Top SaaS Inbound Marketing Strategies for 2022
Saas inbound marketing strategy is not just another buzzword in the industry. Working in SaaS, you’re probably always on the lookout for the best strategies to utilize for your SaaS marketing plan in 2022 and beyond.
For that very reason, the top SaaS inbound marketing strategies that you can start using today.
What is SaaS Inbound Marketing?
A SaaS inbound marketing strategy’s main purpose is to create awareness and to pull potential customers toward your brand. Rather than trying to find these customers by putting out ads for a broad audience, inbound marketing makes your products visible to potential buyers via more implicit and targeted means. That is just one of the reasons why these strategies generate 54% more leads than outbound marketing.
However, keep in mind that this does not mean outbound marketing is inferior to inbound marketing in any way. In fact, both outbound and inbound marketing have their own place and offer value in different ways. Although SaaS companies usually prefer inbound marketing, your company might be the exception, rather than the rule. So, please take into account what kind of a company you have before deciding on either outbound or inbound marketing.
SaaS inbound marketing strategy is all about creating content that your target audience is likely to engage with, leading them further down the marketing funnel. This is why creating and optimizing your SaaS Inbound marketing strategy is a great method for companies who want to develop long-lasting relationships with customers by leaving a positive influence.
Here are the eleven most effective SaaS inbound marketing strategies, and how you can use them for your brand’s benefit.
Create Landing Pages for Your Features
Your product’s features attract new customers and keep your current ones. However, to make use of these features to the best extent, you need landing pages for each one of them. Having a single page for all of your different features means that you are not using them to their fullest marketing potential. To increase the efficiency of your SaaS inbound marketing strategy, you should branch out to different pages.
These separate landing pages need to be optimized with a landing page analytics tool in a way that will keep the searcher interested so that the feature’s appeal does not fade out. An analytics tool will not only tell you how long users have spent on your page, but also offer deeper insights into the kind of CTAs that proved to be the most effecive for your landing pages.
Creating landing pages for your features is a great inbound strategy because:
- The person on the landing page is interested in the feature to a certain extent and is likely to become a qualified lead,
- A separate page emphasizes the feature’s importance in more detail, cultivating its benefit,
- The landing page leads people into engaging with your brand more.
Create Landing Pages For Your Personas
As an B2B SaaS inbound marketing strategy is about creating targeted content, creating buyer personas and targeting your content towards specific personas is crucial. A MarketingSherpa case study found that using customer personas resulted in a 900% increase in the length of visit.
The persona of your brand is basically the profile of your customers. You need to establish your persona in order to have productive inbound strategies that generate the best results.
Hockeystack is a great tool to analyze your leads and customers’ actions, generating a detailed profile by showing you the journeys of individuals from different referrals and segments etc. What’s more, the dashboards you can create using Hockeystack are completely customizable which means that you’ll be able to track the metrics you think will be most effective for you.
Most businesses have 3 to 4 personas: you need to create landing pages specific to each one of them. A generic landing page isn’t likely to capture all of your different personas just like the same metrics cannot be used to evaluate different marketing campaigns. A specific landing page relates to the visitor and gives them what they are looking for.
You can create individualized landing pages in various ways:
- Focus on different and specific objections
Each one of these personas will have different questions while they’re making a purchase; some may be concerned about the price while others are concerned about the functionality of a product. Answer the objection that is specific to each persona to prevent these questions from coming in the way of a purchase.
2. Fixing the usability in a way that will fit the personas needs
Your personas will almost always be accessing your site from different screen sizes, and certain personas may be less tech-savvy and may need simpler interfaces. Fixing user interface problems would be a good step towards increasing the efficiency of your SaaS inbound marketing strategy because, when your target audience ultimately lands on your product trial or demo pages, you would not want them to be disappointed in what you’re offering.
3. Choosing images or colors that resonate with the persona
Images support your message by making your content relatable and more visually appealing to your target audience. All of these design elements make your landing page more attractive to different demographics and might even be the reason why people stick around on your pages for longer and ultimately make a purchase.
Add FAQs To Blog Posts
Adding a Frequently Asked Questions section to your content can make life easier for both you and your customers.
Some questions about your product are bound to come up often, and addressing these questions promptly over and over again is not only extremely time-consuming but practically impossible. Since 66% of adults think that the most crucial thing about customer service is having the brand value the customer’s time, your leads are not likely to wait around for a response from you before switching to another brand.
Not only is an FAQ section imperative for better customer service, but it is also crucial if you want your brand to have higher rankings in search results.
