9+ Crucial Steps To Develop a SaaS Content Marketing Strategy
A lot of marketers wonder how they should approach SaaS content marketing. There are many different tactics to try, and it can be difficult to know which one will work best for your business.
We want to help you with the decision-making process by providing a comprehensive guide about developing a SaaS content marketing strategy that will attract more people who will subscribe to your software.
This guide will present how-to steps that teach solid SaaS content marketing principles for SaaS businesses so you can close deals with prospective customers faster and easier.
Our goal is to help you develop a long-term SaaS content marketing strategy that provides valuable content to your readers, and in return, generates more conversions and sales!
Determine the Goals of your
SaaS Content Marketing Strategy
A content marketing strategy has specific goals, and you have to know what they are before moving on. It goes without saying that you must have an end goal in mind.
Here is a list of content-specific objectives that your strategists should consider as part of their overarching goal:
- Increase brand awareness
- Improve customer loyalty
- Improve the presence in search engines
- Increase web traffic for conversion purposes (e.g., leads)
- Build relationships with influencers
- Engage prospects with interactive media
- Deliverables such as blogs or eBooks
- Develop new products/services
- Promote events
- Create an authority figure in your industry
- Communicate company culture
- Provide information about job openings at your company
- Encourage user participation through social media channels
Knowing the objective of your strategy is crucial to the direction and decisions that you’ll be making along the way. Implementing this isn’t just about dishing out arbitrary types of content in your website, social media, or any other form of channel.
It’s about you, bringing something valuable to your readers and customers, through content creation.
Content that educates, entertains, and brings information tends to have a great impact on people who are going down your sales funnel. It is also essential for retaining paying customers.
Why Do You Need a Strategy
for your SaaS Content Marketing?
The SaaS industry was already expected to grow larger and larger back in 2018, according to SaaS growth rate statistics.
With the recent pandemic, many businesses, both great and small, are forced to work remotely. So, the use and demand for SaaS have grown exponentially. And this situation can benefit your SaaS company a lot.
People are constantly on the lookout for apps and software tools that will help them make their jobs easier, integrate these tools together, and automate any routine work.
With that growth comes fiercer competition. However, having a clear and definitive content strategy is one way for you to stand out amongst your competitors.
Writing a strategy for SaaS content marketing is imperative and starts with an assessment of the current situation.
Now, here are some questions to consider:
- What problems does your company solve?
- Who is your audience, what do they want or need?
- Do you have any direct competitors in this space?
- How can you beat them at their own game by providing better content than they do?
- Where/how will people find out about you and who’ll be responsible for that promotion aspect – on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn?
- Or through SEO work such as keyword research and link building campaigns on blogs/news outlets relevant to your industry niche?
What problems does your company solve?
There are many niches in the SaaS industry, but generally, many of these SaaS companies are trying to solve the same problems because they offer related products and services.
For example, if you have a customer relationship management (CRM) software that is made for small businesses with fewer than 250 employees, then it will likely be competing against other CRM tools like Salesforce or Zoho.
If you’re looking to beat them in their game, you better understand three things:
- What your customers want or need.
- The different stages of the customer journey.
- The problems you fix.
Determine Your Target Audience
for your SaaS Content Marketing
When creating a content strategy, you first have to ask: who are you producing the content for?
Your audience will greatly influence the type of content you will be producing, and the channel or form of media where it will be presented.
If you’re targeting a specific audience, see if you can use their worldview to create content that is relevant and relatable for them.
Avoid the trap of focusing your strategy on a fictitious buyer persona or avatar. A better way of understanding your customer base is to use real persons for example, with real wants and needs. If possible, it’s best to interact with your customer base.
The more details you provide about your readers will help you understand how you can serve them better with high-quality information.
Here are some good examples of target audience:
Marketers, entrepreneurs, a group of developers, startups, small business owners, or their team.
Say, you’re running a B2B business model for your SaaS company, then you’ll have plenty of opportunities to target C-level executives.
As a SaaS marketer or if you’re a SaaS sales rep, you better be aware that the way you communicate to them through your blog post will be vastly different compared to how you would publish a blog post for normal people or a B2C business model. The tone, the choice of words, and the styles will all be different.
The bigger point is, each niche and company has its own ideal audience, which can vary depending on the industry and business model.
But it usually falls into one of these four buckets:
- Prospects or potential customers
- Existing customers with potential upgrades
Remember to research the demographic you’re going for. Dive into their perspective. The better you know them, the value and quality of your content will improve.
