Today we’re celebrating hitting a major milestone in the Pocus Product-Led Sales Community.
Last month we crossed 1000 members in our invite-only PLS community, where go-to-market (GTM) leaders gather to discuss best practices, frameworks, and advice on building out their Product-Led Sales motion.
We’re so grateful for this community and how it’s grown in the last 9 months. Thank you to every single member, whether you quietly listen during AMAs, ask questions, offer advice, build out best practices, take the time to join a meetup or all of the above.
The Product-Led Sales community by the numbers:
- Over 1000 community members in 9 months
- Over 17K messages sent
- 15 AMAs with GTM leaders and counting
- Monthly live workshops, webinars, and small group meetups
Taking a look back
In early 2021, I spoke with hundreds of go-to-market leaders at product-led companies. There was a key theme in each conversation: people are hungry for best practices, frameworks, and guidance for Product-Led Sales.
So, as somewhat of an experiment, I started a Slack channel in July 2021 to bring together the smartest minds in go-to-market and start to codify best practices. I invited 20 people - a mix of founders, sales, growth, and marketing leaders to talk about this *new* thing called Product-Led Sales.
I knew that building the Product-Led Sales category had to be a community-driven effort. I feel forever grateful that so many forward-thinking GTM leaders that were already executing on PLS (before it had a name) were early members of the community. It made my job easy - I got to learn from some of the smartest and most creative people in PLS and distill their conversations/advice to build out frameworks and best practices.
About a week after starting the Slack group, we had our first get-together on Zoom. I brought in my seed investor, Meka Asonye, who previously ran a sales team at Stripe. We had a casual conversation where folks from the Slack group asked Meka questions about everything from org structure to compensation.
We received positive feedback from this discussion, so we decided to bring in more speakers. I asked other Pocus investors and GTM leaders at PLG companies to join us for what we called “Product-Led Sales AMAs”.
From there, members of the Slack group invited their friends, peers, and bosses. The Slack group continued to expand to today where we’ve now grown organically to over 1000 members.
Education + Connection = 🔑
Rather than focus our efforts on dictating frameworks and playbooks for PLS, we highlighted the teams and companies who were out in the trenches building. Hearing those first-hand stories became a great learning tool for the community.
There’s something really powerful about bringing together like-minded people that are solving similar problems at different companies. Especially with PLG and PLS where cookie-cutter playbooks don’t exist, it’s helpful to hear an outside POV and figure out how to adapt their learnings to your own problems.
We launched the Product-Led Sales playbook volume 1 earlier this year to highlight those stories so everyone has the opportunity to learn from experts in the community. We’re excited to get started on volume 2 later this year as more companies begin adopting PLS and new perspectives emerge.
If you’re in sales at a PLG company, you can ping your peers or boss if you have a question. But, if you’re in sales at an early-stage PLG company that is still “figuring it out”, it’s not every day that you get access to someone who did this three years earlier at a Dropbox or Slack.
I spoke to the team at Chargebee about my experience building community here, check it out to learn more about the early decisions we made.
The majority of Pocus’ beta customers started as active community members. The community has been invaluable to the Pocus team as we use the conversations to inform our product roadmap as we build out Pocus’ Product-Led Sales platform. The community's passion for Product-Led Sales helps us continue to validate new product features and get feedback quickly.
For example, below are some insights from community discussions that helped define our product roadmap:
- Segmenting PQLs: We learned from community thought leaders pretty early on that a PQL score always evolves into multiple scores segmented based on PLS goals, customer segments, or personas. This key insight helped us refine our approach to scoring, focusing more on ease of use and flexibility, making it easier to build multiple scores on any object (users, accounts, workspaces, teams, etc.)
- No-Code Experimentation: Along those same lines, we learned that every sales team in PLG has a very different PLS motion - no one size fits all solution could work. So, we made the product very flexible and customizable so each PLG company can build workflows, dashboards, and PQL scoring models that work for their business.
- Use cases beyond sales: What started as a community focused on sales (it’s in the name Product-Led Sales) we quickly realized that PLS is a team sport and that marketing, customer success, and growth teams also needed new playbooks and tools for PLS.
1000 and beyond
I could have never imagined that a 20 person Slack channel would organically grow into a 1000 person community.
I am so excited for this next chapter of Pocus and the Product-Led Sales community. As more teams adopt PLS and build out the motion from zero to one, trusted resources who can share their best practices and frameworks will be more important than ever.
Our goals for this next chapter are to…
- Maintain the quality of conversations within the community - no jerks and never spammy.
- Highlight the voices of experts and trusted advisors.
- Produce more educational content about foundational PLS topics.
I’ll end by reiterating how much I love this community and my gratitude for everyone who has contributed to our growth. Here’s to the next 1000 connections we make and everything we’re going to achieve together in 2022 and beyond.