Slack is the best example of product-led growth around. Come for the free tier, stay for the TD Ameritrade enterprise rollout, create billions in value. But translating product-led hockey-stick growth into the linear enterprise sales growth, where your customers are now deputy CTOs of Fortune 100,000,000 companies, is a grim business. It’s kind of anti-product work. The giant enterprise clients aren’t product-focused orgs, but they start to have demands on your roadmap. Building out products for those customers is incredibly hard and the companies that have done it are the ones you know: Amazon, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, and Salesforce. Salesforce has a loud, goofy, proactive, enormous enterprise culture that is the least likely to destroy the product vision for Slack. People seem to like working there. So if you were Slack and saw a lot of risk in building out an enterprise culture that could scale to $100 billion in revenue around your product roadmap, while Salesforce already has one and can actually use your product roadmap, getting bought by Salesforce would feel like a huge relief. I truly don’t know, though. I know lots of people at Slack but haven’t talked with anyone really since the pandemic started. Sorry if I mis-speculated.
Let’s Skim! The Slack/Salesforce Press Release | by Paul Ford | Dec, 2020 | Medium: