I once had a three-week work experience in charge of a marketing team that developed and managed SaaS products. That was my rare experience working telemarketing list in a domestic entrepreneurial team. In a very short period of time, on the one hand, I realized the high efficiency of the domestic entrepreneurial SaaS platform in terms of R&D speed, resource mobilization, and team collaboration, and I also felt the fierce competition in the local market. , management and operational instability.
Recently, the popularity of the hot word "Product-Led Growth (PLG)" in the B2B SaaS field has made me reconsider. What does the change in entrepreneurial methodology from Silicon Valley mean to domestic ToB marketers? Can these powerful ideas be implemented in China?
1. The origin of PLG and the changing role of marketing
PLG sounds like a new concept, but it has been around for a long time.
In the software era, enterprise management ERP, as the first-generation productivity tool, has high price, long sales cycle, and high deployment threshold. It usually requires the help of external management consultants to sort out the high-level strategic vision for the company's senior management to complete the order, and the follow-up needs to involve internal and external The multi-department can complete the deployment and landing.
The difference is that there are also telemarketing list first-generation office productivity tools such as Office software. There are many advanced functions and related teaching materials, but some basic functions may be mastered by first-time users.
In this era, sales have a very large voice in enterprises, relationship-based sales are the mainstream, and marketing usually focuses on participating in various exhibitions, activities, and holding seminars, summits, and customer exchanges.
Entering the SaaS era, SaaS productivity tools emerge. Office products and ERP are fully launched online, and there are still many advanced and complex functions that require technical support to better sell to customers. Adobe's Marketo, Salesforce's Pardot, and Microsoft's Dynamics365, which are familiar to foreign marketers, are all similar. However, when users do not have any offline tutoring, there are already many functions that can be mastered by self-study.
At this stage, sales still have the largest voice in the business system, but sales staff need to have more product and technical skills instead of relying entirely on pre-sales engineers. Marketing at this stage has been fully digitalized. Branding, customer acquisition, conversion, and growth are all online. With the support of data, marketing has a certain right to speak.
In the PLG era , SaaS basic tools fully meet the market demand, and users' habit of using tool products is gradually cultivated. In the past decade, SaaS tools have developed in a more segmented and diverse direction. SaaS products with more user-friendly interface and lighter weight exploded rapidly, gradually showing some commonalities: self-explanatory, you will know how to use it as soon as you use it.
For example, tools like Slack and Zoom, or tools like questionnaires and mic forms that marketers often use. In this era, the importance of sales has further declined, and users can directly try and convert through brand and website promotion.