How to Secure Enterprise Customers with a PLG Motion

Hello and welcome to The GTM Newsletter – read by over 50,000 revenue professionals weekly to scale their companies and careers. GTMnow is the media extension of GTMfund – sharing insight on go-to-market from working with hundreds of portfolio companies backed by over 350+ of the best in the game executive operators who have been there, done that at the world’s fastest growing SaaS companies.

This week’s newsletter is brought to you by Pocus.

The power of PLG (product-led growth) is continuously being recognized and added to go-to-market strategy, or companies are being built from the ground up with a PLG model. 

PLG often means users are able to activate and adopt products and features on their own. The fee is in theory less, and less onboarding or white-glove service is required. 

But what about when you’re ready to scale up? How can you bridge the gap between SMB and large enterprise deals? 

To start, PLG and enterprise sales don’t have to be mutually exclusive. There are varying ways to implement product-led growth tactics, and they’ll look different depending on the persona.  

Writer embodies this notion. 

Writer is an AI writing platform used by top marketing teams at SaaS companies like Spotify, HubSpot, Workato, Dialpad and Accenture. By focusing on product-driven inbound and strategic segmentation, they’ve seen massive growth and customer retention.

Let’s get into it.

How Writer Secures Enterprise Customers with a PLG Motion

4 levers Writer uses to do so👇

Segmentation of the self-serve and sales-assist ICP

Writer is intentional about which prospects are self-serving versus sales-assisted. For their particular tool, all prospects benefit from hands-on knowledge, allowing them to understand Writer’s true value and potential.

That’s why product tours look different depending on the prospect. In all instances, prospects see how the tool works, but meetings with directors and other higher-ups focus on how Writer can solve deeper problems, like fostering better internal communication and customer relationships, increasing customer acquisition, and fuelling operational efficiency. 

Prioritizing inbound leads 

A PLG model can help drive inbound leads. One of the core components of a PLG model is to design the product for the end-user. This allows customers to sign up on their own and see the product’s value quickly, but it doesn’t mean there’s no room for human intervention; PLG can coexist with your enterprise sales strategy. 

For Writer, executive buy-in starts with the PLG motion: making a great product that can serve a large market. By the time they book calls, Writer’s prospects are already familiar with the tool: they’ve spent time on the website, researched competitors, and know their company goals. This allows account executives to go deeper during calls, demonstrating the higher-level impact Writer can have on an organization. As a result, they’ve seen higher rates of activation within executive teams.

Treating product trials as a touchpoint

How many whitepapers have you downloaded only to let them fester in your inbox? Writer’s Co-Founder & CEO, May Habib, thinks of sign-ups (or downloading a product trial) as the new whitepaper for SaaS companies. It’s easy for someone to download a free trial, but it doesn’t guarantee that they’ll become a customer. Of course, there are other benefits to small downloads, like building an email list and gathering data on how people engage with and use the product, but essentially, a signup should be thought of as another touchpoint. 

When it comes to sign-ups, the value isn’t necessarily the number of users, but whether they’re the right users. Some companies leverage private beta phases for a select audience to gain better data and inform their ICP. 

Starting with one team 

Writer has found success in solving deep problems for one team at an organization, which earns them the right to strategically engage with other teams. 

The first step was narrowing their messaging. Looking at the data, they learned that when marketing teams are the first in the organization to adopt the product, it results in 160% NRR. While the core mission of Writer is to enable anyone to turn their thoughts into engaging prose, they first tailored their homepage messaging specifically to marketers. 

“This is a business that grows and expands once we’re in. Landing in marketing gave us a better shot of being able to serve the entire user journey. That’s the beauty of talking to the problem, no matter what team the prospect sits on. Even if we demonstrate social proof for marketers, anyone can see the results a marketing team is getting with Writer, and that’s what they want to sign up for” explains May Habib. 

Today, Writer serves a variety of personas, including marketing, support, L&D, operations, and HR across many industries: tech, healthcare, retail, and finance.

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💜 Sponsor love: Pocus

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👂 More for your eardrums:

Prior to founding AudiencePlus, Anthony Kennada served as the CMO of incredible companies like Hopin and Front. He was the founding CMO of Gainsight where he and his team are credited with creating the Customer Success category – a novel business imperative, profession and software category that helps subscription companies grow sustainably by becoming customer obsessed. By focusing on human first community building, content marketing, live events and creative activations, they developed a new playbook for B2B marketing that built the Gainsight brand and fuelled the company’s growth from $0 to $100M+ ARR, and eventual acquisition by Vista Equity at a $1.1B valuation.

In this episode, you’ll learn about owned media, a distribution-first approach to audience building, and content as the future of media.

Listen wherever you get your podcasts by searching “The GTM Podcast.”

👀 More for your eyeballs:

LinkedIn is expanding its Thought Leader ads into its own version of branded content promotion, by enabling businesses to promote content from any user in the app, not just their own employees. Read more on LinkedIn enabling brands to sponsor any organic post.

Grok? Might sound familiar. You might have heard of it as X’s answer to OpenAI’s ChatGPT, but if you’re like us a deeper dive is helpful. Read about what is Elon Musk’s Grok chatbot and how it works.

🚀 Start-ups to watch: 

Forbes’ America’s Best Startup Employers list was released this month. There are lots of incredible start-ups to watch on this list, and we’re proud to see GTMfund portfolio companies highlighted:

Catalyst | Vanta | Census | Gorgias | Cube | CapIQ | Crossbeam | Capchase | Demostack

🔥 Hottest GTM jobs of the week:

  1. VP of Marketing at OfferFit (Remote – North America)
  2. Account Executive at Pocus (Remote, NYC, SF)
  3. Demand Generation Manager at Statusphere (Remote – US)
  4. Marketing Coordinator at Capchase (Remote – US)
  5. Post-Sales Solutions Engineer at Vanta (Remote – US)

See more top GTM jobs on the GTMfund Job Board.

🗓️ GTM industry events

Go-to-market events you won’t want to miss:

Reach out to Sophie Buonassisi on our team if you’ll be at Spryng, Goldenhour or CMO Summit.

◼️ GTMfund corner

In San Francisco next week we’ll be hosting two events:

  • An intimate event with a partner (co-hosting) on Winning Competitive Markets.
  • A GTMfund dinner – these are private executive dinners across North America and Europe, bringing together 40 of our executive go-to-market operators and founders at each.

That’s it, that’s all. 

PLG and enterprise sales aren’t mutually exclusive and can be blended for a more nuanced, effective approach.

This is the case for most things in life. Everything is more of a spectrum than siloed, and recognizing the potential for synergy rather than separation allows for more effective solutions.

Have a great weekend ahead!

Barker ✌️

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Before helping found GTMfund, Scott spent 4 years at Outreach as Director of Strategic Engagement. He was in charge of aligning key relationships with VCs, BoDs, ecosystem partners and community members to drive revenue and strategic initiatives across Outreach. Scott initially ran revenue/partnerships for Sales Hacker (which was acquired by Outreach in 2018). Prior to Sales Hacker, he led and built outbound Business Development teams at Payfirma and MediaValet. Scott also advises for a number of high growth start-ups and is the host/author of The GTM Podcast and The GTM Newsletter. At GTMfund, Scott leads all fundraising efforts and runs the media arm of the firm. He’s also responsible for assessing investments, team management, LP/community relationships and GTM support for founders.

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