Today I met with two different entrepreneurs that have bootstrapped multi-million dollar revenue SaaS companies in Buckhead. Neither one raised money and neither one had a sales/lead gen strategy that accelerated their success. How would I characterize their success? They were successful because of brute force hanging around long enough to build a sustainable business. One started his company in 1999 and the other started his in 2000. That’s right, each has been in business well over 10 years. It took them 10 years to be an overnight success.
Neither had a scalable lead generation tactic leading to explosive growth but here are the customer acquisition methods they employ:
- Cold calling (one used ConnectAndSell with a senior rep and the other has four full-time in-house cold callers)
- Pay-per-click ads on Google (both cited declining value from their PPC spend due to rising costs)
- Word-of-mouth referrals from happy customers
That’s it. Each identified the same three things and said direct mail, tradeshows, and other lead gen attempts didn’t have an ROI. Their mix of those three approaches generated a small but steady supply of leads and over the course of 10+ years they built nice companies.
What else? Have you see others be successful by brute force hanging around?