As a business owner, you know that lead generation is essential to the success of your company. But what is SaaS marketing? Learn about the top 5 tools you need to know to succeed in SaaS marketing.
I remember when I first started my business, I had no idea what is SaaS marketing or how important it would be for my company’s success. Thankfully, I found this blog post that taught me everything I needed to know about the subject. Now, I want to share that knowledge with you so that you can also benefit from it!
What Is SaaS Marketing?
SaaS marketing is a type of marketing that is specifically designed for software as a service (SaaS) products. SaaS products are software products that are delivered to customers over the internet, typically on a subscription basis.
SaaS marketing is a relatively new field, and there is still much debate about the best way to market SaaS products. However, some general principles are generally agreed upon by experts in the field.
One of the most important aspects of SaaS marketing is creating a strong value proposition for your product. This means clearly articulating the benefits of your product and why it is better than other options on the market.
Another important aspect of SaaS marketing is building a good relationship with your customers. This means providing excellent customer service and support, and regularly communicating with your customers to get feedback and learn about their needs.
What is SaaS?
Software as a Service (SaaS) is a method of delivering applications over the Internet. This type of delivery allows companies to use cloud computing services, rather than purchasing and installing software applications on their own computers.
So, you’re in the software as a service (SaaS) industry and are looking to ramp up your marketing efforts? You’ve come to the right place.
We’ve been gathering tips from experts across the world and our own team to put together this comprehensive guide to sales.
We’re going to share how you can build more effective marketing for your software as a service business.
The SaaS Industry
The cloud-computing industry has seen a boom in software as a service (SaaS) startups that are revolutionizing the way businesses operate. There are over 10,000 private companies and 50 public companies with a combined market capitalization of over $225 billion.
These companies all used what is known as SaaS marketing.
But what are the best ways to market your software as a service? What metrics should you track? What channel performs best?
SaaS Marketing Metrics
When you are selling SaaS, you are investing in the future success of each customer. This is different than consumer products because your customers can potentially generate recurring revenue.
To calculate the return on investment, use the expected value of a customer’s relationship with your company, not the first sale. These calculations can help you when allocating your marketing budget.
For an e-commerce website, all you need to track is how much each purchase is worth.
If you offer a free trial, you’ll need to figure out your conversion rate from free trial to paying customers.
And you should know your average customer’s worth.
How To Measure/Project Marketing Effectiveness for SaaS Companies
If your typical trial users are worth $36, and 20% of them convert, then each new free trial signup is $36.
The average customer lifetime value (CLV) is the average amount of money a customer will spend with your business. Multiply that by the percentage of free trial users who convert, and you’ll get the value of a single new free-trial sign-up.
What this means is that, to be profitable, each trial user needs to be worth at least $36 to your company. This number can be used as a guide when setting up conversion goals in Google Ads. If a campaign isn’t reaching this number, it may not be worth pursuing long-term.
These metrics will allow you to see which campaigns are likely to be more profitable than others.
This theory doesn’t always pan out. Customer Lifetime Value and Trial User Conversion Rates can vary depending on the marketing channels used.
Measure Channel-Specific Metrics
While it’s important to understand average customer lifetime value (CLV) and conversion metrics across all marketing channels and campaigns, it’s also important to measure each campaign and channel separately.
If you use customer relationship management software, you can track which channels your prospective customers came from. You can do this with URL tracking, or with something called a “UTM” parameter.
You can create a separate landing page for each marketing source, such as email, social media, or paid ads. Then, you can include a hidden field in the sign-up form that indicates the source for that lead.
It’s important that you only spend money on marketing channels that are proven to convert free trial users to paid customers. Otherwise, you could waste a lot of time and money on ineffective campaigns.
When we compared the return on investment for our Google search ads, it justified continuing the campaign based on the conversion rate of free trial users to paying ones.
The surprising answer was that no free trials the SaaS company got from paying Google for ads resulted in any conversions.
After realizing that their free trials weren’t converting into paying customers, they quickly turned their ads off.
This terrible tale of woe is a great example of how crucial it is to measure the lifetime value of your customers and your conversion rate for free trial users. By doing so, you can ensure that you aren’t wasting your marketing budget on channels that aren’t giving you a good return on your investment.
Without knowing which channels are driving the most sales, you can’t really tell which of your marketing efforts are paying off.
Top Channels For SaaS Marketing
Which marketing channel works best for your business will depend on your market and the skillset of your founders. The key to running an effective campaign is to establish a culture where ideas are shared, measured, and experimented upon.
Below, you’ll find some marketing tactics that work for early-stage startups that have a small budget.
The cost per click on CRM is $12.72. This means that for every visitor to your page, you need to give them more than $13 worth of value.
For most new companies, this just isn’t possible. You would need to convert an insane amount of customers, have an extremely high ratio of trials to paying customers, and have a very high lifetime value.
Large companies are buying out smaller companies, often for millions of dollars.
Thinking outside the box and being creative with marketing is absolutely essential.
