How to Develop a Viable SaaS Marketing Strategy for Your Startup

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The cost of starting a Software as a Service (SaaS) business is at an all-time low. As such, it’s becoming more challenging for startups to develop and execute an effective SaaS marketing strategy.

There are simply too many competitors. And the climb becomes more arduous if the battle is between funded and bootstrapped enterprises.

So, how does this affect your startup’s ability to develop an effective SaaS marketing strategy?
How can you, as a SaaS marketer, keep up with your competition and larger organizations in your industry?

And how can you make sure your startup’s B2B SaaS marketing is effective?

In this article, we’ll look at some of the methods that can help a SaaS business develop sustainably – without breaking the bank.


What is SaaS marketing?


SaaS marketing is the adaptation of the marketing communications (marcomms) approach to promote the sale of cloud-based software products and services.

Marketing efforts are a fundamental topic covered in MBA programs worldwide. And it is widely regarded as an essential aspect of business practice.

Understanding the unique requirements of this type of business service is critical to the success of SaaS businesses.

SaaS marketing refers to the widely accepted basic marketing ideas that existed long before the Internet brought us digital marketing. Fundamentally, this entails a multi-channel game plan with an integrated approach.


SaaS Marketing Today


Everyone seems to be creating a B2B SaaS company these days. You only need an idea and the capacity to make it a reality.

Even scaling to a $1 million annual run rate or being purchased by an industry titan isn’t as nigh-impossible as it once was.

While getting started is simple enough, developing a successful SaaS marketing plan is anything but. This is due to:

  • Customers want service and assistance to be available immediately and 24 hours a day, seven days a week
  • People can compare prices from a variety of vendors to find the most incredible offer.
  • SaaS customers expect more for less cost
  • Consumer demands are rapidly evolving
  • The cost of commercial advertising is increasing at an alarming rate.

Before throwing your hands up in frustration, keep in mind that this surge in B2B SaaS startup numbers has a significant positive for your company.

People have grown accustomed to the subscription-based business model and are willing to pay for software that improves or simplifies their lives. As customers, we don’t think long and hard about turning over our credit cards to subscribe for services online if the firm appears legitimate, trustworthy, and offers a service we need or desire.

One of the crucial methods you can take to make your SaaS marketing plan successful is to build a credible, compelling, and appealing brand around your firm. This is particularly essential in the B2B world.

In recent years, developing an effective SaaS marketing strategy for your firm has gotten more complicated. One of the reasons for this is due to SaaS oversaturation.

Fortunately, there are strategies you can follow to help mitigate these obstacles and accomplish growth.


SaaS Marketing Factors


The most important aspects of a good SaaS marketing plan are:


1. Customer Acquisition


You’ve created a fantastic product and defined your market position. But how can you locate consumers at a minimal cost to keep your business growing at a healthy pace?

Advertising is becoming increasingly costly. Paid advertising isn’t even an option for many firms as a marketing approach.

Spending $50,000 or more on trade expos, social media, and Adwords is common for enterprise organizations. After all, budget isn’t a concern when they choose to pay for lead-generating activities as part of their acquisition strategy.

A startup just cannot compete with that. And some of the sponsored channels provide only average results at best anyway.

Second, if you rely on paid marketing for lead generation and offer a free trial (as most companies do these days), you’ll be fighting free trial drop-offs all the time.

Your acquisition costs will rise with every amount of growth marketing and human engagement your team requires to attempt and onboard each new user, based on your LTV to CAC ratio. Advertising makes no sense if your SaaS conversion rate after the trial period is merely a tiny percentage.

SaaS marketing does not have to be expensive, however. Focusing your marketing strategy on items that help you establish traction and expand sustainably can be more advantageous in the long run.

These could include the following:

  • Increasing your brand’s visibility
  • Improve your website’s SEO to boost organic traffic
  • Concentrating on the creation and delivery of content
  • Subscribers can earn money by referring others
  • Marketing through affiliates or partnerships with more established businesses

If you’re not confident in your SaaS marketing approach, it’s time to go back to the drawing board.

And whatever technique you choose, it needs to be evaluated and optimized. This way, you’re ensuring the cost you’re spending will translate into your growth and profit of your company.


2. Retention


Getting one new potential customer for your startup can cost five to 10 times more than retaining an existing one. The potential for B2B marketing practices based on current clients is enormous.

And you’ll be surprised at the number of firms that overlook this in their rush to get more dazzling new members.

American companies alone lose roughly $136 billion annually due to churn that could have been avoided. This occurs when businesses fail to prioritize connecting with their consumers, making them feel appreciated, and resolving any issues that may cause them to defect to the competition.

Focusing on product marketing to your present consumers can be incredibly beneficial. Customers who have been dormant in your system might be reactivated to help you generate income.

Retention should be a top priority in your SaaS marketing plan, especially since it doesn’t require any money from your marketing budget. Time, creativity, and genuine concern for your readers can go a long way.


3. Branding


As a result of the B2C marketing playbook, more B2B firms begin to think about their branding.

