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Motarme Guide to Marketing SaaS products
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Motarme Guide to Marketing SaaS products

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Quick Guide to marketing your software-as-a-service product. How to drive customer acquisition for a SaaS product. Explains the process from driving web traffic, through to generating registrations, …

Quick Guide to marketing your software-as-a-service product. How to drive customer acquisition for a SaaS product. Explains the process from driving web traffic, through to generating registrations, then paid subscriptions and finally focusing on customer retention.

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    • 1. You’ve built a new SaaS system. How do you acquire customers? 2
    • 2. When you’re marketing a SaaS product you need to know how to generate web traffic, convert that traffic to trial accounts and persuade those trial accounts to become paying subscribers. 3
    • 3. Key Points • Understand your buyers • Deliver value to your buyers quickly • Define your acquisition process • Get good at online lead generation • Keep cost of sales low – use web and phone • Measure performance of your process • Continually improve conversion rates 4
    • 4. How do your promote your SaaS system? 5
    • 5. What is Your Value Proposition? Answer these questions  Why should I buy something from you?  What value does your SaaS product provide to me?  How much is that worth to me – money, time saved, other benefits?  How quickly can I see the value your system delivers?  Why is your product better than other similar products?  Why is your product better than what I do at the moment?  Can you show me examples of your system delivering value?  Focus on the results you produce rather than what you do 6
    • 6. Who Are Your Target Buyers? Who are your buyers?  Where are they (countries, languages)  What industry sectors?  What types of organisation? Size, location ...  Any specific target companies?  What are their typical roles or titles?  How does your system relate to their job?  What are their key concerns/drivers/goals?  What are their demographics?  Where do they hang out online?  What sources of information do they use? 7
    • 7. What is Your Customer Acquisition Process? Bring people Bring people to your to your website website Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Persuade them to Persuade them to pay for your pay for your service service Convince them to Convince them to renew each year –– renew each year retain your retain your customers customers Traffic Traffic Conversion Conversion Subscription Subscription Retention Retention 8
    • 8. 4 Key Steps for SaaS Customer Acquisition Bring people Bring people (traffic) to (traffic) to your website your website Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Persuade them to Persuade them to pay for your pay for your service service Convince them to Convince them to renew each year –– renew each year retain your retain your customers customers Traffic Traffic Conversion Conversion Subscription Subscription Retention Retention Traffic Conversion Subscription Retentio n 9
    • 9. 4 Key Steps for SaaS Customer Acquisition Bring people Bring people to your to your website website Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Persuade them to Persuade them to pay for your pay for your service service Convince them to Convince them to renew each year –– renew each year retain your retain your customers customers Traffic Traffic Conversion Conversion Subscription Subscription Retention Retention 10
    • 10. 1. Bring people to your site - Traffic Bring people Bring people to your to your website website To market your software-as-a-service product successfully you will need to understand online marketing Traffic Traffic Where can I find ….? 11
    • 11. 1. Bring people to your site - Traffic Bring people Bring people to your to your website website Web Social Pay-perclick Email Display ads Traffic Traffic €$£ 12
    • 12. 1. Bring people to your site - Traffic You have to understand online marketing because your buyers will find you before you find them Bring people Bring people to your to your website website In aasurvey of technology In survey of technology buyers in the US, 80% of buyers in the US, 80% of those buyers said they found those buyers said they found the vendor, not the other way the vendor, not the other way round. round. Traffic Traffic Source: MarketingSherpa B2B Source: MarketingSherpa B2B Technology Marketing Technology Marketing Benchmark Survey Benchmark Survey • • Buyers are doing most of their initial research online before initiating conversations with vendors and are better informed at an earlier stage. You need to make sure your target audience finds you when they search online for your type of product or service. 13
    • 13. 1. Bring people to your site - Traffic   Traffic Traffic Bring them to your site using natural search (using search engine optimization) and paid search (Google and Bing pay-per-click ads, LinkedIn or Facebook ads, display ads, retargeting)  Encourage them to connect to you via social media – your blog, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google +, YouTube, Slideshare  Bring people Bring people to your to your website website Think about how your target buyers search and what they search for Persuade them to register on your site for a free trial, content or newsletter so you can bring them back using email • Sea r ch r o ute • 1 Search route 2 • • rc S ea te N rou h • People take different routes to your site when searching Their searches can fall into broad categories e.g. describing a problem, describing a symptom of the problem, describing what they think the solution is, searching for a product or brand name etc. You need to understand which kinds of searches are best for bringing your desired buyer to you You need to analyze and understand each major “search route” into your site so you can increase that traffic Use Google Analytics, KISSMetrics, ClickTale to monitor and analyze where people are coming from and 14 what search terms they are using