Organic Search / SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of optimizing your content and website to rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs).
68% of all internet searches start with a Google search. As of 2019, Google has 92.37% of the search engine market.
And 57% of marketers say that SEO is their most effective tool for generating new sales.
If your software as a service (SaaS) is business to consumer (B2C), then search engine optimization (SEO) should be your priority.
SEO is the practice of improving the visibility of a web page or website in search results. The better the ranking, the more traffic the site will receive. Tools can help find relevant, low-competitive search terms.
Content can be optimized both for the target audience and for search. High authority links can be acquired. Analytics can be used to see what is working and what is not.
It might seem like a difficult undertaking, but the right SaaS company can learn how to use tracking its sales conversations within a short period.
Using search engine optimization (SEO) can be a powerful marketing tool for any software as a service (SaaS) company. Let’s look at an example of how effective it can be.
Success Story: Zapier
By focusing on simple, scalable, and repeatable processes, the team at Zapier has been able to grow their organic traffic by 1,000%.
Over 5 million unique visitors come to the website each month, and the majority of this comes from organic search.
And let’s look at another one of our favorite tools, Ahrefs.
Since 2014, the traffic to zapier.com has grown exponentially, with 1.1 million visitors per month. This impressive growth is a good indicator of the success of Zapier.
Their strategy is simple but effective.
By targeting the hundreds of available Slack and Trello integrations, the Zappier team can drive a significant amount of traffic to their website.
Individually, the keyword phrases may have low search volume. But when you combine hundreds of these, it can add up.
They created a unique landing page to target “SAAS Tool” + “Integration” keywords.
SEO Basics: Keyword Research
The basis of any successful search engine optimization (SEO) strategy involves researching which keywords people are searching for.
To get started, you can do some basic research using free tools like the Google Keyword Planner.
The keyword tool shows you how much people are searching for that term each month.
The Competition tab shows you who’s competing for the same keyword as you. The Top of Page Bid is how much the company is willing to pay per click.
If competition is high and your bids are high, then chances are you’re bidding on keywords that indicate an intent to purchase.
This is where some keyword research can come into play. Ideally, you want to find keyword phrases with a decent search volume, but you also want to make sure that these search terms have relatively high “commercial intent”.
The Keyword Planner only shows the number of companies who are competing for a search term. For further insight, you’ll need to use an advanced research tool that can give you more granular data.
SEO Basics: On-Page SEO
Google’s primary goal is to provide users with the best possible results for their search queries. By delivering high-quality results, they can keep users coming back to their search engine.
So, Google is in the business of providing users with the best possible experience. They do this by prioritizing websites that load quickly, are easy to navigate, and contain useful, relevant information.
Make sure your pages don’t have any major technical or structural issues.
Again, third-party tools are very helpful for on-page optimization.
According to research, on average, it takes 11.4 interactions before a customer converts. And 70% of consumers would rather get to know a brand through reading their blog than through an ad.
The most effective content marketing strategies are ones that use a variety of different formats.
This could include blog posts, white papers, reports, infographics, and videos. By using a variety of content types, you can reach a wider audience and more effectively communicate your message.
If you want to build an audience of loyal followers, you need to provide value with your content. Each post should be the start of a relationship with your audience that helps you achieve your goals.
But that’s just the beginning. You’ll also need a tone that your audience can relate to.
Content Marketing Strategy
Content strategy is not the same as content marketing.
A content strategy is a plan for how you will manage your content creation, archiving, and updating.
While content marketing is focused on the creation of your original content, it also involves editing and curation of that content to best promote your business.
If you’re trying to target 40-something software developers, consider posting on sites like StackOverflow, or in developer-specific Facebook Groups. These sites have huge audiences of your target demographic and are great ways to get them to engage with you.
Position yourself as a thought leader by educating your prospects on complex issues that concern them. Use technical terms and industry lingo to resonate with them.
Content Marketing Tactics
Most businesses focus on producing blog posts, infographics, and video content.
The mediums you use to reach your audience should be chosen based on your target demographic and your available resources.
If your ideal customers prefer high-quality explainer videos, it may not be possible to include them in your budget. You’ll need to consider other tactics to reach your target audience.
Other ways to distribute and promote your content marketing include where and how you distribute it, as well as how and where you market it.
Email is one of the most effective forms of communication for acquiring customers. With an ROI of $42 for every $1 spent on email, it’s easy to see why it’s such an attractive option for businesses.
Paid acquisition can be tough to come by, so this is a great accomplishment.
59% of businesses say that email is their most successful marketing tactic.
Email marketing involves building a landing page or sign-up form on your site, and then driving traffic there. Once you have some contacts, you can develop an email marketing strategy to send them valuable, informative content that positions you as an authority.
If you want to take it a step further, you can send them customized, automatic emails that are tailored to their interactions with you.
Email is a great way to generate leads because it is so effective. It is not difficult or complicated to get started.
Using email marketing, you can follow up with your subscribers, nurture them, and convert them into paying customers. A simple newsletter or automated email campaigns are easy ways to implement this.
