Best practice marketing for SaaS
Inbound marketing is helping SaaS businesses grow all over the world, here are 5 steps to start using inbound marketing within your SaaS business today. If you’re unfamiliar with inbound marketing you can download our ebook ‘Modern Marketing’ using the link below.
1) Drive your prospects to your website.
The end goal of inbound marketing is to close deals with your ideal customers, therefore the starting point is to attract those customers to your website. The first step in doing this is to plan out your ‘buyer personas’, these are fictional people who fit the description of the people who are most likely to buy from you, here’s an example, if your services specialise in helping new businesses manage their HR activities the persona may be - ‘Business Owner Barry: owner of a business, that business has between 1-11 employees, it was founded after 2010’. You may a second persona - ‘HR Manager Harriet: HR Manager at a business, that business has between 1-11 employees, it was founded after 2010’.
The second step is to get blogging, making sure to make the subject matter of interest to your buyer personas, after each paragraph of your blog post think to yourself “Are Barry and Harriet still reading this? Is this helpful to them?” Once you have finished writing your blog, you can optimise it for search engines, helping your blog pop up as the answer to the question typed into the search engine. Share your blog posts on social media, and focus on the channels which your buyer personas engage with, whether it be LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook or any other social media platform. You can also share your blog posts with existing customers who have bought other services from your company to see if you can help their pains too.
2) Capture your leads
Converting your website & blog visitors into leads is the next step. The best way to do this is to have a juicy piece of premium content available to download at the bottom of your blog post. Again this must appeal to at least one of your buyer personas (Barry & Harriet in this case). A great example of this could be an eguide, for example “How to minimise HR admin tasks”, the ebook could then link in to the type of services which you provide. Second you will need to create a ‘’call to action’’, an example of one of these is at the bottom of this blog post you will notice one of Attitude Design’s very own ebook’s ‘Modern Marketing’, by clicking on this you will be transferred to a landing page.
In exchange for this free content you can create a form on a landing page which should ask the downloader for a few snippets of key information which will help to determine their buyer persona, for example this could be their company name, job title, name, phone number and email address. This information can be automatically recorded once submitted and inputted into your CRM system. Now that you have the information on who found your blog post useful, let’s talk about how to qualify the prospect as being an ideal customer.
3) Educate your leads
Nurturing your leads is a crucial part of the lead generation process, by educating your prospects about the services which you know they are interested in you are helping them through their buyer journey, rather than selling to them (at least at this stage). It will also help you determine if they are the right fit for your services. Do they fit a buyer persona? Have they downloaded your CTA content? If both of these are a yes then the lead fits the bill.
If your lead is yet to download your content you should be feeding them other useful content via email, it is important that the emails which you are sending them are helpful and that you are not annoying them. For example if the lead is yet to download your CTA content they are unlikely to be interested in offers you have on currently, they are more likely to appreciate a case study showing how a similar business has benefitted from your services.
4) Provide a taste of your services
Once your lead is qualified as being a) interested in your services and b) the right fit customer for your business, you can offer them the chance to experience your service for a limited amount of time (alternately you can provide them a demo of your software).
Firstly, set the expectation of what your trial/demo will include clearly, a bad move would be to hold back information of any features which would not be available during the trial. Your trial offer should be included in your emails sent to the lead during step 3, not as an individual email but at the bottom of emails, it should also be promoted throughout your website consistently.
5) Bring home the bacon
Whilst your prospective client is experiencing their trial of your software be sure that one of your sales team is helping them get to grips with the features. Handing a prospective client your software and saying ‘let us know what you think’ is entirely useless. Think back to when you were first learning the ropes of your software, what were the hidden gem features that you wish you had discovered earlier? what was the most challenging part of the software to get to grips with? By regularly checking in with your prospective client and providing your expertise you will be offering them something which a blog post, ebook or manual cannot provide - tangible experience from a real human being, and the opportunity for them to easy ask questions.
Be absolutely sure to give the prospective client a call a couple of days before the end of their trial, ask how they have found the whole experience, and if they would like to make a purchase, however you choose to close the business comes down to how you like to do business, but by following these 5 steps you will always stand a great chance of satisfying the customer and closing the deal!
Note: It is worth noting that the benefits and ease of this process will be noticeable tenfold by using Hubspot software.