Between 2018 and 2019, voice search has become the second top search choice (coming right after mobile browsers). This means that rather than saying direct keywords, people are more likely to ask questions, and search engines are putting the sites that give direct answers to the top ranks.
An FAQ section is a great place to answer your leads’ possible questions, and a great way to show them that you’ve thought about their concerns beforehand. However, there are a few points you have to consider in order to make your FAQ section effective.
An effective FAQ section should have:
- Real questions that have been tracked, not questions your brand would like to receive,
- Short and simple answers,
- Information that is consistent with your content,
- Explanations that lead to other links if necessary,
- An effective layout, where it’s easy to find the questions you’re looking for,
- A noticeable place on the content page.
Remember, readers value their time and they need to get the feeling that their time is being respected by you as well. This is why it’s important to remember that your FAQ section is not a great place to re-advertise your product by adding information that’s not directly answering any question.
So, how do you determine the questions you should have on your FAQ section? Start by surveying your users. Ask them about their questions, concerns, and their feedback regarding their experience with you. Track repeated questions or recurring problems and ensure that you’re including answers to them in your FAQ section to ensure that new customers do not have any problems finding the answers they will inevitably need. And, most importantly, measure your FAQ page’s success and update it as needed. If the section is not leading to more engagement with your brand, you may want to add more questions, reevaluate your answers, or change your layout.
Also, keep in mind that your answers should be brief if you want to maximize the benefits you get from search engine optimization. Longer answers might make it harder for you to get to top pages.
Target Content Gaps of Your Competitors
To pull traffic into their sites, brands need to create content that their prospective customers may be looking for. Since many brands are creating content with similar topics, there’s often overlap.
In order to get in front of your competition, you need to find the content that they are not creating, and a content gap is exactly this: content that is wanted but not yet created (or content that is not enough, but we’ll get to that later).
So how does this tactic benefit you? Targeting the content gaps of your competitors is a great SEO tactic that helps you rank above them.
After you use this tactic, you can use an SEO tool to track its results on your organic traffic.
Here are the steps:
- Map out your customer’s journey
This way, you know the content they interact with (or want to interact with) at different stages of their purchase. You also know the keywords that come up at different stages.
Tip: Hockeystack can help you track down their journey in no time.
2. See if all of the needed content has been created
Once you know what your customers are looking for at each stage, see if there’s any content that has already been created to meet their needs. You may do this by using advanced search modifiers. If there’s no content related to what you’re looking for, you have identified a gap.
3. Analyze the existing content
Could you create more meaningful content? Is your competitor’s content outdated? If your answer is yes, you have found another gap: one that will result in your brand ranking better if filled effectively. You could also perform keyword research to see if there is any content that you could rank higher for.
Be a Content Journalist
Creating targeted content is a great inbound strategy, but you need to be consistent for it to be effective. Become a content journalist by being on the lookout for new customer cravings and by quickly creating the needed content.
But are people really curious about new content? Will customers look into your posts? Well, if they are interested in the brand, 68% of online buyers will take the time to read the content that said brand has created.
While reading your content, customers also see that your company’s an expert in its field. Becoming a content journalist is a great way of showing how your brand has in depth knowledge about every aspect of the industry: providing customers with regular information proves that you’re aware of what they are asking, and that you are able to give them answers.
More importantly, having a well-built content archive is crucial for brand recognition and lead generation. Regularly creating content to fill your archive results in increasing the possibility of answering a lead’s need, and leaving your name in their mind with the article they have read from you. This makes them more likely to come back for other services they may need.
To do this, follow other big names in the industry with similar customer profiles to see the areas that they are focusing on. Always be informed about the most recent and popular content, then identify the keywords or topics related to them to make sure your company is also ranking for them.
And lastly, analyze your own content and customer base. Utilize your analytics to see the content that performs the best on your platforms, and identify their common theme. Ask your audience what they want to see more of by surveying them. Once you identify what kind of messaging works best with your target audience, you can also leverage the power of marketing automation to interact with your audience just the way they’d like.
Answer How-to Questions
You may think that some questions related to your field are too basic and that answering them is not worth the fuss. However, if you’re ignoring how-to questions because of this, you’re missing a key opportunity.
People asking how-to questions are at the edge of your sales funnel; they are most likely conducting research about concepts related to what your brand offers and are close to becoming aware of your brand. You have to answer their questions to pull them into your funnel and increase their chances of making a purchase.
