13 BEST SaaS Produt Launch Strategies
Launching a software product in today’s hyper-competitive digital market can be difficult. With so many B2B startups emerging daily, you need to know how to stand out and communicate your message.
In this article, we’ll go over some important points to review during the pre-launch of your SaaS product. We’ll also cover 6 product launch strategies to set up your SaaS product and company for success.
How to Launch SaaS Products?
It’s no longer enough to sell your SaaS product through one or two channels, like Facebook or Google Ads. This holds true especially if you’re a bootstrapped firm.
If you want early traction, you need a strategy. It could involve outreach, social media involvement, and a credibility-building PR campaign.
Likewise, PR is evolving. It now includes ecosystems like community platforms, influencer marketing, and podcasting.
Recent B2B trends include funding a SaaS solution via crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter. Getting highlighted on industry sites like Producthunt also helps.
These channels are great for attracting attention, but not always for generating revenue. They don’t provide the cash injection most businesses need to develop. Hence, it’s best to look into other options.
Pre-launching a SaaS Product
In the SaaS market, proper planning is essential for success. When it comes to having a solution ready for market, there are several factors to consider. If necessary, a clear strategy will guide you in pivoting your initiatives.
So, how do you make a go-to-market checklist for a SaaS product? We’d recommend beginning here.
1. Understand your competitors
To develop a marketing plan for your business, you’ll need to do a comprehensive competitor analysis. You’ll be asked this question over and over again as a new product: “How does your product distinguish from its competitors?”
Certain tools like SEMrush and Ahrefs might help you find out how you can deliver an additional value compared to your competition. They generate particular data that could let you see what marketing channels are driving traffic to them, as well as their backlink sources and top landing pages. As a consequence, you’ll be able to design your marketing approach more successfully.
As an alternative, you can make a spreadsheet of firms or corporations offering a similar solution to yours and add them to the list. To have a good idea of your competitors’ marketing methods, look at their advertisements, websites, and other media to learn from them.
2. Prioritize value
Attempting to make a quick buck is a recipe for failure. Instead of focusing on the bottom line, consider how your product will benefit the people who might purchase or utilize it. Aim to build brand values that will increase your target audience’s loyalty.
The value of a brand is what it stands for, not what it can do. Nike, for example, isn’t in the business of selling sports shoes. Rather, it promotes the virtues of determination and success via its brand. So, rather than presenting all your “special” features on the first page of your product’s landing page, focus on the values you are offering to customers.
So, how do you create value? Observe, respond, and keep in touch with your customers.
Don’t be disheartened by the low numbers. Remember that the better your product becomes, the more people will flock to it.
3. Build your Team
In the early phases of a small firm, the importance of a strong startup team cannot be overstated. As a result, you’ll want to pick your:
- First-time employees, including those who work remotely.
Usually, it’s practically impossible to hire full-time employees in the early phases of a startup because of the lack of funding. Outsourcing some jobs as you take off is a good idea. It’s one way to find suitable employees as your business expands.
4. Get a traction
If you want to reach new consumers, you’ll need a marketing strategy. There are several ways to do so, from attending local events to blogging and online campaigns to social media ads, and more.
Some strategies are more likely to be effective than others, depending on the kind of products or services you’re launching. If your SaaS company is geared at people who need web-based services, it’s difficult to be profitable promoting in the local paper. Social media marketing and digital advertising will certainly be more effective.
Use a variety of marketing techniques to evaluate which ones work best over time and which ones don’t. Create a budget, study, design a strategy depending on your corporate objectives, then concentrate on the strategies that deliver you the most purchasing consumers. Knowing your Lifetime Value (LTV) and Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) will help you find the best methods to reach new customers.
5. Tell a brand story
After knowing your competitive advantage, you need a captivating brand story that appeals to your customer’s emotions. You can use this brand story in presentations, on your site, or through visuals.
Hubspot is an excellent example of this. The company started when its founders noticed that customers are no longer pulled in by interruptive bids. So they focus on the idea that helping people with their problems would attract clients.
Hubspot is among the first companies that focused on inbound marketing. What makes the company’s brand story so compelling is that anyone can achieve in any space as long you pay attention to customer behavior.
It’s why behavioral marketing is so effective. We’ve extensively covered that topic here.
6. Beta testing
Beta testing can reveal a lot about your post-launch performance. There is a wealth of knowledge about beta testing.
But unless it can be successfully replicated over and over, you may be dealing with a biased sample.
Moreover, beta testers should be market representatives, not hand-picked cheerleaders. Always remember that criticisms are your direction towards growth.
Receiving this constructive feedback early increases your launch’s success. Without it, you’re stumbling in the dark and are positioning yourself for a nasty drop.
7. Set your KPIs
Measuring success is crucial for any SaaS startup along with strategizing what they can do to stay afloat. Various indicators can help in this regard and increase a startup’s revenue. Usually, up to 10 metrics are enough to assess and improve business performance. But they must be chosen and combined wisely.
Indicators that are irrelevant to your business’ performance may lead you astray.
Here’s how to set up KPIs quickly.
- Explain what purpose your product serves. If your product directly creates revenue, then revenue is your main indicator. Analyze your product before focusing on KPIs.
- Set SMART goals: Specific – Measurable – Achievable – Time-bound
- Every sector and business strategy has preferred KPIs. For example, a SaaS founder’s KPIs will be very different from an eCommerce firm owner’s.
- Incorporate leading and lagging indicators. Leading indicators tell you how probable your product is to achieve its aim, whereas lagging indicators tell you what happened thereafter.
