’ of breaking into global markets, including practical tactics on the people, tech, and product you need to break into new regions.
- Carrie Osman, Founder & CEO, Cruxy & Co
- Henrique Aragao, VP and GM of EMEA, G2
- Sydney Sloan, CMO, SalesLoft
- Ollie Sharpe, VP, EMEA Revenue, SalesLoft
Taking SaaS international – where do you place your bets?
This workshop will look into three main objectives when it comes to internationalization – the purpose, the where and the how. Expect to have to answer many fundamental questions such as why are doing this in the first place, where does it makes sense to go from a practical standpoint and how to actually do it without making mistakes.
Product Led Growth
Elevator pitch: Through a combination of practical examples and hands-on exercises, you’ll learn how to define user activation for your product, and use customer feedback and product usage data to drive exponential growth.
- Ferdinand Goetzen, Founder & CEO, 3D Hubs
- Guillaume Cabane, Founder, Growth Ex Machina
The Road to Activation; Wowing your Users
In this workshop, Ferdinand Goetzen, Director of Marketing & Growth at 3D Hubs, will draw from his current work as well as past experiences as Chief Growth Officer at Recruitee and Lead Trainer & Growth Marketer at Growth Tribe, to share the keys to improving user activation in SaaS. Through a combination of practical examples and hands-on exercises, you will learn how to define user activation for your product and will work with Ferdinand to develop actionable experiment ideas to improve user activation for your SaaS product.
The rest of the SaaS.City bootcamps:
Architecting for growth – Build a tailored solution designed for platform deployments based on your go-to-market strategy, and a precise sales framework that’s aligned with the way we buy software today.
Outbound Sales – Walk away with the outbound sales SaaS playbook you need to ensure long-term commercial success.
Getting Ready to Scale Your SaaS – Delve into the key elements of a SaaS operating model, how to prioritize decisions on where to invest in your business, the best practices in venture finance and mentorship, and how to plan for transitions in your go-to-market approach.
Internationalization – Venturing into global markets should be met with a laser focus to meet your core objectives. We’ll deep dive into the ‘where’ and ‘how’ of breaking into global markets, including practical tactics on the people, tech, and product you need to break into new regions.
Moving Up Market – Arm yourself with the pricing, governance and business development models you need to tackle the challenges of going after high-value customers.
Fundraising & Investment – Top investors in SaaS breakdown the key metrics, KPIs and practical tips you step into their office. We’ll tackle funding challenges and examine the realities of alternative ways to fund your SaaS.
Customer Success – Absorb creative solutions to solve real-life business problems to ensure your customers are heard: from reducing CAC, increasing LTV, and increasing conversion rates to prove and ensure longevity in your SaaS business.
Data & Architecture – In order to become a good SaaS company you need to be a good data company. Industry leaders teach you how to access the right data, structure it with the right architecture, and invest in the right applications to ensure your SaaS is not only well protected but that you’re able to build a customer-centric and scalable product.
Inbound sales – Take a deep dive into how inbound sales models that work for your team, customers and market. You’ll also learn the science of sales in its basic elements to analyze productivity, diagnose the root cause of bottlenecks, and create an action plan for growing a recurring revenue SaaS business.
Monetization & pricing – Whether you’re moving from freemium to flat tiered pricing, or usage-based or a mix in between, you’ll create an action plan for easy-to-implement pricing tactics to deliver immediate results to your bottom line.
Now that we have gotten you excited about just one part of the SaaStock experience, be sure to grab a ticket as soon as you can. Avoid any disappointment as some of these workshops are filling up fast.
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