SaaS is a difficult field to break into, but marketing your brand effectively is even harder. If you want to market your software to the right people in the right places with effective content, hire a SaaS marketing agency to help. But how do you go about this when so many marketing agencies claim to be the best? This guide will help you through this process so you end up with the perfect fit for your brand.
What Is SaaS Marketing All About?
SaaS marketing is different from marketing that sells a physical product. Figuring out how to do this can be difficult for beginners, especially when you’ve got so many other aspects of your business to worry about. Identifying the winning strategies for a brand quickly and reliably is how our founders, Dan and Jon Snow, grew and scaled several ecommerce brands to 8-figure exits. Your agency needs to provide guidance and care to make sure your startup grows profitably and sustainably.
Every company wants repeat business, but this is especially critical in SaaS. The best way to make money in this arena is to earn and keep business via subscriptions.
SaaS marketing also involves creating different “levels” of content to reach people of different backgrounds. You wouldn’t try to reach a seasoned pro with the same content you’d use to target a beginner. Understanding their diverse needs is vital to effectively show your different audiences that your software is the solution to their problem.
SaaS marketing is fiercely competitive as other brands in your niche try new, innovative brand strategies and marketing tactics. Your SaaS marketing agency has to set itself apart and provide people with incentives and value for using your product over the rest.
SaaS Marketing Tips and Tricks to Know
Agencies providing SaaS advertising on social channels like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Google, and others must be experts in connecting your product’s solution to your audience’s problem. Here are some of the strategies we’ve seen be successful for SaaS startups.
- Tailor your information: The SaaS sphere is all about information — so focus on this aspect first. Consumers aren’t likely to impulse buy a SaaS platform; they’ll most likely research extensively and compare several products before purchasing. Give them all the information they need to make a decision about your product.
- Leverage promotional materials and giveaways: This might seem counterintuitive since you’re trying to make money, but giveaways are powerful tools to jumpstart SaaS marketing. The hardest part is getting people on board in the first place. Try offering a free trial of your product to incentivize a download. From there, it’s easy for customers to love your product and sign up for the full version or purchase a subscription.
- Create custom content: Help people learn more about your service through custom content. Focus on topics related to your product and the solutions they provide to cast a wide net through search engine optimization (SEO).
Start this process by identifying the specific keywords you want to rank highly in (an effective marketing agency can identify which keywords will help you achieve your marketing goals). From there, use blogs, videos, expert guides, and live feeds that feature those keywords in different and creative ways. Your agency should be efficient and inventive when engaging and informing your audience about your fantastic service.
- Pay attention to SaaS review sites: A good review is worth its weight in gold, and this is especially true for SaaS. With so much competition out there, many potential customers turn to reviews when deciding which products to buy. As a result, many SaaS-specific review sites, like Trustpilot, Capterra, and GetApp, are valuable marketing tools.
Check out any existing reviews on these sites to make sure they are positive. If you aren’t already listed, reach out to the site to get your brand on there. Once your company is listed, encourage customers to review your product. Do this by offering incentives like a free month or a bonus product to make reviewing worth their while.
- Incentivize referrals: Like reviews, actual word-of-mouth referrals drive lots of business to SaaS firms. In an ideal world, this would happen organically, but you can help move the process with incentives. You’d be surprised what people are willing to do for even a small incentive. It doesn’t even have to be cash — it can be anything from a free month’s subscription to bonus features or even special access to products.
- Engage with customers: It’s easy for SaaS companies to feel like they aren’t connected to their customers since they don’t have in-person interactions with users. But you can still have meaningful interactions with your customers; instead of promoting your products and calling it a day, try a more engaging approach. Go live on social media to do a demo or do a question and answer session. You’ll promote information about your product and set yourself apart from other SaaS competitors.
- Expand your reach through podcasts: You may think partnering with influencers isn’t SaaS-friendly, but podcasts are one avenue worth taking advantage of. A podcast feature can be a mutually beneficial relationship — you get exposure, and the podcast’s host gets an interesting guest.
Podcasts are usually niche, so you need to find the ones talking about your product topics. From there, reach out to the hosts and pitch yourself as a guest. Most podcasts are pretty lean operations run by everyday people. Odds are a host will at least see or listen to your pitch — so make it count! Include what you like about their show, your relevant experience, and what topics you’d be an expert on.
