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The 3 core pillars of SaaS businesses

He is helping high growth SaaS CEOs | TK Kader from Unstoppable

Who is TK Kader?

TK worked at Bridgewater Associates. He then founded ToutApp, which he sold to Marketo, and was part of the executive team at Marketo that helped drive its transformation and eventual $4.75bn sale to Adobe. TK now leads the Unstoppable movement to help SaaS Founders build & scale incredible software companies.

The 3 core pillars of SaaS businesses

Cristian: “What’s your best piece of advice for SaaS founders?”

TK: “We talk about this all the time. There are 3 core pillars for SaaS businesses – there’s the product, and founders automatically focus on it. And the other two pillars are market and go-to-market. If you take any average team, if they are in a stellar market, they can have a mediocre team and a mediocre product and mediocre go-to-market, but still, they’ll be widely successful.

So, to founders, what I always say is – make sure you think about the market first, the urgent and important problem you’re solving, the dynamics in that market, the budget in that market as it really determines how hard or easy it’s going to be for you to win. Then comes the product – how do you actually build the product that solves that urgent and important problem in a differentiated way? So that’s the second most important.

But then, if you do those things and don’t do go-to-market properly, you will fail. You can have a stellar market, a stellar product, but no one will ever know about it. We think of it as a Venn diagram – you have to optimize for all three of these things, and you can’t just over-index on one.

Founders tend to over-index on the product. You’ll often see them say <we’re just this one feature away, and then everyone’s going to love our product>, but unfortunately, that’s never the case.

You want to think about go-to-market and market as early as possible.”