Some examples of great SaaS marketing strategies include improving customer service, addressing the specific needs of your target audience, and offering relevant content to consumers. In addition to these, it also helps if you seek help from reputable review sites, leverage paid advertising, and practice upselling and cross-selling.
More and more companies are turning to SaaS to power their operations. So, it comes as no surprise that there are more developers who will try to meet the demand of consumers. This makes it difficult to make your product stand out from the rest of the solutions on the market. In this article, we will be helping you out by providing you with a few SaaS marketing strategies that you can apply to rake in more clients. From boosting your relationship with customers in need of your software solutions to building your brand’s reputation, we have compiled all the tips you need to improve the sales of your SaaS products.
A ReserachandMarkets.com report has predicted that the annual cloud spending will grow at a CAGR of 21.9% by the end of 2021, a big jump from $180 billion in 2018. Things aren’t slowing down in the public cloud services market, which is seen to expand to $160 billion. More interestingly, there are a number of cloud market trends that you should look out for given these market developments. That’s a huge market for you as a B2B vendor, but it also means more competition is heading your way. In the meantime, the pressure is on to grow your customer base before funding runs dry. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel though; in this article, we gathered ten best SaaS marketing strategies to help your software succeed.
Kissmetrics calls it the “only SaaS sales strategy you really need.” And why not? When every software vendor brags about having the best features, the one with exceptional customer service (the other “S” in SaaS, in case you’ve forgotten) wins the game as richer customer experience has been found to positively impact corporate income.
Having an exceptional customer service is simple: put your customers’ welfare above all. However, implementing this mantra is another matter when the company lacks solid customer service training for its employees.
Here are a few tips on how to achieve awesome customer support:
Even before you sell, your software should address a specific scenario so customers will love your product. Pioneering vendors like SalesForce (cloud CRM) and QuickBooks (cloud accounting) have the advantage of offering a unique feature ahead of the competition, but even latecomers can find a value proposition that makes them stand out. Trello, for instance, came into the project management game in 2011, but instead of competing head-on with more robust software, it focuses on movable boards–a novel feature at the time of the software’s launch–to organize things. By narrowing down its value proposition to a useful feature, Trello wins new customers who are inconvenienced by the folder-view formats of earlier project management solutions.
84% of people trust online reviews as much as friends, a Local Consumer Survey has revealed. It’s not hard to imagine these buyers start their product discovery research in review sites, third-party websites that collate and review various products by category. Instead of visiting numerous sites, buyers can shortlist their preference on a review site by having all competing products in one location and compare them feature by feature.
If you want to take advantage of review sites, make sure to engage them by sending the sites’ editorial team your software specifications and value proposition. This ensures all your product advantages are mentioned. Likewise, you can opt for the review sites’ paid marketing tools. For example, here at FinancesOnline.com, you can benefit from a detailed review, or highlight your product with a quality certificate to increase your lead generation. These tools can be that critical push that can give you the advantage right at the moment when buyers, who are browsing the review site, are looking at your software along with ten other competitors.
Regardless of which review platform you choose it’s important to keep in mind that you’re looking to increase your exposure, so the best approach is almost always to get your review listed on all popular SaaS review platforms. Here’s what you should consider:
Most Popular SaaS Review Platforms
Despite all the technological innovations in digital marketing, trends in content marketing prove that it is here to stay. That’s because B2B buyers aren’t just looking for your product today; they’re searching for content that informs and educates them. For B2B marketers like you, that means publishing content related to your product and not about your software. By creating thoughtful content replete with useful tips, advice, and information, you can engage customers across your social media networks, as well as project your expertise. Both these factors increase your social proof, which according to a CrazyEgg article, increases your conversion rate. Here are some topic suggestions from which you can create white papers, ebooks, webinars, articles, and podcasts:
Building user trust on your website is critical to generating new leads. It’s even more critical for startups and less-known vendors. When customers land on your page, will they believe you? You have four main goals to project immediate trustworthiness, namely: your business is legitimate; you meet the strictest professional standards; you’re engaging, and you empathize with customers.
One quick way to earn user trust is to borrow one: by displaying trust marks given by authoritative bodies. It has been established that adding visual clue like trust seals suggests trustworthiness to site visitors. This serves to reinforce perceived security of the site and not necessarily actual technical security. Therefore, trust seals can make or break a sale.
