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Research and Development 2017, Executive Summary

Complete Report Available to Softletter Subscribers The Softletter Benchmark 53 are all publicly-held companies and most of our basic business metrics are derived from documents these companies are legally required to provide to investors. (BTW, if you wondering why the report is showing 2015 results in 2017, the answer is that complete fiscal results for 2016 will only be available in the latter half of 2016 because some of our Benchmark 53 companies have fiscal calendars that run from June to June.) We have completely revamped our Benchmark 50, now the Benchmark 53, to reflect the profound changes the software industry

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Key Highlights from Softletter’s Software Company Staffing Report, Part II of II

The following information is excerpted from Softletter’s forthcoming Software Company Staffing Report. Very little information or data is available on this topic in the industry and given the recent controversy over such topics as outsourcing, H-1B, the relocation of jobs from the U.S. to international venues, the possible misuse of H-1B by companies such as Disney and Southern California Edison and the ongoing questions about how software companies staff up, we think this information very timely.  Both parts of this article will be open through the end of the year and then only be available to Softletter subscribers.) The Softletter 2016

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A Blueprint for Building the Virtual Company: A Review of The Invisible Organization by Mitch Russo, CEO of DiiDit

Purchase on Amazon The age of SaaS has reoriented thinking about how corporations should function and be structured. If an application can reside on servers scattered around the globe, a development group located overseas or on another continent, a customer service group operating out of Southeast Asia, and marketing communications provided by a bevy of temporary consultants and freelancers, what is the need for the traditional corporate model  of a big building packed with local employees managing and conducting business (particularly during the years of early growth) primarily from a single patch of real estate? In The Invisible Organization, Mitch

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Key Highlights from Softletter’s Software Company Staffing Report, Part I of II

Key Highlights from Softletter’s Software Company Staffing Report, Part I of II (The following information is excerpted from Softletter’s forthcoming Software Company Staffing Report. Very little information or data is available on this topic in the industry and given the recent controversy over such topics as outsourcing, H-1B, the relocation of jobs from the U.S. to international venues, the possible misuse of H-1B by companies such as Disney and Southern California Edison and the ongoing questions about how software companies staff up, we think this information very timely. This article will be open through the end of the year and then

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A SaaS Planning and Transition Tool For SaaS Companies

If you’re a SaaS company, you’re probably a major consumer of SaaS technology. Today’s cloud companies have access to a wide variety of tools and systems, including Email, SEO, marketing automation, project managers, social networking tools, sales contact management and on and on. It’s all available and in just about every case, SaaS systems offer flexibility and 24/7 connectivity that makes their usage not only useful, but just about mandatory. The Age of Corporate Servers and Desktops is drawing to a rapid end (at least until some major catastrophe shuts the web down for an extended period. Then we may

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How to Hire Software Sales Superstars

What Is a Sales Superstar? Anyone who has worked with that one exceptional sales person knows what I mean by a Sales Superstar. They possess an elusive quality of superior selling skills combined with persistence, intelligence and confidence. Put them in a bad situation and they excel nonetheless. Give them poor training, bad tools, old leads and they still emerge on top. A Sales Superstar performs under any conditions and outsells his or her peers by 200% to 500%.  The best sales people have a perfect balance of ego and empathy. Too much ego and force of will and the person is always closing but never builds a relationship

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Using SaaS Agent Programs to Build Revenues for Your Company, Part II of II

How large should your agent channel be? How many people/organizations? This is very dependent on several factors. I’d like to use a current client I’m working with as an example of how you might staff your agent channel. This company has a problem many would like to have—too many leads. They sell an information product and service and are generating around 10K leads per month. They don’t have a sales force in place and no agent channel. The way they respond to leads right now is via automated emails. That converts around 1.5% to 2% of their leads to sales.

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Using SaaS Agent Programs to Build Revenues for Your Company, Part I of II

Let’s step through the process. Can you provide a basic framework? Yes. First, don’t start your agent program too soon. As we both know, a new company should focus on learning about how to market and sell to its core customers. I recommend you begin to implement your program when you reach 1K subscribers. Why existing subscribers. Aren’t most of these people working for a company? Don’t they have jobs? There are a couple of reasons. The first is you want to make sure this pilot succeeds and is well reviewed by the participants. You’ll learn the most and receive

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An Interview with Daniel Kottke, the Man Who Built Some of Steve Jobs’ First Macintoshes (and Witness to the Last Steve Jobs Reality Distortion Field)

So, you never received a degree? No, I have two of them. I have a BA from Columbia College in Music/Literature and a law degree from Peninsula Univ. College of Law in Mountain View, CA. I had no idea you were a lawyer. I don’t actively practice. When I decided to go for my law degree, I thought maybe I’d work in IP (intellectual property) law, but I found I wasn’t a good temperamental fit to that specialty. Hardware engineers are always seeking to refine and simplify their work. Steve Wozniak was legendary for his ability to simplify his hardware

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A Lifetime of Regret: A Post Mortem of Steve Jobs the Movie

The Altair, Atari, IMSAI and TRS-80 all deserve their place in history, but it was Steve Wozniak’s monument, the Apple II, that best represents the weltanschauung of the time. The system was described in Apple ads as an “appliance” computer, but if you owned one, that was sheer nonsense. The Apple II, with its eight expansion slots, was completely accessible and beckoned its owners to expand and extend it in a myriad of ways. A forty-character screen not to your taste? The 80 character card (and the caps lock key mod) handled that issue. I/O, extended graphics, accelerator, CPM and

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MEET THE EDITORS AND EXPERTS

Rick Chapman

Find out more about Rick’s latest book, the latest edition of In Search of Stupidity: Over 40 Years of High-Tech Marketing Disasters.

John Miller

John has been working in the IT industry since the 1980’s firstly as a Sales and Marketing Director including Techex a global distribution company, Olivetti, Norsk Data and Intergraph

He was a founder member of Delta Channel Services  back in 1995 and has since visited over 40 countries consulting, speaking at channel conferences and delivering training workshops

John has launched several SaaS based business, a Non Executive Director to several start ups and is based in the UK