What Makes SaaS Marketing Unique And How To Do It Well

What Makes SaaS Marketing Unique And How To Do It Well

What Makes SaaS Marketing Unique And How To Do It Well

Software as a Service (SaaS) marketing encompasses a specific niche in the eCommerce market, but a pretty large niche. According to surveys, 80% of businesses use at least one SaaS product, and 73% predict nearly all of their most-used services will be SaaS by the end of this year.

That being said, this multi-billion dollar industry operates on a unique model, and as a result, requires a unique marketing approach.

A SaaS business host software and make them available to users through the internet, often via a subscription fee.

This is why traditional marketing tips are not always applicable to SaaS marketing: there is no physical product to showcase, the service is often constantly changing and updating, or it is highly specialized to suit a handful of companies.

Even the few users who fully appreciate the usefulness of the software don’t necessarily “own” the product.

It’s due to all of these unique challenges that a specific breed of SaaS marketing has emerged. Some of these tips will seem counterintuitive to some marketers, but they are all designed to highlight the strengths of SaaS.


More Than Free Samples

If you can conjure up any examples of SaaS products, the first thing you’ll likely notice is that they’re all free, at least for a time.

Free trials are the lifeblood of SaaS, as it gives users the chance to try out the software, get hooked and convince them to continue onto the full subscription.

Compare this to traditional marketing: most companies wouldn’t dream of giving out complete access to their product for free.

That is the difference between direct ownership and SaaS, one relies on the specific instance of sale while the other is a long game that relies on protracted investment and engagement.

Make It Quick

Another thing that sets apart SaaS from regular products is the speed of sales. In B2C SaaS interactions, the time between a customer discovering your service and signing up for a free trial is often a matter of hours.

This is one of the advantages of the free trial: it encourages your customers to engage quickly because there is practically no barrier to entry. Often customers will look to SaaS products because they solve a particular need that has suddenly arisen, rather than a long decision process.

Seeing as 89% of SaaS businesses depend on new customer acquisition for growth, capitalizing on this sudden need is essential.

This means the way you make sales has to facilitate this speed of entry. A SaaS customer will usually make a purchase decision not long after visiting your product’s landing page.

Compare this to product marketing, which could mean days or weeks of research and deliberation, allowing for a more wide-net internet presence.

For SaaS landing pages it is more important than ever to sell your product succinctly, after which try to put as few barriers as possible between your landing page and your checkout page.

Stand Out, But Not With Price

As the SaaS market is expanding os rapidly, you can be pretty sure that, whatever your product offers, there will be competitors out there offering similar services.

It begs the question: how do you stand out in such a crowded market? The first inclination might be to undercut on price.

It’s a common tactic from traditional product marketing; offering the same product for less; and while some statistics show a 1% price reduction boosts sales by 11%, it’s not always a sustainable tactic in the SaaS game.

Due to the iterative and constantly updating nature of SaaS, you might be able to offer the cheapest option for some time but eventually, another company can come in and undercut you, dragging the price down for the whole market.

If you base your offer on pricing then suddenly you don’t have a leg to stand on. Much better is to advertise the quality of your features first, something that takes a lot more work to beat.

The Way Forward

This is only the beginning of what makes SaaS marketing, what gets your customers in the door. The hard part is continuing to engage them in your service, and that’s all down to the quality of your product.

Put the quality of your software first and the marketing will follow.

Michael Dehoyos

Michael Dehoyos is a content marketer and editor at Academicbrits. He assists companies in developing their SaaS marketing strategy concepts through his writing and presentations. He also contributes to numerous sites and publications.

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