How to Achieve 2,500% Revenue Growth: 5 Lessons from Paddle’s Ed Fry
When you think about runaway business models – the kinds MBA students study in class as they dream up the next big winner – it’s tempting to reduce their success to a few simple factors.These companies obviously have an amazing product. They’ve got a great way of telling that product’s story to the world. And they’re really, really good at selling.But those three things are what got Starbucks its first profitable coffee shop in Seattle, not what allowed that shop to morph into an $80 billion business with 30,000 cafes around the world. That kind of growth? It requires thinking at a different scale.As the team at the Saas Commerce Platform Paddle has learned, real growth is about entering new markets – and that takes thoughtful attention to pricing, making inroads into new geographic regions, deciding whether to move upmarket (or downmarket), and offering new standalone products instead of bloated features tacked onto old ones.“The reason why businesses grow is they’re in a great market”It’s this approach to scaling their business that has enabled Paddle to achieve 2475% revenue growth over the last four years. It’s even garnered them an enviable position among Deloitte’s Fast50, a list of the fastest growing software companies in the UK.We sat down with Paddle’s Ed Fry for an in-depth look at what it really takes to scale at such a breakneck pace. As the Head of Growth, Ed’s mission is straightforward if far from simple – taking the company’s already skyrocketing growth and accelerating it.Listen to the full episode above or check out our main takeaways below.This is Season Two of Scale, Intercom’s podcast series on moving from startup to scale-up. If you enjoy the conversation and don’t want to miss the rest of the series, just hit subscribe on iTunes, stream on Spotify, listen on Stitcher, or grab the RSS feed in your player of choice.1. Product, marketing, and sales are table stakes for growthWhen it comes to growth, it’s tempting to boil the recipe down to just a few ingredients. We see wildly successful companies and attribute their success to a combination of their product, the story they tell about it, and their ability to monetize it.Take Slack, for example: the media points to its brilliant product as the reason for its impressive growth. Hubspot? A genius inbound marketing strategy. Salesforce? It’s in the name: a company inspired by the needs of salespeople has to be good at selling itself.In reality, a killer product, a great story, and sales talent are just the bare essentials – the cost of entry into the world of business. To unlock real gangbuster growth, you have to think about expanding your market, not just capturing more of an existing one.Here’s Ed’s perspective on growth:“The reality is fast growing companies have all this stuff – they have marketers doing marketing, they have product people. But that’s not why they grow. The reason why they grow is they’re in a great market. Software businesses are just like any other business, like Starbucks, Pret A Manger, McDonald’s. They grow because they are in more markets. They are in more locations, they’re selling at more price points, they’re selling more products. And for software businesses, it’s exactly the same. “In that process, the whole sales, marketing, products, go-to-market, commercial model is going to change. And, really, growth comes from figuring out that product-market fit, that go-to-market fit within each of those markets.”2. Invest in the five stars for growing your marketMost businesses talk about the idea of a North Star. Sometimes it’s a guiding philosophy that the company’s leaders rally everyone…
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