Take this example: a customer is searching for ways to improve their marketing reach, so they type out “How to improve your marketing reach” on the search bar. They see an article titled “What is Marketing Reach and How To Improve It,” written by your brand. They click on the article, and now they both see your brand as an educator and feel more knowledgeable.
Now they are ready to search “how to find good marketing metrics to track”, and the next thing you know, they have gathered enough information to understand that they are looking for the service your brand is providing. They trust your brand because they became of it in their research stage. You have successfully transferred a customer in not only the awareness stage but also to the interest stage.
A bonus benefit that comes with how-to posts is that you can rank for long-tail keywords. It may be a little hard for you to rank in popular keywords such as “churn rate,” but it is definitely easier to rank with long-tail keywords such as “(how to) determine customer churn rate in SaaS,” as the second one is much more specific and has comparatively less competition. How-to questions, by targeting customers searching for details, pull meaningful traffic.
Create Comparison Posts
One of the key stages of a buyer’s journey is the consideration stage, where they are comparing your brand’s offerings to the services of your competitors.
In fact, 65% of consumers spend more than 16 minutes on this comparison. The best thing you can do to tip the scale towards your brand is to show them the comparison yourself.
By writing out comparison posts, you are helping your customers feel confident in their choices, and you are getting a good chance to make use of your strong features.
However, there are certain risks involved in comparison posts. Firstly, the reader will be aware of your possible bias, and so, naturally, they will be a little suspicious about your intentions. This is why comparison posts are definitely not the place to exaggerate your brand while dragging your competition down. Tell them the comparison in a simplified and honest way: state facts, not opinions.
Another point to keep in mind is to keep the comparison short and concise. If you compare twenty features, you’re only going to confuse the reader more as they now have to compare the importance of these twenty features. Boil down the comparison into the features that may be detrimental to buyers’ decisions. This way, you don’t have to leave the decision up to the customer in the end.
Distribute Content on Social Media (Not all)
Obviously, your content isn’t valuable if no one reads it. While it’s possible for you to get traffic with SEO, it takes a lot of time to rank for keywords and get visitors. To make your content visible, you need to distribute it on social media.
Ideally, you’ll have several types of content including blog posts, videos, and infographics. Since all of these types of content are so different from each other, you’ll naturally need a different distribution and content promotion strategy for them. That said, purposeful distribution will gain you more meaningful traffic, and you’ll have an easier time analyzing the outcomes.
While developing your strategies, keep in mind that there are several different types of content distribution:
- Owned distribution: when you own the account/the web page and distribute your posts there.
- Earned distribution: when third parties discover your content and share it without expecting anything in return.
- Paid distribution: when you pay third parties to share your content on their accounts.
There are a few things you have to know before you start distributing your content via one of these three ways:
First of all, every platform has a different audience, and each one is interested in different types of content. Users of more visual platforms like Pinterest or Instagram will engage with infographics, while Twitter users will readily engage with quick and concise information in text form.
Secondly, when utilizing social media, you need to measure the number of impressions your posts get, and how these impressions translate. For instance, you need to know if users click on your website after they view your Instagram post. It’s especially important to measure the payback of paid distributions to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth. Make sure to use PPC reports and see if you’re making a good investment by advertising your content on social media.
Publish Guest Blogs On Other SaaS Blogs Targeting Similar Audiences
Another great way of creating brand awareness and getting traffic to your site is by publishing your blog posts on other established blogs. It’s pretty intuitive: if the blog has an engaged audience and serves the same niche as you, the audience is likely to be interested in your posts and your brand too.
Since you are a guest on this other SaaS blog (as the title suggests,) you’ll have to be mindful of their format guidelines and agree on editing your content to some extent. Lastly, just like all the other methods, it’s important to know what you want to achieve and to measure the payback. But overall, if you are able to identify blogs that are willing to collaborate, guest blogging is a fairly easy and effective one and sufficient for your inbound marketing efforts.
Use Email Marketing
If you think that email marketing is overrated, you are wrong. This trusted inbound marketing strategy has the highest ROI out of all other marketing channels and gives back 42$ for every dollar your brand spends on it. There are various types of emails that you may send if you’re using email marketing: welcome emails for new subscribers, email newsletters with educational content, recommendations for new paying customers are just a few of these. This is why many SaaS companies employ email marketing for their inbound marketing.
Here are two important ways you can use these emails:
- Engagement campaigns
You are bound to lose some of your subscribers or customers, but there’s a way to win them back. If done correctly, re-engagement or engagement email sequences can revive inactive subscribers who are simply not engaging with your brand anymore. Like all other methods, however, there are things you have to consider when you try using engagement campaigns for customer retention. For instance, a good engagement campaign should be personalized, have the right messaging, and each email in your chain should give separate and emphasized reasons to the customers to return to your brand.
