Today, we dive into the video conferencing software world—one of the few products really thriving during a time of isolation. (Toilet paper, you’ve had your time in the limelight.)
We also look at the value of B2B SaaS "influencing." Plus, a bit on bootstrapping.
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So you want to be an influencer?
Influencer marketing isn't just for socialites on Instagram anymore.
Influencer marketing—it conjures up an image of beautiful people on social media, promoting their perfectly concocted smoothies and flawless skin-care routines. The posts can be cheesy, they’re explicitly displayed as ads, yet somehow… they work.
Influencing isn’t all set aside for socialites on social media selling physical products, though. It can also work for the B2B SaaS-ers out there.
(If you’re thinking, “I don’t even have a LinkedIn marketing strategy,” bear with me.)
Because the LinkedIn audience is just different. It’s made up of CEOs, CMOs, CFOs, founders, big name entrepreneurs, and highly educated individuals in upper management. And people in this camp are spending serious time on the platform to educate themselves before making buying decisions.
In that regard, the opinions of influencers on LinkedIn carry substantial weight. Influence, audience, and authority are built upon expertise. “Users follow influencers because they constantly deliver industry insights in the form of detailed posts, articles, and videos that provoke followers’ curiosity and consideration.”
Alright, so you’re bought in. But how do you access that elusive influencer and ideally start working with them?
Sprout Social says it’s about seeking out the best (LinkedIn actually maintains its own influencer list), spending time manually seeking them out, joining LinkedIn groups, and ultimately contacting these folks directly.
Because LinkedIn influencer marketing is still in its infancy, "this presents brands with unique advantages."By working with influencers now, you can command more attention at a lower price. But don't expect it to last long. Like anything that breeds success, you'll see an influx of this type of promotional material and sticking out amongst the crowd will become the ultimate challenge.
Building by bootstrapping
VEED Founders Tim & Sabba bootstrapped to $25,000 in MRR. Here's how.
What we’re loving about Tom’s content is not just that it’s right up our alley topically, but that it’s witty, transparent, quick, and ultimately... honest.
(I know when you hear the term “case study,” it probably feels like we’re looming on selling you something, but rest assured, this one’s all for gains.)
In Tom’s latest piece, he sits down with VEED Founders Tim & Sabba. (VEED is an online video editing software for those who aren’t yet familiar.)
In this piece, Tom decodes how the duo arrived at where they’re at—namely, approaching $1 million ARR—a story of true bootstrappers, undeniably the kinds of founders that are near and dear to our hearts.
This one’s a solid lunch read for your days spent at home (PSA to remember to actually take breaks amid this madness) but it’s not one you have to feel guilty over, because you’re no doubt still learning your stuff. Tom breaks up the story by growth levers—from product iteration and SEO efforts to, what he refers to as, obsessive customer interviews and an honest and open founder relationship.
Tom advises you “take a seat, grab a strong black coffee and strap yourself in for one of the most open and transparent bootstrapped SaaS growth stories of our time…”
All of a sudden, we’re in an age of Zoom everything. But what else is out there?
It’s reached far beyond the professional space. It's virtual cocktail hours, book clubs, movie nights, therapy sessions.
But just because Zoom is a leader in the video conferencing space, doesn’t mean it’s the only one. We’re spying Product Hunt, the platform that highlights the newest in tech, bringing up the same question: What else is out there?
In a recent newsletter, the Product Hunt team looked at a platform called Around, which they say, from a UI perspective, looks different than traditional video conferencing software. It apparently prioritizes AI-based camera framing that finds your face as you move, cropping out the background behind you and muting the noise (which is reminiscent of Krisp, the background-blurring software we touched on last week).
I’d be into this one, because these days my highest work anxieties are over dogs barking and my nephews crying in the background. (I simply adore them, but there's only so much space up in here.) The Around software also offers optional filters to set a “vibe” for the call, so you can play around with that, too.
If video conferencing is the new normal—and for the foreseeable future, it is—I’m keen to check this one out myself.