Pendo Raises $31M Helping 200 Customers With In App Messaging To Drive Usage with CEO Todd Olson

Todd Olson

In Episode #614, Nathan interviews Todd Olson. He’s the CEO and founder of Pendo, a product experience platform that helps product managers deliver successful products. Before Pendo, Todd served as VP of products at Rally Software Development which he led through its public offering. Todd joins Rally in its acquisition of 6th Sense, the company he founded and served as president and CTO.

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Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Good to Great
  • What CEO do you follow? – Aaron Levie
  • Favorite online tool? — 15Five
  • Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— No
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I wish I knew more at 21, than I thought I knew”

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:42 – Nathan introduces Todd to the show
  • 02:17 – Pendo provides a solution that helps companies build an application to improve its experience
  • 03:00 – Optimizely uses Pendo to understand the people who are in their trial and onboarding flow
  • 03:32 – Pendo is different to Intercom’s space
  • 04:01 – Pendo is a SaaS company
  • 04:21 – Pendo was launched in 2013
  • 05:11 – Todd experimented with different technologies
  • 05:26 – “Every product has key set features”
  • 05:45 – Todd founded 6th Sense and sold it to Rally
  • 06:24 – First year revenue is zero
  • 06:55 – Todd invested $1.2M to start Pendo
  • 07:11 – Pendo has raised a seed round
    • 07:44 – It was a million dollar convertible note
  • 08:15 – Pendo has raised a total of $31M
  • 08:26 – Team size
  • 08:55 – “All of our customers are top-tier”
  • 09:43 – Average customer pay per month
  • 09:52 – Pendo serves mid-market to enterprise companies
  • 10:20 – Todd shares what drives their expansion revenue
  • 10:50 – Pendo increases prices by adding products to existing plans
  • 10:55 – Pendo has tier-prices based on features
  • 11:17 – Todd shares why adding products is their main expansion driver
  • 12:30 – Average number of customers
  • 12:45 – Future target market
  • 13:00 – Average customer churn
  • 13:35 – Pendo has a net negative churn
  • 13:49 – Todd explains net negative churn
  • 14:54 – CAC and LTV ratio is healthy
  • 15:26 – Pendo’s expansion plan
  • 15:44 – Average MRR
  • 17:25 – The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Treat all your customers as if they are top-tier customers.
  2. Expansion drivers will depend on what suits the company.
  3. Be more confident.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible.
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books.
  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives