3 Things: HelloFresh for Instant Pot, Next Gen TIGER 21, No More "See a Demo" Forms
Happy Sunday and a very warm welcome to all the new subscribers! I’m thrilled and honored to have you as readers and truly appreciate your thoughts and feedback 🙏. Each edition of 3 Things will contain a dive into 3 rabbit holes I’ve found myself going down recently. Subscribe to get each week’s edition straight to your inbox and if you enjoy it, please share (I suck at self-promotion so can use your help)! This past week I’ve been thinking a lot about:
HelloFresh for Instant Pot
Next Gen Tiger21
No More “See a Demo” Forms
1. HelloFresh for Instant Pot
The history of meal delivery kits doesn’t actually go back that far. The first ones came on the market in Sweden in 2007 with the launch of Middagsfrid (which was started by a mother of 3 who wanted to provide the convenience of home-cooked meals to families without the hassle of meal planning and shopping) and 2008 with Linas Matkasse. The concept caught on in the US in the early 2010s and Blue Apron, HelloFresh, and Plated all launched in 2012. By 2017, there were over 150 different meal delivery services in the US alone. Americans spend close to 10% of their annual incomes on food and meal kits provide convenience, variety, healthy options, and portion control which appeal to a lot of people. The current market size is ~$18B and expected to grow to $64B by 2030.
Meal kits are much more cost effective than take-out or delivery (and way healthier) but still involve a decent amount of work preparing the meals. At this point, over 1 in 3 households in the US owns and Instant Pot (and probably many more own a more traditional slow cooker or crock pot!) which is one of the easiest and most versatile cooking devices. A company could offer a differentiated meal kit service that is solely Instant Pot recipes. Just like the other companies, you’d select any preferences or dietary restrictions, number of people in your household, and how many meals you want per week. You’d then receive perfectly portioned food that just goes straight into the Instant Pot with cooking instructions. Given you can make everything from soups/stews to beef and broccoli to shrimp boil to ribs and even chocolate cake in the Instant Pot, the possibilities are endless in terms of recipes. A similar model would be meals designed for the Air Fryer which has also skyrocketed in popularity over the last few years.
2. Next Gen TIGER 21
In 1999, Michael Sonnenfeldt, who started and sold a real estate investment group, brought together 6 entrepreneurs in NYC who had recently sold their businesses and were thinking about how to preserve wealth. He called the group TIGER 21 and it quickly grew to encompass a large group of high net worth individuals (HNWI). They group people who have $20+ million in investable assets into small cohorts to discuss investment strategies, philanthropic endeavors, market dynamics and more. The organization currently has 1100 members across 95 groups in 42 different markets. Members pay $33k annually to participate in 11 chapter meetings with groups of 5-15 and one all-member event.
Between the time when TIGER 21 was founded and now, there has been an exponential rise in individuals who have substantial wealth, most driven by the tech sector and it’s huge number of exits over the last few years. These are not just the founders but the early employees and executives. Many of these people find themselves in a new financial situation and become curious about angel investing, determining how to minimize taxes, or begin thinking about their next chapter. There is YC for early stage founders, YPO for CEOs under 45 that meet specific revenue and employee thresholds, and TIGER 21 for older business owners with substantial wealth, but there is no community organization of peers who were not founders or CEOs but made a lot of money from IPOs or acquisitions. A company could focus on this persona and create a highly engaging, mostly digital, small cohort-based program for peers. It would be an annual subscription that gets you access to content, digital events, and periodic in person meetups and larger-scale events across the country and globe. It could be similar to Dialog but focused on financial topics and wealth management and by keeping it exclusive and with stringent requirements, you could charge a hefty subscription. At even $15k annually, if you had just 1000 members you’d already be at $15m ARR.
3. No More “See a Demo” Forms
One of the most frustrating things about buying enterprise software is the inevitable point where you want to see the product and click the “See the Product in Action”, “Get Started”, or “See a Demo” link on the website. You think it will take you to a demo video or sandbox environment, but it inevitably takes you to a form that asks for a bunch of information and then tries to schedule a time, often days or weeks out, to meet with a sales person where they will try to qualify you. Regardless of where you are in the buying journey, when you click that button, you’re looking to move on from the marketing website and see the product and determine whether it may fit your needs. The term PLG or Product Led Growth is all the rage right now as companies move away from purely sales-led motions and enable customers to self-serve, yet for the vast majority of B2B SaaS, you can’t just immediately use the product.
There are now numerous companies who sell software to build interactive product demos but the joke is that most of these companies have buttons on their sites that say “Get a Demo” which lead to a f*ing form!! Millennials and GenZ tech folks who are now becoming leaders and buyers at their companies don’t want to talk to sales, they want to self-serve. There are companies like TestBox who enable buyers to compare and test multiple products in live sandbox environments (full disclosure, they are a portfolio company). Click on the “Get Started” button and see how different the experience is from normal software websites! This is a great experience for buyers who are looking to compare multiple products and find the best fit, however individual companies still want to make the most of their website to attract and convert prospects, so there is an opportunity to cater to this marketing use case. Provide a widget that helps capture and surface different product demos and pull in data from marketing and sales tools to personalize the experience (such as adding their name or company to the demo if they are cookied or you can do a reverse IP lookup). But, “how will they get in touch with me if they actually want to talk or get more information?!?” you might ask. Live chat widgets, exit intent popups, and various other ways for prospects to easily give you more information and get in touch are a commodity at this point. Bundle these into the demo experience and push data back into the CRM to create a feedback loop and also show ROI.
That’s all for today! If you have thoughts, comments, or want to get in touch, find me on Twitter at @ezelby and if you enjoyed this, please subscribe and share with a friend or two!