Develop a Content Strategy
After you’ve determined who your audience is, it’s time to decide what type of content you’ll be making.
One of the first things to do is, try to think about what you want people to know, learn, or feel after they’ve engaged with your content.
We call this an “end goal”.
Your end goals will be different depending on whether you’re creating content for prospects/prospective customers; existing customers with potential upgrades; influencers; partners.
If your objective is simply lead generation and sales, then a blog post that talks about how to solve customer problems might work best.
Blogging is still the most popular content marketing strategy as it’s one of the easiest ways for companies, especially for a SaaS startup, and small companies, to share their expertise and insights related to industry-specific topics.
Here are some statistics of content marketing strategies of SaaS companies courtesy of DevSquad.
Therefore, blogs are a good place to start when developing your SaaS company’s content marketing campaign.
You can write posts that will address common questions or problems faced by potential customers — anything from “What do I need in order to create an account?” to “How should I manage my project team?”.
And don’t forget about best practices like making sure you’re using SEO optimization tactics (like tags) so readers can find your blog easily through search engines.
But if you’re trying to drive more traffic through SEO-focused articles (to increase organic search rankings), it would make sense to choose your keywords carefully because these are usually longer pieces than blog posts and require in-depth research and data gathering.
If your end goal is to educate your readers, content like a free ebook on your landing page or a series of case studies of past clients might be a great idea as it establishes you as an expert in your industry, and gets people to engage with you about your product.
Here are some other content ideas you might want to try:
- A podcast that talks about the story and idea behind your product, how it solves people’s problems in a given type of industry, etc.
- A top 10 list of best practices of other people who are using your product to do their work more efficiently.
- An infographic on a key topic showing relevant information with specific numbers from research studies.
- A video tutorial series where you teach your customer base how to do something valuable they couldn’t learn anywhere else.
Each type of content has an appeal to them. People will very likely share engaging content with their friends on social media, given that you are providing them with high-quality content.
A podcast might be more engaging to listeners and seems like a better way for them to get the information they need.
A “top 10 list” appeals visually, while an infographic will help people understand the data you’re presenting much easier since it’s in graphic form.
A video tutorial series is another great idea because this type of content can quickly teach your target audience how to do something valuable through a simple walkthrough or demonstration that would otherwise take too much time or money if they were paying someone else to do it for them.
You can also experiment with interactive content such as quizzes, polls and surveys, and webinars which will also help you get to know your customers more or initiate an interaction with them whether it’s through an interactive infographic or a demo of your software.
Content Marketing Institute conducted a survey of what benefits the marketers saw when they used interactive content:
What Topics Are You Going to Cover?
The topic that you’ll be covering in your content will depend on the focus of your SaaS business and what you want to accomplish.
If your product is SEO software, you may want to write a detailed how-to guide about site auditing for beginners.
If it’s a fitness app, you may want to write about how to work out properly and safely at home without any equipment for those who regularly come to the gym.
If your end goal is to get more conversions and signups, focus on writing blog posts that teach tech teams valuable lessons or skills within your industry or software in an easy-to-read way, like how to automate routine operations.
If your end goal is to increase brand awareness, try producing content like infographics that are visually appealing and helpful for the average joes and janes. This can make your SaaS brand easier to remember.
These types of graphics often go viral as well because they can be shared easily across social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.
Simply put, the topics vary depending on what industry your company belongs in, what problems your software fixes, who your target audience is, and what type of content you can produce.
Another example is this blog post from Seamgen. From the title and the excerpt, it’s very clear who the blog post is written for (for mobile app developers), and what its objective is (help them build better apps).
Here’s a SaaS marketing strategy that you may want to go for if your end goal is to increase your sales:
Start with BOFU Content
According to an article on Forbes about prioritizing BOFU content, “You’re company doesn’t need to educate buyers“.
Meaning, most people with a high buyer intent are already aware of what his or her problems are. Such people are itching to find a SaaS solution to their problems, whether it be finding a better project management software, a CRM where they can automate emails, proposals, contracts, and invoices, or a more reliable accounting system.
Start with creating bottom-of-funnel content.
You can do this by targeting long-tail keywords like “project management software for doctors” or “accounting system for a small business”.
Next, use low-touch content to nurture leads.
