#279 - Rachel Renock, CEO of Wethos - on daring to be different  

A story about leveraging technology to help potentially 100 million freelancers make more money. 


This podcast interview focuses on product innovation that has the power to enable freelancers to take the guesswork out of running their business. My guest is Rachel Renock, Co-founder and CEO of Wethos.

Rachel Renock has held various positions in the creative industry since 2009. Digital Design Intern at VOX Global. Associate Art Director at G2 Worldwide. Art Director and Visual Designer at Havas Worldwide and, ultimately, in 2015, a freelance role as a Photographer/ Designer at OPAM.

After quitting her job in advertising to pursue more meaningful work, she co-founded a freelance studio to put together project-based teams for nonprofit organizations. In just 18 months, this generated $1.4 million in gross revenue and deployed over 150 diverse creative teams of the best and brightest. 

But with their fast growth came the chaos of scale and a mountain of spreadsheets. From figuring out what to charge to putting scopes of work together to managing invoices and payments to collaborators, the paperwork never seemed to end.

This became the founding idea for Wethos, which she leads as the CEO. 

Wethos is solving arguably the most difficult challenge in the freelance economy. 

Vision: Put more money into the pockets of independents everywhere

Their mission: make it easier for founders to start and scale their freelance businesses and help more people break 6-figures. 

And this inspired me, and hence I invited Rachel to my podcast. We explore what’s broken in the way freelancers manage their business. Rachel shares her vision of how to solve this. She then elaborates on how she’s been addressing the problem radically differently from the start – and how that helped to create strong momentum, growing from serving 100 freelancers in 2020, to well over 80.000 businesses today. She shares her lessons learned, what to pay attention to (and what not). Last but not least, she shares her perspective on creating a SaaS business people start talking about and keep talking about.

Here’s one of her quotes:

One thing that we were really cognizant of is making sure that we were focusing on profitability and not productivity, I think there is a challenge there. There is a lot of productivity software. There are a lot of software providers out there that are going to tell you, we’re going to save you my time, we’re gonna make you more efficient. 

With our software, we want it to help freelancers make more money, we wanted to help them to capture more margin, and we wanted it to help them figure out how much we should charge for this thing.

During this interview, you will learn four things:

  1. Not every business is managed equally – and that’s a massive opportunity to create durable differentiation.
  2. Many SaaS founders become a magnet for competition just by selecting the problem they solve for.
  3. How to solidly embed your vision into every decision made inside your SaaS business.
  4. Some simple secrets to creating a messaging that resonates

 

For more information about the guest from this week:

 

 

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About the author

Sales Pitch

Ton Dobbe is a former B2B software product marketer who's on a mission to save mission-driven SaaS CEOs from the stress of 'not enough' traction. He's the author of The Remarkable Effect, the host of the Tech-Entrepreneur on a Mission podcast, and writes a daily newsletter on the secrets to mastering predictable traction.