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Bootstrapping to $200 Million: Jorn Lyseggen, CEO of Meltwater (Part 4)

Posted on Friday, Aug 28th 2015

Jorn Lyseggen: We started approaching this in a completely different way. We tried hiring our own sales people. We wanted to engage the clients in a much more strategic way. Instead of talking about our product, we wanted to engage the clients on their domain and try to understand their pain. Once we understood their pain, then we started to talk about our product and how our product could address their pain. Without changing the product or the pricing, but just with the way we sold it, we saw a dramatic change. Very quickly, we started to attract a lot of clients.

Sramana Mitra: What were you hearing from these people? As you tried to sell it differently, what were they telling you?

Jorn Lyseggen: It was more a matter of listening to what the pain point was than to try to sell them a product. Before you try to sell them a product, first listen to them. It sounds very banal, but it actually has a profound impact.

Sramana Mitra: I understand that. This is what we teach in our program. Before you write a line of code, you should immerse yourself in customers and understand what the pain point is. The question that I’m asking you is, as you implemented that process, what did you learn about their pain? What was the pain that they were highlighting?

Jorn Lyseggen: The pain was very close to the original vision we had. They were busy. It was hard for them to keep on top of all the issues regarding their competitors and clients. People were super excited when they understood how we could help them automate this process and do this consistently and sytematically without them having to spend energy on it. What was required was quite a little bit of work on both sides. The clients needed to invest some time as we have invested time to figure out the key insights or information that is the most relevant for them. There is this flood of data out there and unless you filter that in an intelligent way and unless you filter that in such a way that you only get the good nuggets, that information just becomes noisy.

We were working in an interactive fashion with the clients to find out exactly the level of information they wanted. Each client or person has a different preference in that regard. Some people want to know everything that is even remotely relevant to their company. There are others who want just the specific highlights. Part of the sales process was to find that out – where that person was. Once we found that out, we could create the value that they were looking for.

This segment is part 4 in the series : Bootstrapping to $200 Million: Jorn Lyseggen, CEO of Meltwater
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