Tomasz Tunguz is partner at Redpoint. I write daily, data-driven blog posts about key questions facing startups. I co-authored the book, Winning with Data. Join more than 20,000 others receiving these blog posts by email.

The Impact of VCs in Seed Rounds in Seven Charts

For the past several years, early stage VCs have entered the seed market with vigor. VC"s entry has resulted five different important trends in the past five years

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The Riskiest Investment a Startup Can Make

Marketing investments are unlike any other investment a startup. They are the least-tangible, least-measurable investments and that is why they are perceived as the riskiest investments.

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The Hidden Costs of the Switching Products in the Consumer Web

Michael Porter created the Five Forces Framework in 1979 in a landmark book called Competitive Strategy. One of those forces, the threat of substitutes has intrigued me for quite a while because in the world of the Internet, the prevailing wisdom on switching costs argues they are trivial on the web. After all, how difficult is it to change from Google search to Bing search? This is the question Google wrestled with during its search share battle in the mid 00s.

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Salesforce's Marketing Secret: The Fourth Marketing P

In his book Behind the Cloud: The Untold Story of How Salesforce went from Idea to Billion Dollar Company and Revolutionized an Industry, Marc Benioff shares the 111 plays he learned through Salesforce triumphant rise to the most valuable SaaS company in the world. Play 15 is my favorite from the book.

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The Common Characteristics of Successful Freemium Companies

Is there a common characteristic of successful freemium companies? Piotr asked this question earlier this week. This is the framework I've seen work well for freemium startups.

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The Impact of Varying Sales Hiring Strategies on SaaS Startups

What are the tradeoffs when considering different sales hiring plans and which is the right one for your startup? There are many different considerations in creating a sales hiring plan. Balancing them all can be tricky, but thinking through the trade-offs is important to scaling the business well.

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The Common Language of Great Teams

Last week, Redpoint held our annual Founder Day gathering. At the event, I listened to the stories of Felix Baumgartner's record breaking jump from 120,000 feet, heard about the astonishing comeback of the US America's Cup team and took part in a creativity workshop led by a Stanford Design School professor. In short, the event revolved around doubt.

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The Five Letters that Will Change the Data World: BYOBI

BYOBI is an acronym I first heard on a telephone call with a VP of Technology at a large corporation. The word is almost unknown today, but I think that it will be one of the largest trends to impact data in the next five years.

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Confessions of a Perpetual Freeloader: When to Jettison the Freemium Tier

I’m a perpetual freeloader. Like a houseguest who has overstayed his welcome with hundreds of people, I depend upon the generosity of strangers - in particular, software teams. I’ve used HelloFax to sign documents for years, but I haven’t paid them a nickel. The same is true for GMail, Google Docs, TripIt, TypeKit, UberConference, LogMeIn, Evernote, the list goes on.

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A Surprisingly Powerful Mechanism for Growing a SaaS Startup

One of the single most effective tools SaaS companies can use in order to grow faster isn't tweaking the product in a particular way or implementing an AB optimization framework or adopting new marketing tactic. Rather, it's financial judo for structuring contracts and cash collection.

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