Updated: Feb 14
SaaS businesses have exploded recently.
You can’t swing a cat without hitting a new SaaS business (the data suggest that approximately 30,000 SaaS companies exist worldwide)
But how do they grow fast and effectively? Let’s take a look.
SaaS companies will need to focus on three main things:
Simple, right? Let’s dive in.
So assuming you’ve correctly identified your market, you have a rough idea of who your customers might be, now you need to actually get the contact details. The old-school way was cold callings. People would pick up the phone all day and just call call call. And while this is still happening and can still be a good tactic, unfortunately, the world isn’t the same as it was in those days and people are reluctant, to say the least. An email is far less invasive and far more automatable so it’s an excellent place to start. Automation tools will help you harvest leads from network sites such as LinkedIn. Find the tools, learn them, and set them to work finding potential customers. Running marketing ads and driving traffic to your site will also give you a good indication of who is interested in your product. When you have enough data from your website you could feed that data back into marketing platforms such as LinkedIn and build lookalike audiences from your web traffic. Experiment with email content, but generally, keep them short and clear and make sure your value proposition stands out.
We love Appsumo. We have personally launched multiple SaaS companies there and it works. The premise is that you exchange a slight sacrifice in revenue for a successful launch and a bunch of customers. An LTD or Life Time Deal is a way to give your product to an early adopter for a one-off price, Appsumo favors the LTD and it has to be said, it works really well. The insights you gain from your early customers won via Appsumo will potentially help you build better versions of your product. You may find Appsumo's marketing budget surpasses yours and they will probably rank higher for your product- but this is fine. At this stage it's all about getting your first customers, getting validation, and getting someone to part with their hard-earned cash (it's a lovely feeling)
Have an SEO plan from the beginning. Agencies like Straight Up Search are an excellent choice. It's too much responsibility for your in-house marketing team, far too time-consuming, and requires and niche expertise that only comes from dedicating your career to SEO alone. Eventually, your traffic will have an equivalent value in paid ads. This means you are getting free marketing. It's a no-brainer and by far one of the best investments you can make in your company's future.
Here are some SEO stats to inspire you:
68% of online experiences begin with a search for something in a search engine such as Google
Approx 69% of digital marketers recommend SEO over PPC for generating sales.
Around 85% of internet users ignore paid ads, choosing to click on organic search results!
79% of people don't go past the first page or their search results
So as you see, SEO should be a priority. The benefit of being aware of SEO at the beginning is that you will set the foundations right, ensuring your site is technically sound, and save a bunch of headaches.
Check out our guide to growing a small business here