The appeal of software as a service has gained a significant foothold in the marketplace with entrepreneurs who see SaaS as the ideal platform for many applications. For an industry that has been around for scarcely 30 years, insights into marketing your SaaS product is in high in demand. Utilizing these three critical strategies can help you grow your SaaS business.
Focus on Retention
The trend in most SaaS startups today is the tendency to focus almost exclusively on client acquisition while placing little emphasis on customer development. This is an inefficient use of resources. Without a clear sense of the customer, your marketing funnel will never be strategically focused. Oberlo cautions, “without a clear target, target marketing won't be optimal.” When you focus on the solution, not the product, you create the potential to innovate in a direction that matches the needs of the market. And you're not wasting time pushing time, money and other resources into marketing to a market that doesn't exist.
Make It Personal
An essential element of maximizing retention is personalizing your customers’ experience. This means identifying the needs of your clients and providing data that shows how the product is meeting those needs with intuitive visualizations. Entrepreneur Toby Scammell suggests that "instead of engagement metrics, SaaS companies should start measuring true value-delivery metrics such as 'Time Saved' and 'Jobs Done.'" By implementing effective buyer personas, you gain insight into the core values that will give you the opportunity to provide the value that encourages customer loyalty.
Understand Pricing as a Marketing Tool
The value a SaaS service gives its customers is related to price structuring in some surprising ways. With the explosion of the industry, companies that offered SaaS services at a premium a short time ago now must provide those services with the basic subscription service models in order to stay competitive. Price has to reflect the client’s perceived value in the context of the broader marketplace. The subscription rates should reflect both the escalating needs of the client and their willingness to pay.
Entrepreneurial guru Gary Vaynerchuk is often quoted as saying that the most important skill you’ll need to develop in SaaS is patience. SaaS companies that have minimized business fundamentals in favor of a pure acquisition focus have forgotten this essential lesson. Acquisitions are important. There’s no getting around it. But, by making a priority of retaining your acquisitions, personalizing your customer experience and on creating an innovative product that solves problems, you can avoid the failures that are so common to SaaS enterprises that failed to implement that lesson.
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