The path to become the [leader X] of [ industry Y]
Clement Vouillon

Clement, in cross-checking with Crunchbase (here and here), it looks like both Hootsuite and Segment raised a seed round when they were “pre-platform”. I’m guessing they had strong tool metrics, but it’s unclear how far down the route to platform they were.

In your opinion, how should a tool-first-platform-later SaaS startup approach early-stage VCs? Leading with strong tool metrics or leading with a (quite possibly “fuzzier”) platform vision? The former has solid data but is often a smaller opportunity for a VC; the latter may be more worthy of VC capital, but is farther from being a sure thing.

If, as I suspect, the answer is ‘both!’, in practical terms, what validation would a VC need to see believe in the grander platform vision?

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