For PR and communications professionals, staying on top of industry trends is vital. And, for those operating in high-growth sectors like SaaS, industry events are not just networking opportunities. They’re a goldmine of insights.
SaaStr Annual 2023, which bills itself as “the world’s #1 cloud gathering,” will kick off next week, so we spent some time reviewing the agenda and featured speakers to better understand possible topics, issues, and questions. Here are three themes we expect to emerge from this year’s SaaStr Annual:
It’s no shock that AI — possibly the most talked-about tech innovation of 2023 — will be a frequent topic of discussion at SaaStr Annual. The agenda includes 20+ sessions mentioning AI either as the session’s overall theme or as a component.
One to watch? Adobe Chief Strategy Officer Scott Belsky will present on the impact of AI on creativity and digital experiences and the profound transformations taking place in the creative world. It’s a topic he’s touched on this year in conversations with both VentureBeat and TechCrunch, and it will be interesting to see how that narrative expands.
Scaling Despite Limited Resources
There’s one word that appears more on the SaaStr agenda than “AI” (and possibly even “SaaS”). That word is “scale.”
With session topics like “How to Scale >2x/Yr ARR with Low Budgets and Lean Ops” and “What the Top Founders Do Better to Scale Even Now,” expect the trend of “doing more with less” and themes of an unpredictable market and tough economy to be a large part of the “how to scale” conversation at SaaStr this year.
The Role of the CRO
We may see more CROs in the future. As management consulting firm McKinsey & Company wrote last month, many successful high-growth companies are reimagining marketing and sales functions and, in doing so, adding new leadership, often a CRO. The article explains that while “the title [of that new leadership role] may be different depending on the company (chief growth officer, chief commercial officer or chief experience officer to name a few), the responsibilities are generally the same.”
The role of the CRO is the focus of multiple sessions during SaaStr Annual, including, “CRO Confidential Live with Gong’s VP of Sales” and a panel titled “Path to CRO” featuring a number of female CROs from various SaaS companies.
Headed to SaaStr this year? What topics are you excited to discuss? Tweet (we can still say that, right?) us at @CrenshawComm and let us know.