    • 14. 1. Bring people to your site - Traffic  Produce content that will interest your target buyers (use your buyer personas to identify what will interest them)  Over time a percentage of the visitors who read your content will then register for your trial  Examples of content people will register for includes: how-to guides, tours and overviews, eBooks, white papers, industry surveys, case studies, Q&A interviews, company and product information Place that content as downloads on your site and as posts in your blog  Traffic Traffic   Bring people Bring people to your to your website website To generate good search traffic your SaaS product is probably not enough you will also need to have good content like guides, eBooks, case studies etc. Link to that content using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus etc. Visitor gets white paper Bring people to your content using Email, Google ads, ‘natural’ search and social media Ask them to register to download the content e.g. white paper You get contact details 15 of visitor
    • 15. 2. Persuade People To Signup for Trial  Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Once you are driving regular traffic to your site your next problem is to get those visitors to sign-up for your free trial  You do this through:  Clear value proposition   Landing pages  Clear calls to action  A/B testing  ‘Nurturing’ and marketing automation  Conversion Conversion Home page design Analysis of visitor behaviour  Clear Value Proposition – can you communicate the value you deliver in a couple of seconds to a web visitor? You need to get your pitch across quickly and clearly  Home page design – keep the home page simple with the clear objective of moving visitors toward the ‘Free pilot’ sign-up. Look at the layout used by other succesful SaaS products such as CampaignMonitor, MailChimp, and Basecamp. Provide sufficient information (videos, graphics, documents, slides) so visitors can “sell themselves”. Provide someone to talk to if a visitor has questions. 16
    • 16. 2. Persuade People To Signup for Trial  Landing pages – when you set up Google ads or email campaigns you can bring visitors to special pages on your site – ‘landing pages’. These pages are specially designed to increase ‘conversion’. Check out resources from vendors like KissMetrics and Unbounce, consultants like Conversion Rate Experts, Wider Funnel, Jeffrey & Brian Eisenberg and analysts like MarketingSherpa on good landing page design.  Calls to action – your home page and landing page should have clear calls to action, with corresponding buttons. Call-to-action button design is a subject to itself. Use descriptive verbs on the button text (e.g. “Download now” rather than “submit”), use bright colours and make the buttons as big as possible. Include a product screenshot near the call to action and sell the benefits the user will get from taking the action.  A/B testing - a/b testing means testing two variations e.g. sending one email to 500 people and a slightly different version to another 500 to see which version has the best response. You can a/b test almost everything in online marketing – your home page (using Google website optimizer), landing pages (using Google or Unbounce), your Google pay-per-click ads, emails, tag lines, graphics and downloads. Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Conversion Conversion 17
    • 17. 2. Persuade People To Signup for Trial  “Nurturing” and marketing automation – as people register to download your content you will build up a list of contact details of people who have shown interest in your product and area of focus. Start ‘nurturing’ these contacts by periodically offering them other high-value content that you think they will be interested in. Use marketing automation to automate the workflow of repeated interactions with large numbers of contacts. Keep the nurturing simple to begin with e.g. send a follow-up email every 3 to 4 weeks offering a different piece of content. If you see contacts interacting positively, call them to encourage them to sign-up for a free trial.  Analysis of visitor behaviour – once you’ve been running for a few weeks and you have some content and trial registrations, you need to analyze what is happening so you can improve your conversion rates. You want to know what search terms people are bringing people to your site, what other sites refer traffic to you, what way visitors act when they get to your site and which kind of website changes will increase the number of people who register. Google Analytics provides loads of information so start by asking some good questions and see if Analytics gives you the answers you need. Set up conversion tracking on your Google ads. Use tools from KISSMetrics or Clicktale to analyse visitor behaviour. Check out “Web Analytics 2.0” by Avinash Kaushik and search online and in Twitter for free tips on web analytics and conversion 18 optimization Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Conversion Conversion
