235. Why Corporate VC Gets a Bad Wrap; Microsoft’s Fresh Approach to CVC; and Key Insights to Acquire Mass Users (Tamara Steffens)

235. Why Corporate VC Gets a Bad Wrap; Microsoft's Fresh Approach to CVC; and Key Insights to Acquire Mass Users (Tamara Steffens)
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Nick Moran Angel List

Tamara Steffens of M12 joins Nick on a special Crisis Coverage installment to discuss Why Corporate VC Gets a Bad Wrap; Microsoft’s Fresh Approach to CVC; and Key Insights to Acquire Mass Users. In this episode, we cover:

  • Background and path to venture
  • Overview of the thesis at M12
  • Investments since COVID? Changes in strategy, markets of interest
  • CVC has the reputation of being very slow, not leading deals, imposing restrictive terms, and thinking only about broader success of their parent company— what’s different about M12?
  • What’s your approach to sourcing?
  • You are known as a user acquisition expert in the valley… having generated millions of app downloads for Path, Color and Acompli. One of your main suggestions is to “Dismantle the silos” … what do you mean by that?
  • You’ve cited the top three things you need to make your app part of the zeitgeist — can you walk us through each and why they’re critical?
  • Talk about the ‘Leaky Bucket’ of new user acquisition and how to avoid it?
  • What’s a good level of user retention (%) after 6 weeks?
  • What are the biggest differences in approach when acquiring consumers vs. enterprise customers?
  • What are the main KPIs/OKRs you track when optimizing a sales funnel / team?
  • I’d like to talk a bit more about the startups you work with… What are the key factors you’re looking for in investments?
  • How do you work with your portfolio companies?
  • Why should every startup be thinking about culture as they build their companies?
  • How are founders today different from founders 20 years ago?
  • What tips do you have for founders pitching investors remotely?

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