If you hope to convert your prospects into paying customers, you can follow up with them using a newsletter or automated email campaigns. You can group your subscribers into different segments and send them targeted messages.
Use email marketing campaigns to stay in touch with people who visit your site from social media or search, but aren’t ready to buy.
You don’t have to write a long series of emails about a topic.
Automation tools or autoresponders are web-based apps that help you automatically send emails to your prospects and customers. Imagine if you had to manually send out a thank you email to everyone who signs up for your email newsletter.
That’s a lot of hours wasted on unproductive work.
Autoresponders are handy for following up with your prospects.
Whenever someone subscribes to our email list, their information is automatically sent to our auto-responder, which sends them an email welcoming them to the list.
The most important tip for abandoned cart emails is to automatically follow up with anyone who leaves halfway through checking out.
Email List Segmentation
Email list segmentation allows you to personalize and target your emails. This helps you avoid sending out generic, irrelevant messages to potential customers.
This approach of email list segmentation will help you get 26% higher open rates than if you were to mass email your entire list.
You can create different email lists for your recent blog visitors, or those who have signed up to try your free trial. This will help you to send more relevant content to each list, and increase your chance of converting them.
You can segment your subscriber list into groups based on whether they visited your site in the last week, or whether they have subscribed to your free trial. This lets you keep these contacts out of any emails that wouldn’t be relevant to them, such as promotions.
Both organic posts and paid advertisements are great ways to promote your software. By combining both, you can cast a wider net and gain more followers.
Organic posting on social media platforms can help you build a following and create relationships with potential and current customers. Paid ads can help increase your reach and target new audiences.
The process of social media marketing involves using paid and organic posts to build an audience on one of many social platforms. The most popular social media platforms are Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube. By creating content that is interesting and engaging, you can attract followers to your page which can then be converted into customers or clients.
There are more than 3.48 billion social media users worldwide. This makes it one of the most effective marketing methods to scale.
Social media marketing has a very low barrier to entry. You can create a business Instagram profile today for free. This makes it a very affordable channel.
Social Media is a great way to connect with customers, and it’s one of the first steps you should take when launching a new startup.
Squarespace has over 201,000 followers on Instagram. That’s pretty impressive!
They have achieved this through a mixture of advertising, influencer outreach, and constant, high-quality content creation.
In their latest campaign, Squarespace partnered with photographers to feature beautiful shots of their work. By showcasing the photographer’s website made with Squarespace, they were able to reach a wider audience and continue to produce high-quality content.
Simply posting on your social media accounts is not enough. You need a plan for reaching your target audience.
Learn from Successful Competitors
The “biggest cheat codes” for social media are to look at what your competitors are doing.
If you’re aware of your direct competitors, take a look at their social media pages and analyze their content. This can give you some great insights into what’s working well for them.
What can you learn from your most successful competitors on social media? Take a look at the types of posts that get the most engagement and see if you can identify any patterns. Is there a particular tone of voice or style of writing that seems to resonate with their audience?
How are they positioning themselves in the market? Use what you learn to improve your own social media strategy.
To be seen on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., you can’t just create a profile, post some images and expect people to find you. Your company’s Facebook page has seen a 52% drop in its organic reach in 2016 and has only continued to decrease.
Influencer marketing is an effective way to reach your audience.
The concept of influencer marketing is where you approach influential people and ask them to mention your product. Companies typically do this by approaching them and offering them money in exchange for mentioning their product.
The cost of a sponsored post on Instagram by a celebrity like Selena Gomez is astronomical.
That’s certainly not a feasible strategy if you’re just starting out. The target audience of influential bloggers is too wide, so you end up wasting a lot of money on people who aren’t interested.
Micro-influencers are the most effective and budget-friendly way to increase engagement.
Forget about reaching out to big celebrities like The Rock, Ronaldo, and Grande. Instead, focus on smaller influencers, developers, and tech experts.
Wix sponsors Andy J. Pizza, a popular podcaster with 13.8k followers on Twitch. This is a great way to get your brand in front of a large, engaged audience.
Because the host is so likable, some callers choose to go with Wix.
Smaller social media personalities can have more genuine relationships with their followers than larger celebrities.
To locate your most influential followers, you can search for them on Twitter directly, or you can use a free third-party service like BuzzSumo, which will help you find the most influential people in your industry.
Let’s say you only want to target users who are actively using Twitter AND also have an Instagram account. This can be accomplished by selecting the “Has an Account” and “Has an Active” options.
When searching, try using a search term that is related to your target demographic. It doesn’t have to be a perfect match, it can be related concepts or products.
If your software is a visualization plugin for Google analytics, then search for “Google Analytics”.
After you’ve run a search, make sure to sort by “reply ratio” to see which of the results are more likely to reply to your outreach efforts. This can help you focus on the most responsive people.
What is SaaS marketing? If you’re looking to generate leads for your business, then SaaS marketing is a great option to consider. By using the right tools and strategies, you can be successful in this type of marketing.