The Unicorn


We all hear stories—the dream come true, the Unicorn of the market.  While I was leading customer success a few years ago, I interviewed at one of these companies.  The one that seems like they have it all figured out—strong year-over-year growth, low CAC and high net revenue retention and growing ACV.  

Their customers loved them

  • They grew to $100 MM ARR without any outbound sales motion.

  • They did not introduce lead generation until they grew to $120MM in ARR

  • During pre-sales, they focused on solving just one initial use case

  • Their average contract value (ACV) for new logos is around $50K.  (over time grew a significant percentage of customer to over $1MM in ARR)

  • There was little customer churn and net retention rates are well above 140%.

  • Customer acquisition costs were low—> 60% of leads come as referrals

This company exemplified the perfect execution of capturing their customer’s attention and holding it.  Which resulted in success outlined above. During my conversations with their leadership what stood out was that their approach went beyond asking the customer success organization and account executives to sell more.  It was clear that their entire go-to-market team was aligned around the success of their customer. 

No Drift—Just Momentum

This company knows their customer—they had a well defined ideal customer profile (ICP) and their go-to-market teams and executives were aligned around this ICP.  If the prospect doesn’t match the ICP, they don’t sell to them.

Great companies know their ideal customer profile!