Popular trust seals such as Norton and BBB rank high in trust value and are useful for broad-based businesses. The Baymard study ranks trust seals as follows:
For a B2B company, you can also add a specialist trust mark like the Verified Quality Seal that we offer here at FinancesOnline.com. This seal is unique in a way because, unlike most trust marks that tell visitors the site is secure, the Verified Quality Seal tells them that the product meets specific quality standards and the vendor is reliable. It also focuses specifically on the B2B and SaaS industry and market research shows it can increases sales by as much as 14% for a vendor.
Here are some more effective ways to increase user trust in your website:
There’s an untapped goldmine right under your nose. How many clients, in fact, have you migrated to the most profitable plan for you or subscribed to all your add-ons or upgrades? How many prospects, indeed, have been lingering too long in your free trial list? It’s time to move them to the next plan that will earn you more profits.
If it’s impractical to revisit your client from time to time for an upsell or cross-sell, one effective way is to conduct a direct email marketing campaign to your existing mailing list. The idea is to funnel each prospect towards the highest package price appropriate to their needs, one gradual step at a time.
Here are some proven email marketing tips:
Seth Godin once said that companies that complain their market niche is too small might have got it wrong: they’re not offering more value to maximize their niche. Perhaps it’s because many companies fail to identify their ideal customer that they fail to know more of their needs. Lincoln Murphy of SixteenVentures advised that you define your ideal customer, customers who see the immediate value of your software. You can start by “imagining” this customer with leading questions during your marketing brainstorming:
However, you should go beyond imagining the ideal customer and sort through your customer raw data. Go over your CRM data, such as feedback, queries, social mentions, user reviews, and, if available, survey results. Look for behavioral patterns or recurring characteristics that can help you craft a more realistic ideal customer.
Paid advertising shouldn’t be limited to promoting a product; rather, advertising works great when you want to kickstart a content campaign for new leads. Customers today want engagement, not a hard sell. By using your content as advertising fodder, you get a higher chance of attracting new leads, for instance, subscribers who aren’t sold yet to your software but want to download your ebook.
When it comes to paid advertising strategies, SEM (search engine marketing) tops the list, based on a Content Marketing Institute’s report. SEM involves bidding for keywords to have your ad posted in search results. The higher the keyword value, the higher the bid price. For B2B marketing, it’s best to focus on long-tail keywords, longer but more specific phrases that prospects are typing in the search field. For example, instead of bidding for a general keyword like “CRM,” bid for “CRM for small business,” which lets you narrow down the target to your specific audience. There are tons of free keyword search tools, such as Google Keyword Planner, Competitor Source Code, and Ubersuggest.
Thought leadership has become a top priority among marketers, according to a Forbes article, as companies realize that original content and research insights can open doors to new sales or resales. Your software, indeed, can sell itself by riding on the influence of your opinion. Here are ways how thought leadership can benefit your marketing:
In the meantime, here are the places where to promote and project your expertise and thought leadership:
With the forecast expansion of the SaaS covering the whole world, so it makes sense that to tap this huge pie you need to grow your international team. The U.S. and Western Europe still lead the market, while the Asia-Pacific region is host to growth-intensive emerging markets, such as China, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Thailand.
Although it’s ideal to set up local offices in these countries to get closer to the market, the overheads may be prohibitive. A good option is to do follow the ZenDesk strategy: they hired marketers in their San Francisco headquarters, who speak the language, understand the cultural nuances, and can follow local news the better to connect to foreign prospects. Build an international team right within your national office.
The SaaS market cannot be more exciting than it is today when businesses large and small are convinced of the power and convenience of the cloud. These ten SaaS marketing strategies can help you to do your job as a B2B marketer, to convince buyers to choose you.
As an entrepreneur, you know full well that strategies won’t implement themselves. So, before you start rolling out the SaaS marketing tactics we’ve listed above, let us first discuss building your marketing team.
Marketing is multi-faceted. It involves a slew of processes that require knowledge of customer engagement, lead management, content marketing, and social media management to name a few. As such, you should build a SaaS marketing team that comprises marketing experts who specialize in different fields. To help you get started, we have listed down some of the professionals that you should consider for your team:
FinancesOnline is available for free for all business professionals interested in an efficient way to find top-notch SaaS solutions. We are able to keep our service free of charge thanks to cooperation with some of the vendors, who are willing to pay us for traffic and sales opportunities provided by our website. Please note, that FinancesOnline lists all vendors, we’re not limited only to the ones that pay us, and all software providers have an equal opportunity to get featured in our rankings and comparisons, win awards, gather user reviews, all in our effort to give you reliable advice that will enable you to make well-informed purchase decisions.