What is SaaS?
SaaS stands for software-as-a-service, which is synonymous with cloud based software. As our knowledge of software advances, so does innovation and the services that come with it. That is why now more than ever SaaS companies are on the rise. In order to keep up with the rising competition in this industry it is important to know the best practices for marketing your SaaS organization so that you can increase sales and ultimately grow your brand.
That being said, let’s take a look at some of the opportunities there are to increase SaaS sales.
Adopt the Inbound Methodology
Inbound marketing is all about making it easy for your target audience to find you. You can use inbound to generate more leads by offering helpful resources that people actually want to engage with or download. Ideally, you’ll have this content gated in order to collect contact information, and it opens up a world of lead nurturing opportunities. These lead nurturing opportunities are where you can make the difference in winning more SaaS sales.
Develop an Eye-Catching Email Campaign
Email marketing is a tried and true tactic that helps to nurture leads through the buyer’s journey. Here’s a quick look at the elements that make for a successful email marketing campaign.
- Use from addresses that include your name. This will help to keep your emails out of the spam folder. It also adds a personal touch, and people are more likely to open your emails when they see it’s coming from a real person.
- Answer FAQs before they’re asked. If you can address questions and concerns before they come up you’ll build trust and be seen as a true subject matter expert that people can lean on when they pitch adopting your software to their superior. If you can manage to speak to these FAQs in the subject line of the email you’ll get even better open rates.
- Include a video in email. Video emails are a lot more engaging than standard emails, and therefore generate more interest. It’s also easier for recipients to digest information through video as opposed to reading, so your messaging can really resonate.
Chatbots and Live Chat
So many businesses have started utilizing chatbots and live chat tools that people are expecting to interact with your organization in this way. Keep in mind these tools have been widely adopted because they work. Live chat offers the ability to communicate instantly with another human being which can be monumental in providing excellent customer service. Many people also prefer this to calling on the phone.
From a chatbot perspective, you can program your chatbot to answer frequently asked questions and direct visitors to specific resources when it’s outside of business hours and your sales team isn't manning live chat. Your chatbot can also be useful in booking meetings, qualifying opportunities, and decreasing your bounce rates.
Run a Review Marketing Campaign
More often than not, the customers that already subscribe to your software ot tool will be happy to leave you a review if you ask them. Even if these reviews do not lead to a direct referral, it gives your organization the opportunity to increase website visibility and accumulate more social proof.
Check out our podcast episode on marketing for reviews for more on review marketing tips and best practices.
As proven and reliable as lead nurturing tactics are, nothing compares to talking first hand to a subject matter expert. That’s why once you have helped to guide your leads through the funnel to the point where they are reaching out to a sales representative to schedule a demo, it’s important for your sales reps to all be on the same page and know how to overcome certain objections and what promotions they can offer. That’s why we recommend every sales team develop a sales playbook.
Offer Free Trials
Offering free access to your software for a limited time is a great way to get your foot in the door with companies that could actually benefit from using your software. It also shows good faith that you are willing to help out while expecting nothing in return.
Once they test drive your software for a given amount of time (typically 30 days), they are more likely to sign up for a subscription to continue using your software as long as it provides them value. This is because they will have enjoyed the functionality and user experience, or they see the value it brings to their organization and determine it’s worth paying for a subscription.
PRO TIP: Not requiring a credit card to start a trial will substantially increase the number of free trials that you create. Show good faith - if your tool is valuable, those free trials will convert into paying customers.
Offer Demos and Trainings
Some leads may find that a free trial is overwhelming if they have no orientation of how to navigate or operate the software. Thats why offering a demo or a training can be so powerful in terms of winning more deals. To have an expert from your team walk them through where to go and how to utilize every feature that your software offers is much easier on new users. Your team members are also there to answer questions as they arise, they can also help connect the dots users on how they can utilize the software for specific purposes that relate to their organization.
PRO TIP: This person should NOT be a sales person. Your goal with a demo and training during a free trial should be to provide value, not to sell. Use this as an opportunity to make sure your free trial users are comfortable with your tools and start to use it regularly. Once that free trial is getting close to finishing, then have your sales representative reach out.
Don’t be Afraid to Follow up
During a free trial, it's important to stay front of mind. One of the biggest issues with SaaS is that people start free trials and then forget about it. They don't know how to use it, how it benefits them, or how to implement it into their daily workflow. Following up with best practices, benefits of using your tools, pro tips, and even new ideas of how to use your tool will ensure that you at least get a fair chance with your prospects.
Invest in the Success of Your Customers
If you are committed to helping your customers succeed, they will notice. You will keep more customers in the long run, increase the chances of up-selling a retainer, and increase the chances for a referral.
And with that, you are well on your way to increasing SaaS sales. If you have identified that you need to invest in inbound marketing, but are not sure where to start, you can schedule a free consultation with our team by clicking the button below.