How to Hire the Perfect SaaS Marketing Agency for Your Startup/Brand
A SaaS marketing agency can do the heavy lifting for you and let you focus on more important tasks like software development.
When deciding on what agency to use for your startup, focus on their customer service. Just like in SaaS, detail-oriented and reliable customer service makes a huge difference.
Look for a responsive, available marketing agency to be your partner instead of just seeing you as a source of income. The right marketing agency will be just as invested in and dedicated to your success as you are. Part of our process of getting to know our client’s business includes a detailed discussion so we can recommend the best services to help you achieve your goals. Whether that’s marketing, creative content production, or any of our services, we focus on the platforms and strategies best suited to your brand’s needs.
What Types of Ads Should I Use for My Brand?
Different types of ad services have a variety of strengths and weaknesses depending on your audience and what you’re looking for. These are a few of the marketing services we offer to startups and brands of all sizes:
- Facebook: Take advantage of the biggest social media website in the world with nearly 2.5 billion monthly active users and about 1.7 billion daily active users. When it comes to size, reach, and effectiveness, nothing beats Facebook. Get your content on this platform if it isn’t already!
- Instagram: According to Statista, Instagram boasts about one billion monthly active users. This platform is an especially effective marketing tool for reaching younger people like Generation Z. As of 2018, 72% of U.S. teens were regularly active on Instagram, compared to 51% who are active on Facebook.
We have had great success on Instagram, as shown by our work with Perfect Sculpt. While they had a strong Instagram business profile with over 470k followers, they weren’t taking advantage of this resource. By tapping into Perfect Sculpt’s following, we created a viral marketing campaign with celebrities and influencers, and we eventually brought in 524,000 new followers and a total increase in revenue of 14,350%.
- Snapchat: You can’t talk about Millennials and Generation Z without also talking about Snapchat. Brands don’t usually consider this platform as it’s not part of “the big three” platforms most people typically consider for social media advertising. But it’s the place to be if you’re looking to reach younger demographics. According to Pew Research, 73% of 18-24-year-olds use Snapchat, and almost 50% of adults ages 25-30 also use the platform regularly. Instead of tackling this platform on your own, your agency should guide you to reach your target group with content that drives conversions.
- Google: Google reigns supreme when it comes to search engines, as it accounts for 90% of all searches worldwide and processes over 3.5 billion searches every day. The right agency will make sure your SaaS brand is connected to high-intent keywords and ranks highly on Google’s search engine results pages (or SERPs). That way, you’re reaching the people searching to address the problem your product solves.
While there are ways to reach the top of Google’s search results organically, you can also pay for that top spot through “sponsored” advertisements. We’ve helped brands grow and scale profitably with the Google ad strategies we’ve developed for nearly a decade.
- YouTube: Video content is more popular than ever now thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.
YouTube boasts 2 billion users every month — making it the second-largest social media platform only after Facebook. This platform is also quite popular with younger demographics who have grown up with social media. As of 2018, 82% of U.S. teens say they regularly use Youtube, according to Pew Research. A good agency will help you find and partner with influencers and YouTubers to reach your audience and drive conversions for your startup.
- Email: Email is still a vital service for reaching your audience and growing your brand. You can get a great return on your investment in this area as well.
A sound email strategy drives more revenue than you’d expect. Based on a U.K. study in 2018, ROI for email is £42 for every pound spent, equating to around $55 per $1.30 spent. This number increased about $13 from the 2017 study. Whether it’s siloed or is a part of your omnichannel strategy, email can be a great way to connect with your users who are interested in your startup.
- SMS: This type of marketing has exploded in recent years as people use their phones more. While this marketing method can be effective, you need to do it right since it’s considered a more intimate and personal form of communication — you don’t want to overdo it and risk turning people off.
Ensure your SaaS marketing agency handles the entire process for you, including copywriting, design, a live demo, calendar planning, sending the texts out, and reporting on the text campaign’s effectiveness.
With the proper research and due diligence, it’s possible to hire the perfect SaaS marketing agency for your startup or brand. Just like your customers will scrutinize how effective your service can be for them, you should do the same with any marketing company you consider. Contact us today for a consultation to find out more about how we can help your software-as-a-service business meet its goals to grow and succeed.