Articles by Bobby Pinero
- The fallacy of freemium in SaaS
The CEO of Equals, Bobby Pinero, initially gated access to the spreadsheet product to manually onboard customers. This strategy was successful, allowing Equals to raise a $16M Series A funding round. However, Pinero then decided to introduce a free tier to emulate competitors like Notion and Figma. While initial signups increased, Equals struggled to retain free users or convert them to paid plans over the next 6 months. Pinero realized the free model was not working for Equals and switched to a free trial model requiring a credit card. Remarkably, this reintroduction of friction led to a resurgence in growth and more engaged users. Not all friction is bad, and Equals' experience shows requiring investment from users can build a stronger business.