Founders should avoid selling enterprise products to startups and small businesses, as they often don't need them, and instead focus on products like Snowflake for companies with massive amounts of data.
Founders sometimes make the mistake of selling enterprise products to startups because they assume it's the best move, but it's not always the case.
Startups often try to sell enterprise-grade products to small companies, despite the fact that they don't need them, which is a problem that tiny companies don't have.
Snowflake is a product suitable for companies with massive amounts of data, and not for startups or small businesses.
Selling to customers without the problem is worse than selling to slow decision-makers, while startups can be demanding without wanting to pay.
Selling to customers who don't have the problem is worse than selling to customers who have the problem but take a long time to make decisions.
Startups are not necessarily easier customers than enterprise customers as both can have high maintenance and demanding end users, but the difference is that big companies pay more and startups can be demanding without wanting to pay.
Selling to early stage companies does not guarantee customer retention as some categories, such as HR, have high churn rates as companies grow, and it is important to have a product like Stripe that can grow with the companies to avoid falling down.
Stripe's payment service remains valuable for companies of all sizes, while Salesforce is the go-to for scaling sales teams.
As companies grow and their needs change, they may require a completely different product or service, as seen with examples such as Perfect Audience, Heroku, and Triplebyte, but Stripe's payment service remains valuable regardless of company size.
Startups often choose lightweight CRM tools, but when it comes to scaling sales teams, Salesforce is the go-to, highlighting the difference between tools that scale with people versus revenue.
Selling to startups can lead to success in building a big company by creating a path to larger enterprises and training people on how to use cloud software.
Selling to startups can be a powerful strategy for building a big company, as demonstrated by the success of Gusto, a payroll company funded by YC that started with startups and used them as a bridge to the broader SMB market.
Selling to startups creates a path to large enterprises and helps in training a group of people on how to use cloud software, which was a big avenue into the enterprise for AWS.
Selling software startups requires a sales team, even with developer and evangelist support, and learning from successful companies like Gusto, AWS, and Stripe is key.
Bottoms up sales strategies, which involve getting developers and evangelists to help make sales, have become popular, but companies like AWS and Stripe still need to build real enterprise sales teams.
Selling software startups requires a sales team despite having a development team already using and advocating for the product.
To successfully sell to startups, it's important to know which game you're playing and to learn from successful companies like Gusto, AWS, and Stripe.