Asynchronous funding rounds - Danke, Loom! The Return of the Power Law, Is PLG the end of sales, and more...
👋 Hey, Ruchin here! Welcome to this week’s edition of the ✨Top of the Lyne✨ newsletter. Each week we publish the hottest news from the beautiful world of product-led growth! (PLG)
The outcome we're shooting for is simple... to get enough folks excited about the product-led world that we so dearly love ❤️
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Into the Twitterverse 🐦🌌
Top of the Lyne and the Return of the Power Law… Part 2 😅
It’s back! The Power Law is back 🙈 We spoke about it here, here, here, and let’s not forget here. I’m obsessed. But can you blame me - spend enough time in VC and you’d obsess over “the” Law too!
But why is it so addictive? Well, it’s TRUE. Here’s a brilliant tweet from Mathilde that shows how the power law drives all outcomes in the world of SaaS.
Just 4% of SaaS companies reach $1M in ARR. Only 0.4% make it to $10m and 0.0X% make it to $50M.
The global ~$200B SaaS market is basically driven by the top 0.00X% of companies who gave it a shot 🤯
@Team Toplyne - the objective is clear. We’ve got to be the 0.00X% of folks who ever did it 😎
Is PLG the end of sales? 🤭
Far from it! In fact, the best PLG companies have some of the best and most elaborate sales teams and processes. Figma, Calendly, Hopin, Shopify, you name it! We wrote about Figma’s sales process below 👇🏻
Check out Brendan’s insightful tweet about how the best sales-led companies are taking a hit of PLG 😅 and the best PLG companies are latching on good ol’ sales 💰
What is PLG?
Just SaaS? Naah…
SaaS + consumer apps like Calm? Naahh… think bigger!
PLG can go as far as selling your latest book. Just ask Andrew Chen. Here’s a free trial on his blog 😉
Does it work? Ask our office… half of them bought the book after our growth manager plugged the free chapter link on our Slack 😅
Loom. Zoom. Room. 🚀
…and Boom! Sending a deck is soooo 2020 🙄 The high stakes game of impressing investors no longer starts on Zoom in 2021, but rather on Loom! Here’s Garry Tan’s take on why… 👇🏻
🔎 The PLG hunt
The Time-traveller’s Debugger: Replay.io
Replay is a tool that helps developers ⏮ play back and ⏺ record websites down to lines of code. The app records the entire state of an application and lets developers inspect state by travelling back and forth in time to understand code interactions better.
Over a decade, Brian Hackett and Jason Laster have built something that even the big boys at Apple and Microsoft have been trying to develop for years.We’re excited to announce an investment in @replayio, which provides developers with a dramatically better debugging experience using familiar browser tools. a16z general partner Peter Levine has more on partnering with the Replay team on this journey 👇 a16z.com/2021/09/15/inv…a16z.comInvesting in Replay | Andreessen Horowitz“The most magical experience,” “a true game-changer” — not exactly the sentiments you expect to unanimously hear from developers, famously selective and opinionated about their tools. But we heard this over and over again when talking with devs about Replay…
They raised $5.7M in seed funding from a16z earlier this year, and are hiring aggressively.
Replay is really best described as “magic.” The tool attempts to make debugging more visual, exploratory, and fun.
Which hot and upcoming PLG company are you most excited about? 👇🏻
Growth Stories 🚀
Overheard here at Toplyne HQ the other day:
“After mmhmm, let’s write Clockwise”
We’re big fans of Clockwise, a browser extension that tucks away uninterrupted hours, sets up focus-time blocks, reschedules conflicts, and intelligently manages your time. In the year that followed their series A, Clockwise’s landed and expanded at companies like Slack, Spotify, Twitter, Etsy, and Pinterest and grew at a blazing pace of over 5% week over week.
Their Sales and Marketing budget at the time? $0
We covered the Clockwise story in detail here this week 👇
Here’s a growth story in just numbers:
Paid subscribers in Dec 2020: ~250,000
Paid subscribers in Feb 2021: 500,000+
We’re talking about Substack, of course. Substack’s growing user base is symptomatic of a larger shift of power from legacy media corporations to the individual creator. From r/wallstreetbets to Joe Rogan and Salman Rushdie, we cover some ground in the latest podcast.
🎙 Tune in!
Fundraising, Venture Capital and Exits 🤑
Opensource is a terrible bus…. erhmm… nevermind 😬
Look out for “HCP” on NASDAQ. Cloud software vendor HashiCorp’s IPO values the company at $14B, becoming one of the highest valued open-source tech companies.
Did someone say easier app development? Sign us up!
Started by two former Shopify employees, Gadget is a set of advanced building blocks designed to simplify app development. They just raised seed funding of $8.5M from Sequoia Capital and Bessemer Venture Partners.
4x YoY growth 🤤
CEO Sid Yadav describes Circle as a “Shopify for creator and brand-led communities.” Over the last year, Circle has grown from $1M to $4M in ARR while almost tripling headcount to ~40.
Video killed the radio star… and now it’s coming for the others
Picsart’s acquisition of DeepCraft reflects the recent growth of video creation on its service.
Launches, events, and releases 🎊
In democracy we trust! 💪🏻
Calendly launched their newest, shiniest feature this week. Meeting Polls allow attendees to vote for their preferred time slots.
Live reaction from Calendly users everywhere:
Nerding out on PLG 🤓📚
Current VP of Sales at Figma, Kyle Parrish spent over five years at the OG of PLG: Dropbox.
In this podcast, Kyle breaks down his entry into the world of Sales, how to create the sales playbook, non-obvious traits to look for in Sales hires, and more.
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