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💊 10 Startup Lessons You Can Learn From Walter White

Lessons on partnerships, trust, scaling a business and delivering an exceptional product

SaaS Strategists,

This issue will be a bit more on the cooler side. 😎 

I started a series of posts on my Twitter & LinkedIn where I compare characters in TV shows to SaaS startup founders.

And man did I have fun doing so.

Today I wanted to dive deep into the lessons you can draw from Walter White’s journey toward the top of the (meth) pyramid.

(May contain spoilers)

Let’s dive in 👇️ 

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10 Startup Lessons You Can Learn From Walter White

If you haven’t already watched Breaking Bad, here’s an advice:

  1. Save this newsletter for later.

  2. Go binge-watch 60 hours worth of Breaking Bad.

  3. Come back.

You’re back?

What a ride huh?

Cool.

Now, you’re ready to experience the true Walter White effect.

Let’s dive into it.

1) Adapt Fast

Walter was a chem teacher.

Once he heard his diagnosis he transformed into a meth kingpin in a couple of months.

He went all in.

And so should you.

Embrace change & adapt fast.

This way, you’ll stay ahead of your competition.

Embrace new technologies, market trends, and customer feedback.

Your product requires you to keep an eye on your competition.

And stay ahead of them.

2) Complementary Co-Founding

Along his journey, Walter meets Jesse.

They both understand their role from the start.

Walter is the production.

Jesse is the distribution.

Without a clear role separation, no startup, SaaS, or business, in general, can move forward.

Know. Your. Role.

And execute upon it.

3) Exceptional Product

Walter & Jesse’s product had 99% pureness.

It was the purest form of methamphetamine on the market.

And it had a blue color.

A great unique selling proposition.

Without it, chances are, they wouldn’t be able to capitalize upon their target market.

Naturally, this increased the demand.

Make sure your startup’s execution is at a high level and has a feature that can separate it from the rest.

4) Unique Value Prop

Walter’s blue methamphetamine became his unique selling proposition.

Similarly, your startup must offer a USP that sets you apart from competitors.

Identify a niche, solve a specific problem, or provide a distinct feature that makes your product irresistible.

You’ll have much higher chances of catching your audience’s attention this way.

5) Create a Memorable Identity

Remember the iconic Heisenberg persona?

Walter created a powerful brand around his alter ego.

Likewise, your startup needs a memorable brand identity.

Develop a consistent messaging protocol and a compelling story that resonates with your target audience.

6) Analyze & Optimize

Walter's attention to detail allowed him to optimize his production process.

Similarly, startups should leverage data analytics to make informed decisions.

Analyze user behavior, track key metrics, and use the insights gained to improve your product & strategy.

Never stop tracking.

7) Know Your Audience

Walter understood his target market.

He knew exactly who he should target.

Similarly, in the startup & SaaS industry, you must conduct thorough market research to understand your target audience's pain points, needs, and preferences.

Without that, you’re just trying to sell ice to a penguin.

8) Stay Ahead

Walter was always one step ahead of his competitors.

In this case, it was Gus Fring.

He analyzed Gus’s model & knew exactly how he operates.

The same principle goes for your startup.

Analyze → Understand → Implement (better).

9) Stay Close

Walter was living in the same neighborhood as Hank, his DEA brother-in-law.

Hank never thought much of Walter.

However, Walter was always close to him, monitoring his every move.

But he ultimately slipped up.

Stay close to your competitors and always be watching.

Don’t slip up like Walter.

Or just don’t let your competitors use your bathroom. 🤷 

10) Nurture Talent

Walter & Jesse had their own disagreements.

But he knew how important Jesse is to the whole operation.

He knew that it was better to keep a good relationship with him, rather than find a new partner every few months.

The same rule applies to startups.

Nurture your talent.

11) BONUS - Get a Good Lawyer

Let’s hope you don’t ever have to go crazy with this one.

But better to have legal documents prepared from the start.

🔝 Top Tweets

Here are the 2 top tweets from this week:

🔥 SaaS Fire

SaaS products so good they'll light up your week:

LeadDelta is your go-to LinkedIn connection & prospecting management tool.

With tona you can safely put your competition monitoring on autopilot.

💡Idea of the Week

Here’s the SaaS idea of the week:

An advanced B2B SaaS platform that revolutionizes sales teams' productivity and success. Using cutting-edge artificial intelligence, it automates repetitive sales tasks, streamlines workflows, and provides real-time insights to boost sales performance. With customizable modules, this SaaS tool caters to various sales processes, enabling businesses to optimize their sales funnel, close deals faster, and drive revenue growth.

Pros

  • Increased Efficiency: Its automation capabilities save sales reps valuable time, enabling them to focus on building relationships and closing deals. The streamlined workflows lead to quicker sales cycles, reducing lead leakage and increasing conversion rates.

  • Actionable Insights: By analyzing vast amounts of data, it generates actionable insights on customer behavior, sales trends, and team performance. These insights empower sales managers to make informed decisions, refine strategies, and identify new growth opportunities.

Cons

  • Integration Challenges: Implementing this solution might require integration with existing CRM and sales tools, posing initial setup challenges for some organizations. Ensuring seamless data flow and compatibility could be time-consuming.

  • Adoption Resistance: Sales teams accustomed to traditional methods may resist embracing AI-driven technologies. Overcoming the initial skepticism and providing adequate training is essential to ensure successful adoption and optimal utilization of the platform.

Well, I hope you enjoyed me breaking down the business of drugs and how it relates to startups. Damn. 😂 

Let me know how did you like this issue and if I should do more of these analogies.

Feel free to reply to this email and send me your thoughts on what character I should break down next.

I’ll catch you in the next one.

How did you like this week's issue of SaaS Strats?

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Ognjen Gatalo

Chief SaaS Strategist ☁️ 

P.S. Don’t distribute meth. Distribute SaaS.

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