A lot goes into choosing KPIs for SaaS revenue, marketing, and growth, data. While there are dozens of indicators to consider, there are a few key universal metrics that can help you assess your SaaS startup’s performance. They won’t provide you with a complete picture of your business, but they’ll help you get started.
SaaS Product Launch Strategies
Once you understand the operational environment, you’re ready to start acquiring clients.
Setting goals and tracking progress are critical. At this point, you need to check your brand positioning strategy. Then adjust your branding and messaging based on your collected data.
The marketing mix includes SaaS sales, advertising, pricing, promotion, and more. Social networking and performance marketing are also significant tools for SaaS businesses.
Here are five ways to sell your B2B product using current PR and marketing trends:
1. Release your press release via social media
With over 3 billion users, social media is now part of every marketing strategy.
According to a survey, over two-thirds of journalists use Twitter to identify stories.
Furthermore, approximately three-quarters use the platform for research. Only 14% of those journalists will visit a company blog.
Don’t let your press releases sit on your website. Ask for feedback from journalists who may be interested in the product. You may do this both on Twitter and on industry-related websites.
Ask questions on social media to initiate conversations with your target population. Social media dialogues engage your audience and, if they are interesting, may catch the attention of journalists too.
Below are other pointers to leverage on social media
- Begin with only a few popular social networking sites. This can help you understand your target demographic and how to engage them.
- A Facebook business page. Whatever your business, Facebook has a market for you. You may use incentives or run a contest to promote your product and generate leads.
- Create a Twitter account to communicate with relevant people. You can also use it to share news about your product, business, or industry.
- Create a LinkedIn company page and update it often. It’s an excellent source of B2B SaaS customers. With LinkedIn Pulse, you can create articles and share content with relevant groups. Most prospective customers use LinkedIn to research a company before buying.
2. Price appropriately
The cost of a product is an important consideration. If you don’t charge enough, you won’t be able to pay your bills. If you overcharge, you risk losing thousands of dollars in potential revenue. To avoid alienating clients or giving the impression that you can’t satisfy their demands, you must avoid overcharging.
So what are your options? Here, the use of tiered pricing plays a part. It may be particularly useful for SaAS firms to cater to different buyer personas’ wants and budgets.
Tiered pricing is a strategy used by companies to tailor the pricing of their products and services to different audiences. Your selling price per unit must fall inside a specific pricing range in this model. You advance to the next tier after filling out the previous one.
As an illustration, consider the following:
- It costs $300 to buy a single unit
- 2-to-five units: $250 each
- $240 each for 6-10 units
- 11-20 units: $230 per units
- 20 or more units: $220 each
You may reach a broader (and more diverse) consumer base by catering to a wider range of price points and demand rates by optimizing and varying your offering across the various segments.
3. Give early adopters a lifetime freemium deal
Due to the low entrance barrier, a freemium version can be a quick way to drive trial for a new service. It can also increase brand awareness and expand your reach organically.
In reality, a freemium model can help speed up profit growth and recurring revenue. So it’s no surprise that freemium has become a popular marketing strategy for Web 2.0 enterprises.
4. Automated Emails
Automated onboarding is a must for SaaS companies. Few firms or users will join in without fully knowing your product’s benefits.
While you can experiment, your onboarding process must at least include:
- Tutorials and product tours
- A demo request option
- Lifecycle emails
5. Demonstrating your product to prospects
Highlighting product features won’t always influence new prospects. With a tailored demo, your prospective customer will better understand what you can do.
You can also use it to create a self-guided product experience to attract early adopters.
Customer-centric demos set them apart from other launch-phase marketing and promotional materials. Upselling success begins with putting your consumers first.
Customization shows clients you understand their business and its challenges. Instead of making empty promises, show clients how your product works in practice.
Seeing how your solution can solve their problems increases conversion rates.
6. People need a reason to discuss and spread the message
Customers need ‘talk triggers.’ These could be remarkable experiences that will push them to tell their stories and do your PR for you.
At Doubletree Hotels, for example, guests receive a cookie upon arrival. According to a study, 34% of Doubletree guests mentioned the cookie within 60 days.
A simple referral scheme grew Dropbox’s user base from 100,000 to over 4 million in a little over a year. Instead of a cookie, they gave anyone who referred a friend 500MB of free space. It works in B2B as well as B2C.
Differentiation is critical. Yet many firms overlook the importance of adding value to consumers. It’s all about starting dialogues and encouraging others to take part. It also entails welcoming newcomers with a rare opportunity.
After completing the stages mentioned above, you are ready to launch your product.
Note though that what worked during pre-launch may not work well once you have real clients. Prepare your team for that.
During your launch, be transparent about your intentions and progress. You may record dates and key milestones on an office wall. This helps everyone understand the project’s development.
Immediately after launch, gather as much input as possible. Be ready to make significant improvements.
Build agile processes and assign tasks ahead of time. Despite the flaws, you must be adaptable and suggest the ideal consumer experience.
Your product will always have flaws and missing functionality upon launch. The idea is to establish a system that allows users to offer you feedback.
It must also allow you to swiftly aggregate, analyze, and act on it. Contact information (email, phone, etc.) should be visible on every page.
Also, invite individuals to send queries and feedback to your email instead of putting them on your social media pages.Most startups open too many communication channels, making it tough to manage them all. You can’t be everywhere at once while starting a SaaS business.
In conclusion, starting a project in a highly competitive sector like SaaS has never been easy.
But it isn’t impossible either. Just look at the successful SaaS startups today. They may be operating in a competitive market and yet they still remain profitable.
For more SaaS insights and strategies, visit our blog here.