Treating your company as a brand rather than just a supplier of goods or services might open up a whole new universe of marketing opportunities for your startup.

Of course, this is something that may cost you money to establish and build at first. But it will perform a lot of heavy lifting for you in terms of customer acquisition and referrals in the long run.

  • Developing a polished, recognizable brand image
  • A website with excellent UI/UX
  • And publishing constant on-brand content

All of these can help raise brand awareness and exposure in your market. People would remember you and pass the message about your firm if you have a strong brand.

As part of a startup SaaS marketing strategy, features are no longer sufficient.

Your SaaS content marketing, design, copywriting, and personality must all be consistent across the board. What’s more, they should be benefit-driven to reach and retain your targeted audiences and motivate them to interact with you.

A brand is something you have control over. It’s something you can build on and grow with.

It’s one of the most effective marketing campaign strategies a startup can do and your strongest defense against competitors. Leverage it to the fullest.


4. Content


If you’re having trouble coming up with ideas for content, listening to your customers can help.

  • Conduct a poll
  • Interview them and provide incentives
  • and monitor their praises and pain points on social media

Creating content centered on these issues can assist your firm in developing valuable and relevant content resources that drive signups.

Moreover, partnering with well-known companies, guest writing, and promoting content sharing can help you attract more customers.

Content is an essential aspect of promoting your firm, as time-consuming and tiresome as it may seem. In the online world, writing establishes your authority and broadens your awareness.

You might as well be invisible if you don’t have it.


5. Customer satisfaction


Nobody sells your company better than a satisfied customer. Positive customer experiences are critical to a company’s success.

More referrals and traffic come through word of mouth. Free publicity for your business is really what this is all about.

Focusing on how you can delight and excite your SaaS clients should be a big part of your behavioral marketing strategy.

Do some light surveillance of your competitors by reading their evaluations on forums or social media, in addition to listening to the typical issues that show up in your own startup support logs.

Do their customers have anything nice to say? Is there a problem with their support? Is your marketing team inept? Is it possible to have a website with poor navigation and unclear messaging?

You may use the vulnerabilities of your opponents to your advantage. By paying attention to frequent customer issues, you can improve your users’ experience and provide them with the greatest possible journey with your firm. Your consumers should be enthusiastic about working with you from the initial contact to onboarding and retention.


6. Make the most of social media’s potential


Some tools allow you to plan, generate, assign, and schedule content for various social media platforms. A social media calendar assists you in keeping all of your social media marketing operations on track and on schedule.

However, don’t publish everywhere. Instead, concentrate on the social media channels that are appropriate for your specific service.

The old adage of not putting all of your eggs in one basket doesn’t apply to social networking. Casting your resources thin across multiple platforms will cost you money.

To find leads, limit yourself to the most important social media channels and join existing conversations. Switching to an email subscription must be your ultimate goal.

Participate in Quora, topical forums, and social media groups to generate interest in your product. Q&A sites and forums, and blog comments can build traffic over time if you provide helpful replies.

Don’t feel compelled to advertise yourself either. Instead, let your profile links do the talking.

You could utilize a signup form that spreads like wildfire. This entails convincing folks to register for a free trial. By boosting word of mouth, this strategy has massively increased signups for some SaaS organizations.

Answers to the following points should be on your checklist before launching a SaaS product:

  • What is the user’s path to my product?
  • How do I generate interest?
  • Do I have a specific target user segment in mind?
  • What is the most cost-effective way to gain initial traffic? Is it possible for me to borrow traffic?


7. Involve your team


Your entire workforce can contribute to your marketing strategy.

All of your internal staff, including SaaS sales, product development, and support, should be in touch with your product’s end customers. This could help build better experiences, discover and fix problems, and produce new ideas.

Because marketers are generally the ones that are the furthest removed from customers, active strategy brainstorming with your complete team may be quite beneficial. It could shed light on new techniques that’ll eventually help your end goals.


Takeaways to help you develop a good SaaS marketing strategy


In today’s online environment, developing an effective SaaS marketing plan can seem daunting. It’s not for the faint of heart because it’s crowded, competitive, and fast-paced.

With advertising rates on the finest channels becoming prohibitively expensive for many businesses, it’s time to get creative and leverage your startup’s distinctiveness to expand your business.

Your marketing strategy should include an emphasis on customer experience, content, and branding.

For your startup, you’ll need a marketing leader. You don’t have time to perform your own marketing as an entrepreneur, thus you need to professionalize and grow your marketing function.

Do you require the services of a full-time executive? Could a Fractional CMO help you get up and running quickly and with less risk? These are just some things to think about.
Are you ready to begin? We can help boost your marketing and get you started in the proper path quickly as a B2B SaaS marketing agency. To get started, please contact us.

Not quite ready, but eager to learn more? Connect with us on LinkedIn to stay up to date on the latest SaaS marketing news and tools.

And for SaaS marketing strategy, visit our blog here.

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Ken Moo