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David Skok

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Top Stories by David Skok

This article looks at the high level goals of a SaaS business and drills down layer by layer to expose the key metrics that will help drive success. Metrics for metric’s sake are not very useful. Instead the goal is to provide a detailed look at what management must focus on to drive a successful SaaS business. For each metric, we will also look at what is actionable. Before going any further, I would like to thank the management team at HubSpot, and Gail Goodman of Constant Contact, who sits on the HubSpot board. A huge part of the material that I write about below comes my experiences working with them. In particular HubSpot’s management team is comprised of a group of very bright individuals that are all very metrics driven, and they have been clear thought leaders in developing the appropriate tools to drive their business. I’d also like to thank John Clancy, w... (more)

Startup Killer: The Cost of Customer Acquisition

In the many thousands of articles advising entrepreneurs on what they have to focus on to build successful startups, much has been written about three key factors: team, product and market, with particular focus on the importance of product/market fit. Failure to get product/market fit right is very likely the number 1 cause of startup failure. However in all these articles, I have not seen any discussion about what I believe is the second biggest cause of startup failure: the cost of acquiring customers turns out to be higher than expected, and exceeds the ability to monetize th... (more)

SaaS Economics – Part 2: Scaling the Business

Discusses the cash flow trough that happens to SaaS, or other subscription/recurring revenue businesses when they decide to scale their business by ramping sales and marketing. Provides an Excel spreadsheet model and PowerPoint slide deck that can be used by readers to model their own data. ... (more)

Battle In The Making

Portals, e-commerce sites, B2B commerce and so on...we're witnessing unprecedented demand for e-business solutions of every stripe as companies rush to put their businesses on the Web. With Y2K now out of the way, this has become the top IT priority. In the past many of these solutions have been built on top of IRM (Internet Relationship Management) products such as Vignette and BroadVision whose primary specialization has been content management and personalization. For early Web sites, mostly serving up static content, this was sufficient. But once the basic site is up and run... (more)

The Application Server Market

The application server category is one of the more confusing markets to understand. In addition, the market changed rapidly during 1998, with a number of companies being acquired. This article aims to clarify the situation. Software: A History of Consolidating Services on New Platforms Looking back at the major shifts that have taken place in the software industry, a trend emerges that is a helpful indicator of what is likely to happen in the evolution of the application server market. As new platforms emerge, there are generally a number of players providing point products that ... (more)