Now, when people land on your website and start reading the blog posts you’ve published, they will be more likely to convert into customers if they know who is behind the product – this can come in various forms like a Founder’s Story video where you talk about how you created the company, a quick demo of your product, interviews with employees, testimonials from satisfied clients and so forth.
Success stories presented by rasa.io for their email marketing tool
This kind of marketing technique is called Content Marketing (or Inbound Marketing), which generates fresh customer prospects by providing useful information that would make them want to subscribe to your service rather than constantly relying on outbound advertising messages through TV ads or billboards.
The number one goal of this type of funnel content is to increase sales by driving them straight into your product pages or blog posts that sell.
You’ll want the customer’s experience on your website to be seamless and for their pain points and needs to be recognized quickly so they can find what it is they need without wasting time trying different products in an attempt to figure out which will work best for them.
A software demo by Spoke.app
Start with BOFU content, then move onto educational content like blogs and videos, followed by case studies and testimonials from people who have benefited from using your software/service before getting into something like influencer marketing campaigns.
This order should help decrease key metrics like cart abandonment rates as customers get closer to converting based on how well they understand your product and trust your brand.
Personally, I enjoy watching a tutorial or a step-by-step guide published by the people behind the software I’m using or consider subscribing to. As an existing customer, they’re doing a great job retaining me because of the value it provides in improving my work. And as a prospective customer, learning and understanding what problems a software solves make them more appealing and irresistible.
Create a Content Calendar
** A social media content calendar template by Hootsuite
Your plan should be customized according to your company’s needs and objectives, as each one is unique in nature.
Here are some examples that you can start with:
Regularly publish content on your blog, website, or social media accounts.
One article or blog post per week is a good start.
Or maybe three social media posts per week is the most ideal for your situation.
The bigger point is by scheduling when to publish your content in advance, you solidify your organization or brand as one that is reliable simply because of your consistency when reaching out to your customer base.
In return, this allows for more opportunities for your readers to interact and engage with your content and your product.
To get started, you may want to determine these things:
- What type of content are you going to create?
- What topic are you going to cover?
- When are you going to publish the content?
- Where will you publish the content?
- Who in your team is going to create the content?
There are many content calendar software and templates available on the internet as well. You may want to check them out and find what’s best for you to simplify this process.
How Will You Gain Traffic?
Okay. You know what type of content you want to publish. You’ve established the topics that you want to dive into. You’ve scheduled the day and time of publishing. But where do you publish it?
To reach the right audience for your SaaS content marketing strategy, you better know the right platforms where you can publish your content and some other ways on how you can gain traffic.
SEO + Organic Traffic
SEO is one of the most effective ways to drive organic traffic to your content. Make sure that you are following some of the basic SEO guidelines so you can gain traction in search engines.
Here are some tips:
Find relevant keywords to target.
Keywords still play an essential role in search engines. Do your keyword research to find the best fit for your content.
This is especially important if you’re publishing blog posts and articles on your website. Pay attention to the length and depth of your content. Make sure that you have the appropriate tags for your headings and subheadings.
Work towards gaining a backlink from other authoritative sites. The number of backlinks you have pointing to your content will also affect how high it ranks in search engine results pages. Make sure that you have outbound links to other relevant articles and websites out there. Don’t forget inbound links help as well.
Optimize the page’s URL, the post title, meta description, canonical link, and navigation.
All these tips help with improving the user experience which is an important metric that Google really keeps an eye on.
Emails and Newsletters
Up to this day, old-school marketing efforts like sending emails and notifications to people on your list is another reliable way to gain organic traffic. However, for this to work successfully, you need to have an existing list of people subscribed to your email newsletter.
Setup your social media accounts to share your content
Set up a social media page for your SaaS company, whether it be on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, or Pinterest. Or perhaps in all of them if appropriate.
Create a platform where you can post big and small updates about your product, and share content you think will resonate with people who like or follow your page. Be consistent with posting or updating your social accounts.
Leveraging social media is a great way to drive traffic and build your SaaS company’s following. Social media is a great platform to introduce your SaaS product to new audiences, reach your target market, and retain your existing customer base.
If possible, try responding to people who interact with your posts on social media through tweeting, commenting on relevant posts, and participating in important discussions.
How Will You Grow The Business?
The end goal of your content marketing strategy is to grow your business. The steps that we have discussed so far serve as a bridge for us to fully realize that goal.
Through the content we produce, we educate our readers about certain topics in our industry, we provide solutions to specific problems, we promote our brand, we get leads through email subscriptions, and so forth.
