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Usage as the Moat in AI

As generative AI captivates Startupland, startups will do what they have always done: integrate new technology to build transformative businesses. Incumbents have seized the moment with Microsoft, Adobe, & others integrating generative AI into their products quickest. In response, startups must develop moats to stake out their market. What are...

The Typical Startup Saw a 24% Increase in Sales Cycle in 2023

Sales cycles shifted dramatically in 2023. Slower sales cycles create pipeline shocks & startups are feeling the impacts. The average startup saw a 24% increase in sales cycle from early 2022 to 2023. 60 day sales cycles are now 75 days. But the latency isn’t evenly distributed. Startups selling to enterprises have increased 36%, twice those...

The Hardest Round to Raise in 2023

The hardest round to raise so far in 2023 is the Series B. Although, all the early & mid-stage rounds have fallen to levels not seen for 5-10 years. Q1 volumes by year show broad declines across early-stage venture capital. Seeds peaked at 1500 in Q1 of 2020 falling to 155 in Q1 of 2023. Seeds fell 64%; As 68%; Bs 86% & Cs 80% of last...

Which Increases Productivity More : The Advent of Personal Computer or a Large-Language Model?

“Our analysis indicates that approximately 19% of jobs have at least 50% of their tasks exposed to GPTs when considering both current model capabilities and anticipated GPT-powered software.” That’s the conclusion from OpenAI’s recent paper “GPTs are GPTs: An Early Look at the Labor Market Impact Potential of Large Language Models.” How much might...

How to Build Your Startup like Google & Stripe

In late 2021, Office Hours welcomed Claire Hughes-Johnson, former Stripe COO & VP at Google. During that session, she alluded to a book sharing her expertise in building exceptional teams at two of the most successful startups. That book, Scaling People : Tactics for Management & Company Building. is a book a management team could take to an...

When Will SaaS Budgets Increase Again?

I’m watching public company earnings to identify early trends in the software market to inform startups’ plans for 2023. Earlier, Mongo DB announced earnings. I’m adding Mongo to the list of tracked companies for this series. The economic slowdown which started one year ago has reduced growth rates by 31% across this group from 46% annually to 31%...

Take a Breath

Within the span of a few days, Startupland has experience an extraordinary set of events. The collapse of Silicon Valley Bank & 2 two others, then the intervention of the US Treasury to backstop deposits. During that time, founders & management teams responded with tremendous fortitude under pressure, developing contingency plans to assure...

2023 Go-to-Market Survey - Understanding How Startups Have Shifted in 2023

With all the broad macro economic shifts, startups are pursuing their core markets much differently in 2023 than in 2022. To illuminate those trends, I’ve constructed a brief, 28 question go-to-market survey here.. My goal is to understand how startups have evolved their sales, marketing, customer success, and cash management from the go-go days of...

How ChatGPT Will Restructure Engineering Teams & Create Opportunity for Startups

As machine learning becomes core to every product, engineering teams will restructure. In the past, the core engineering team & the data science/machine learning teams worked separately. The core engineering team ships the product & focuses on reliability. For most companies, the data science team analyzed data & wrote machine learning...

Pulp Nonfiction : What I Learned Writing a Blog Post with ChatGPT

Over the past week, I put ChatGPT to the test, enlisting it as copy-editor for a forthcoming blog post. Here was my process: I dictated a blog post outline into a Google document I prompted ChatGPT to revise the post for clarity & pasted the text I copied ChatGPT’s response, edited it some more & consulted ChatGPT for three rounds just...

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