    • 18. 3. Persuade Them To Pay For Your Service   First - look at SaaS vendors like CampaignMonitor, ConstantContact, Salesforce and others to see how they do it. Learn from best practice.  Persuade them to Persuade them to pay for your pay for your service service At this point you have a number of people using your pilot. How do you persuade them to take the next step and become paying subscribers? Demonstrate value – early and repeatedly; make sure you let users access most of the key features of the product – don’t provide them with a ‘hobbled’ version that doesn’t demonstrate its strengths  Encourage use - encourage pilot users to add stuff to the system – records, data, graphics, whatever it is they can put in. The more they add, the more likely they are to find the service ‘sticky’. Conversely, if they are not using the system during the pilot then they’re unlikely to become paying customers.  Call them - ring your prospects to see how they find using the system – they’ll be pleasantly surprised to hear someone offering to help. Phone calls are cheap compared to sales visits so use the phone and web to move your pilot customers to paying subscribers. Call them , don’t wait for them to call you.  Keep price entry point low – let small businesses in for a low price, have tiered enterprise pricing  Make it easy to buy – accept most common forms of payment Subscription Subscription 19
    • 19. 4. Retain Your Customers   Now you need to concentrate on ensuring that these customers stay with you when it comes time to renew  Never stop selling to your customers – constantly remind them of the value of your system  Convince them to Convince them to renew each year –– renew each year retain your retain your customers customers At this point you are generating a regular flow of new customers. Monitor their usage – if people’s activity slows or their accounts become dormant then get in touch with them to see if you can help somehow  Survey customers on a regular basis to see if they are satisfied and to identify potential causes of dissatisfaction  Dedicated sales staff - For larger customers, have specific sales people allocated to engage with them in the period leading up to the renewal – treat it like its own form of sale Retention Retention 20
    • 20. Now you are generating traffic, signing up pilot users, acquiring paying customers and persuading them to renew. What do you do next? 21
    • 21. Optimize Bring people Bring people to your to your website website Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Persuade them to Persuade them to pay for your pay for your service service Convince them to Convince them to renew each year –– renew each year retain your retain your customers customers Traffic Traffic Conversion Conversion Subscription Subscription Retention Retention 22
    • 22. Optimize each step, improve conversions Bring people Bring people (traffic) to (traffic) to your website your website Persuade them Persuade them to sign-up for aa to sign-up for Free Trial Free Trial Persuade them to Persuade them to pay for your pay for your service service Convince them to Convince them to renew each year –– renew each year retain your retain your customers customers Traffic Traffic Conversion Conversion Subscription Subscription Retention Retention Traffic Trial Subscribe Renew 23
    • 23. Good Resources Here are some useful resources: Links • Great presentation - http://www.forentrepreneurs.com/slides-sales-marketing-machine/ • Neil Patel’s blog QuickSprout (www.quicksprout.com) has excellent information on getting found on the web • KissMetrics www.kissmetrics.com and ClickTale www.clicktale.com have great blogs • Unbounce - http://unbounce.com – tool to build landing pages that you can use when launching a product • Lincoln Murphy’s blog Sixteen Ventures - http://sixteenventures.com/ - advice on pricing for SaaS • Sean Ellis’ advice on Product Market Fit for startups - http://www.startupmarketing.com/the-startup-pyramid/ • Look at www.widerfunnel.com and www.conversionscientist.com Books • “Don’t make me think” by Steve Krug – great book on web design • “Crossing the Chasm”, Geoffrey A. Moore – classic guide to product marketing, good intro to marketing for technologists • “The Art of SEO” – gets going after about page 80 • “Advanced Google Adwords” by Brad Geddes • “Web Analytics 2.0” by Avanish Kaushik 24
    • 24. About Motarme 25
    • 25. Motarme is an easy-to-use enterprise Marketing Automation system. Motarme is specifically designed to help business-to-business (B2B) companies in the technology, software and industrial sectors generate sales leads online. In addition to our web-based Marketing Automation product we provide consulting, web marketing and lead generation services. Our customers include Siemens, Mergon, SF Engineering and mid-size and early stage technology companies. Web: www.Motarme.com.
    • 26. About Motarme Clients “The system delivered real, measurable results in a short timeframe – sales and contacts from our target audience at Tier 1 companies.” Caolan Bushell Business Development Manager Mergon Group “Generating leads online is now a central part of our sales strategy.” Barry Rooney Chief Operations Officer Siemens ITSS “ We have seen for ourselves how a solid strategy has helped to drive traffic to our site and generate sales leads.” Joe Lynch General Manager IMEC Technologies
    • 27. Automated Marketing That Drives Sales michael.white@motarme.com @michaelgwhite Thank You www.motarme.com