But what’s the point of all this content marketing if there are no conversions?
Our content marketing efforts are about turning readers into leads and ultimately converting them to paying customers. The end goal of our strategy is not only for people to consume compelling content; we want them to contact us, give us their email addresses, or register an account.
Plus, did you know that you can grow your SaaS business remotely?
Be clear that you have a SaaS product
Here are a few suggestions:
- Incorporate a call-to-action (CTA) in your blog posts can help increase your leads. Place CTA’s at the end of each post to help people learn more about your software product.
- Capture email addresses. Offer something of value in exchange for an email address. This could be a free guide, a mini-course, an eBook, a discount, a newsletter, or a trial period to your software.
- Provide testimonials from customers who use the product and show real-life stories on your website about how they solved their problems by using it.
- Incorporate social proof with case studies and success stories that demonstrate how people have benefited from using the software product offered by your company.
Follow-up with everyone
As soon as you can, follow up with everyone through any form of communication that is appropriate.
This helps people to remember your SaaS company. It also helps establish trust and a good relationship between you and people who are interested in your product or have already signed up.
A follow-up email from Flowlu
For example, sending emails consistently easily does the job.
Some suggestions are:
- Send weekly newsletters
- Send product updates when they are released
- Regularly offer freebies such as ebooks, courses, discounts, or free trial of your software if they have not made any purchases yet.
- Send a welcome message or an onboarding series for people who have just subscribed.
How do I know if my
SaaS content marketing strategy is working?
Creating content for your target audience is one-half of the journey. Measuring the success of your content marketing strategy is the other half.
There are lots of factors seen and unseen that contribute to the success or failure of any content marketing strategy. It is recommended that you plan ahead what metrics you should keep an eye on when you finally launch your campaign.
Content marketing strategies require reports so performance can be measured and accelerated. The key metrics that you should look out for — again — depends on your objective.
But here are some suggestions:
Organic traffic – how it affects your lead generation efforts
An increase in organic traffic is a good sign that your content is being visited and viewed by people.
Conversion rate – how many leads are converted to customers
If you’re focused on creating middle and bottom of funnel content, an increase in conversion rate is a great indicator that your content is delivering well.
Social media engagements and traffic
You should look out for increases in likes, shares, comments, retweets, and impressions as these indicators mean more people have seen or interacted with your posts which means your posts resonated with them. Keep track of the traffic that comes from your social media accounts as well.
Search engine traffic – how well you show up in search results.
The majority of the people browsing in search engines will only look at the top three results. Keep track of how your content is doing with this key metric.
A well-developed content will rank across lots of different keywords. An increase in keywords and rankings will almost always mean a good source of more organic traffic for your website. Watch out for keywords that you don’t want to rank for, though.
Backlink and Referring Domains
Backlinks are the essential way to tell search engines that you’re a valuable source of information. As for domains, they have more power over your rankings than page-specific backlinks do.
Refer to Google Analytics for metrics such as bounce rate, time spent on-site, and repeat visits to see how people are interacting with your content.
So don’t wait until the end of a campaign before looking at metrics; start monitoring them right away!
Content marketing is a long game for any industry. The same is true in the SaaS business. Each stage of the game is crucial. It’s going to be disappointing if you’ve invested so much time, effort, and energy in your content marketing efforts only to see the key metrics show less-than-average results.
This guide is to help you set the right foundation to meet your end goal — marketing and selling your software.
If you’re considering to hire a SaaS content marketing agency, our blog can help you find the right SaaS content marketing agency for you.
In any case, good luck! Below are some additional resources that may help.
Additional Resources for Developing SaaS Content Marketing Strategy
- 5 Content Marketing Tips For B2B SaaS Businesses
- SaaS Content Marketing Experts Share 2021 Trends To Consider
- The 3 Key Phases of SaaS Content Marketing
- Use These 5 Interactive Content Ideas for Your SaaS Business
- Expert’s Guide To SaaS Content Marketing [W/ Case Studies]
- How Successful Marketers Combine Content and Email Marketing
- How to Measure Your Content Marketing ROI + 7 Metrics That Matter
- How to Check If Your Content Marketing Is Working by Neil Patel
- How to Know If Your Content Marketing Just Isn’t Working by Neil Patel
- How SEO And Content Marketing Work Together To Fuel Your Online Success by Forbes
- How to Integrate Content Marketing & SEO by Search Engine Journal