Breakthroughs Can Break You

Semmelweis made a breakthrough in early 1800s. He came up with what is known as the hand-washing technique today. Because of his discovery, the mortality rate in women giving birth went down from 18% to 0. Despite that, his discovery never was acknowledged. Instead he died in a mental asylum when he was 47 only.

Garry Tan did a vlog on how breakthroughs can break you and what you can do to avoid that from happening. I’ll leave you to it.

Customer Acquisition During Recession

I saw an interesting video by Garry Tan where he mentioned that startups spend as much as 40% of the funds they raise on Google & Facebook ads. That is a lot. In other words, 40% of all VC money is going to those 2 companies. This is obviously going to reduce in the coming months and so we could expect this to reflect in the earnings of these 2 companies.

During the upcoming recession caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the advice that seems to be coming from everywhere is to have cash runway that lasts 18 months.

In order for this to work, many startups are going to reduce their spending or risk survival. One option that all startups have is to allocate more time and resources to retain more customers instead of acquisition, as the former is often cheaper.

The startups that are going to continue to invest in customer acquisition need to know that the lifetime value of customers would most certainly be lower than what they were accustomed to. Because of this, an immediate recalibration would be required for ROI metrics. Acquiring customers on a better a ROI than before should be the norm for the next few months.

These are difficult times for everyone including us but looking into pandemics of the past suggests that all this should be over soon.