I asked founders this question to understand better their journeys. For the
first time, I wanted to compare our experience with other startups. But then I
realized it's a great way to gather the most popular channels for early stages

There are a bunch of different ways of how B2B SaaS startups got their first 10
clients. I filtered all answers and ranged it based on the popularity.

Before jumping to the answers, I should mention one thing. Nobody said about
SEO. And I know that SEO is a significant channel for many companies for
generating leads and sales. However, it takes time to start acquiring leads
organically from Google and all founders who responded to me preferred to use
other ways to find first customers. It doesn’t mean that SEO doesn’t work. It
just takes more time (usually 6+ months) to see results.

I hope this post helps other early stages startups find the best channels for

Here are the most popular channels for getting the first customers:

* Cold emails: worked for 8 founders

* LinkedIn: worked for 5 founders

* Facebook communities: worked for 4 founders

* Product hunt: worked for 3 founders

* Quora: worked for 3 founders

* Existing connections: worked for 2 founders

* Google Adwords: worked for 2 founders

* Niche forums: worked for 1 founder

* Events: worked for 1 founder

* Cold calls: worked for 1 founder

In our experience, we got the first clients from the YC community. However, I
think we can structure all answers to 5 main pillars that have the highest
opportunity to get the first customers to early-stages SaaS startups.

1. Cold Outreach: email, LinkedIn, calls, etc

2. Communities & Social Media: Facebook groups, Reddit, Quora, niche forums,
events, etc

3. Startup Directories: Product Hunt, Betalist

4. Ads: Google Adwords, Facebook

5. Marketplaces & Platforms: Shopify, Slack directories, etc

There is no one ideal way that works for everyone. Understanding the ideal
customer profile (ICP) is crucial. Finding where ideal clients are aggregated
helps us a lot.

Understanding your ICP +Testing different approaches + Analysing results =

So this was my little research. Hopefully, you found this helpful.

If anyone has any thoughts or even just wants to stay connected on Facebook,
send me a friend request.

As well, I’m trying to make a habit of writing more, so if there are any other
topics you want to hear about, just drop it in the comment below!

I’m always open to growing my network and meeting other founders and hustlers.


Posted by Anton Cherkasov on Facebook