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WTF are PLG CRMs, expanding your BottomLyne, Content 101, 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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📜 Thesis recess
Starting off today’s newsletter with a new section… thesis recess.
There is a *sexy* new product category in town. One that we’re mistakenly tagged in all the time 🙈
Lo and behold… the PLG CRM!
The condition: PLG companies struggle with low conversion rates and less than optimal sales ✅
The prevailing diagnosis:
The traditional CRMs are to blame (read Salesforce, Hubspot, Pipedrive)
They just don’t work for PLG!
Our verdict: Umm…. the traditional CRMs seem to be working fine for Stripe, Canva, Atlassian… Figma, Zoom… Calendly, Asana… and most of the public PLG universe.
If Salesforce works for every >100M ARR company out there… then with PLG CRMs, you’re probably solving for the symptom and not the disease 🦠
The litmus test: Just ask founders - how many of them would PERSONALLY underwrite/guarantee a (2x) increase in sales… If you gave them a PLG CRM? 🤷🏻♂️
So why are investors so excited?
A large incumbent category (CRM)
An undeniable trend (PLG)
Pattern matching. Boom!
It hits all the sweet spots VCs drool for 🤤 I know I would’ve back in my VC days 😅
Stay tuned… a deep dive into PLG CRMs coming soon 😉
Into the Twitterverse 🐦🌌
How Segment expanded their BottomLyne 😉
Step 1: Read an inspiring biography about Elon ✅
Step 2: Get inspired by first principles engineering ✅
Step 3: Increase gross margins 😌
Kidding! Of course, it’s a lot harder than that. Instrumentation to measure server costs, autoscaling (up and down), redirecting data flow to manage AZ bandwidth charges from your friendly neighborhood AWS, renegotiating your AWS contract, and most importantly… hiring a stellar CFO like Sandy Smith to get it all done 💯
Content 101… start small 👩🏻🏫
As young substackers ourselves, we couldn’t agree more with Harry’s tweet.
The early days of content creation are about starting small, writing for a niche audience (for us… that’s PLG GTM practitioners), engaging with your most engaged subscribers, figuring out what they want, and giving them more!
Web3 🤝 Web2
The Times They Are A-Changin' 🪕
All roads lead to ch(rome) 🌎
If you're a programmer who wants to work on something hard and important, Paul Graham strongly recommends Mighty.
🔎 The PLG hunt
Cron - It’s about time!
“We want to build the time layer of the internet,” says Cron co-founder Raphael Schaad.
Cron is Apple calendar on steroids. With options to check calendar availabilites (and share them) within the app, convenient quick views of your upcoming meetings that open straight from the menu bar, and a ton of useful keyboard shortcuts, Cron is one of the smoothest calendar experiences you can get for yourself right now.
And the final product isn’t even ready yet. Cron is still in semi-stealth mode.
Right now, Cron is available to some users in early access and the app only supports Google accounts. But other providers are coming to the app soon.Cron is nominated as productivity app of the year 🎊 It's a long shot but every vote counts! Check it out: producthunt.com/golden-kitty-a… 🧡 The order is randomized so you may have to scroll to find Cron.
We're excited for where Cron can take the future of calendars 🤩
Which hot and upcoming PLG company are you most excited about? 👇🏻
Growth Stories 🚀
‘API Mixer’ → Snapier → Zapier!
Zapier threw the “How to be a unicorn” manual out of the window and charted their own course to get there. With <$1.4M raised in total funding, an obsession with great customer service, a Fibonacci pricing model (in the early days) and a smattering of mid-western values that the founders bring to the table, Zapier’s rise to the integrations throne and a $5B valuation has been unique. 👑
Read more in our detailed breakdown:
Fundraising, Venture Capital and Exits 🤑
Welcome to the Unicorn club, Hasura! 🦄
With the latest round of funding - $100M in Series C - Hasura will now double down on accelerating growth and solving for emerging use cases.
Alloy Automation, the OS for e-commerce co-ordination, raises $20M in Series A funding led by a16z 🚀
While the explosion in e-commerce software has been great for brands and their tooling, it also means that there is a mess of data and apps that don't integrate.
Alloy Automation creates order in this chaos.
Launches, events, and releases
Meet Trello dashcards! 🃁
Coda: Level up!
A rebuilt editor, an open packs platform, a new market place and more are part of Coda 3.0
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