MinRegion+ roundup: Make your CRO fly, reduce cloud costs the right way, how to write a cold email

Landing pages are one of the first places startups experiment and fine-tune their messaging, but if you don’t constantly iterate, you’re leaving money on the table

In his latest column, growth marketing expert Jonathan Martinez identifies multiple conversion rate optimization (CRO) experiments and explains how “efforts can be streamlined so that you can… have a consistent metric.”

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This is the test framework he uses:

  • Make a list of hypotheses.
  • Implement a stack ranking methodology.
  • Determine a primary statistic for each experiment.
  • Set up a baseline method to determine winners.

“CRO is so important to early-stage startups,” Martinez noted on Twitter. “It’s when you can most easily find those 10-20% gains in conversion rates in the funnel.”

Thank you for reading,

Walter Thompson
Editorial Manager, MinRegion+
@your protagonist

Threading the Needle: An Inside Look at Paul Judge’s Plans for Softbank’s Open Opportunity Fund

Paul Judge, new leader of SB's new Open Opportunity Fund

Image Credits: Paul Judge /

Dominic Madori-Davis interviewed Paul Judge, the new chairman of Softbank’s recently renamed Open Opportunity Fund.

With plans for a new $150 million fund that will support founders from traditionally marginalized communities, Judge is adopting the relationship-based model that defines venture capital.

“It was about getting a ‘warm introduction,’ and people brag about that — ‘Oh, you have to know someone to meet me,'” he said.

“My view is that’s what led to the system being closed.”

Before reducing your cloud spend, consider sharing your billing information internally

scissors with black handle against a gray background

Image Credits: Mrs (Opens in a new window) /Getty Images

Every startup is under pressure to save money in this macroeconomic environment. And because everyone pays for cloud-based services, it’s a ripe target for cost savings.

But it’s not an all-or-nothing game, says Naveen Zutshi, CIO at software company Databricks. He says his company reduced cloud spending by 25% — not by moving on-prem, but “by providing insight into where and how the team spent money.”

In this TC+ article, he describes the methodology Databricks has developed to use cost allocation tagging, visibility dashboards, and other tools to reduce the overall IT budget.

“It’s possible to find spaces to cut,” says Zutshi. “But don’t take it lightly: Reducing cloud spend should be more about optimizing budget for long-term ROI than cutting costs.”

How to write the perfect cold email to investors

Many missed arrows with only one hitting the center of the target

Image Credits: Julia Leba (Opens in a new window) /Getty Images

With a little research, any founder hopeful can create a spreadsheet with names and email addresses for investors they hope to pitch.

A personal introduction is much more effective, but Haje Jan Kamps says cold emails can be effective as long as you follow some best practices.

Rule 1? “Short is good.”

In this article, he explains how to get a holistic understanding of an investor’s position and shares two email templates, one written by ChatGPT (spoiler: it’s terrible).

Executives say they are committed to ESG, but data shows otherwise

Green sponges on a pink background to symbolize green washing.

Image Credits: Serhii Shleihel / Getty Images

Consumers say they’re interested in buying products from companies with environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives, but “the 2023 Google Cloud Sustainability Survey suggests executive resolve is waning,” report Tim De Chant and Ron Miller.

Referring to overall economic conditions and pressure to increase revenues, the report “found that the number of sustainability projects being implemented, as opposed to just planned, was 8% lower than last year.”

But self-reporting is tricky: 59% of respondents said they had also overstated their ESG efforts.

To hold these organizations more accountable, “that takes data, and startups can help,” write Tim and Ron.

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