SaaSBoomi Rewind 2019 — Ish Jindal of TARS
Notes and memories from the 2019 edition of SaaSBoomi
Continuing our SaaSBoomi Rewind, we speak to Ish Jindal of TARS about his experience at SaaSBoomi, and why he thinks SaaSBoomi is the place to be for hot young startups like TARS.
His company is poised for a great 2020, and is one of the fastest growing MarTech startups out of India right now. Our conversation with him follows.
Also, You can apply for SaaSBoomi 2020 here.
SB — Hi Ish, how has TARS been doing?
IJ — Oh we’ve had a good 2019. We’ve grown revenues about 3x in the last year. But more importantly, it’s been a year that’s clarified a lot of our thinking for us. And for me personally, growing the company, which is now about 13–14 folks, is something I’m happy about. Important mostly because this was the direction I had thought about when starting TARS.
SB — Nice, Ish. Sounds like you are really ready for the new year. Tell us this, what prompted you to apply for SaaSBoomi last year?
IJ — Haha simple, an advisor of ours asked us to. But seriously, there were not a lot of quality meet-ups happening for B2B SaaS, specifically where there is honest learning to be had, you know, with actionable numbers-backed up advice. This was definitely something I was seeking, and with SaaSBoomi, that was filled. There’s so much I care and admire about SaaSBoomi — for one thing, there’s no fluff there, none at all. So yes, I was happy we applied.
SB — Seeing as there’s already so much information on the internet. Ish, especially about MarTech and everything related, how did SaaSBoomi help?
IJ — True. You can read a blog by marketing/founder in the US, read a book, even talk to someone. But actually meeting people like Krish, and marketers from Chennai who are as you know, the folks we are making TARS for, is so much more. But to me, I find that the conversations at discussions at SaaSBoomi are the ones I can actually relate to. To me Krish talking about the pricing > Patrick Campbell talking about pricing, simply because I look at Krish, and I see someone like me who has done this, figured this out, and it gives me confidence that what we want to do is achievable. I look around, and think, these are my people, if they can do it, why can’t I?
Also, so many people actually sharing stuff — critical, even proprietary stuff just so everyone can learn, is amazing. For example, Suresh’s session around SMB and mid-market last year, where he talking about thinking about the website as a product — these are things you can and will figure out after a while. But here they are, shortening the learning cycle for us, giving us specifics that are so clear, you ask yourself why you haven’t done this before. No gyan, just immediately actionable advice; it’s great.
SB — Super-pumped to hear that, Ish. We are glad! Okay, what was the top learning you took away from SaaSBoomi 2019?
IJ — Oh wow, there was this bit from Suresh’s session where he talked about ditching linear thinking for an approach that used product at the centre, and brought marketing, CSM, and everything else around it as concentric circles. It was one of the concepts that really allowed me to think about TARS differently, and that has given us dividends.In fact, when discussing things with the team, I find myself using the exact same words, which should tell you about the value I got from it.
SB — We are sure Suresh would love to hear that. Alright, was there anything you changed at TARS after attending SaaSBoomi 2019?
IJ — Definitely. At that time, we had been outsourcing certain marketing activity and output, like SEO, and some other content. Krish and Vinod specifically talked about this, that keeping all of this in was important to keep things on-brand and would give us more control, and that there was talent available that we should tap for this. Moreover, if founders knew and understood these things, it was going to be even better. I took that advice immediately, and brought SEO back in-house.
SB — That’s brilliant! And lastly, tell us this — what are you looking forward to, in SaaSBoomi 2020?
IJ — This year, we are looking for things that we can take and implement immediately, as we are in that phase of growth, and want to get cracking as fast as we can. In my conversations, I’d love to see who has grown their revenue by how much, and what we can learn from them; how growth has happened for some companies, and what they are doing right, and so on. In short, we are really looking forward to SaaSBoomi 2020!