Tell your customers why they chose you in the first place. Remind them about what’s special about your brand, and maybe lure them in with a couple of promotional emails. Inbound marketing does not end when your customers “end” their relationship with you, try to gain them back.
- Blog Distribution
SaaS marketing is also about constantly looking for resources, and some people are willing to receive emails about your blog just because of this. Sending regular emails about your blog posts makes leads more likely to click on your blog posts to learn more, driving traffic into your site while also potentially converting leads into customers. Once you start sending out your blog distribution mails, don’t forget to measure the engagement by looking at the change in your website traffic (or via other metrics), this is vital for measuring the success of your content marketing strategy.
Audit your current strategy to optimize it
Performing a marketing audit is useful for two reasons: first, if you’ve been struggling to increase your customer engagement or marketing reach, a marketing audit can assess the viability and productivity of your strategy. This will help you focus your energies on areas of improvement and attract more potential customers. Secondly, if your business is new to inbound marketing, you’ll need to re-align your marketing efforts with this new goal in mind. To do this, a marketing audit is necessary.
Here are the steps you should follow to conduct a marketing:
1. List your marketing assets
Before diving into analysis, you need to determine the content marketing campaigns that you’ll optimize. These campaigns include everything, ranging from your blog and social media posts to email newsletters. Once you’ve gathered the campaigns, bring together the necessary data and use them for your inbound marketing tactics.
2. Determine your metrics and goals accordingly
Since inbound marketing is about brand visibility, SEO, customer engagement, and demand generation, there are various metrics that you should use to analyze your assets. These metrics include keyword ranking for blog posts, post engagement for social media, cost of customer acquisition for PPC ads, and so on. Once you know the baselines by which you’ll be measuring success, you should start gathering data and analyzing.
3. Gather data and perform analysis
Gather the data from your marketing campaigns and compare their performance to the goals you had determined earlier. A good analytics tool like HockeyStack can help you analyze the performance of your campaigns based on your key performance indicators.
An inbound marketing audit may also include an industry analysis to see how your business is performing compared to other leading brands. This is important since a big part of inbound marketing is about competition analysis. When you analyze the content that your competition is missing out on, or the keywords they’re ranking for, you have a better idea about the content you should be putting out.
Work on your Ideal Customer Profile
An ideal customer profile describes the customer types that are likely to buy from or engage with your brand. Inbound marketing is all about targeting potential customers who fit into this profile.
But why is this effective?
- Targeted advertising has a better payback because these consumers are already searching for, or are interested in, the solutions your product is offering. That is why businesses with strong ideal customer profiles have 68% higher account win rates than those that do not.
- Not only do these consumers have lower CACs, they are also more easily retained and usually more loyal to your brand.
- Some leads are simply not worth your sales teams time and money because of predetermined factors such as business size, revenue and industry. Knowing the leads that fit into your profile saves you from wasting resources.
In order to target your marketing campaigns to the right consumers, you’ll first need to define this ideal profile. There are a few criteria to keep in mind while doing this:
- Demographics and Psychographics: job title, income, age, etc. are all included in demographics. Goals, pain points and interests are included in psychographics. Though these criteria are more appropriate for individual users’ profiles, they still come into play for businesses.
- Budgets: What should an ideal consumer’s income be in order to work with your brand? How much revenue should a business have to become a long term subscriber? These are all questions to keep in mind while creating your profiles.
- Behaviours: Purchasing history, product usage and loyalty are the criteria under behaviours. These also apply to both individuals and corporations.
Once you know the demographic, budget, and behavior of an ideal customer, you can direct your marketing campaigns to the right audience. It’s important to make these profiles as detailed as possible and to update them frequently because as your company grows and changes, your ideal customer does too. Once you have the profiles you need, make sure that your content and ads are solving their specific pain points and addressing their custom interests. Once you’ve done this, you can establish a trustworthy and knowledgeable stance in the industry while also creating brand awareness for quality leads.
Do content and keyword research based on the sales funnel
As I’ve mentioned before, customers at different stages have different needs. Based on this fact, you should predict that they’re searching for different terms and content at each stage as well.
- Consumers at the awareness stage are looking for a basic solution to their problems. For instance, a SaaS brand at this stage may enter the following words into their search bar: “High Customer Churn Issue.” What they’re doing in this case is looking for a brand that may educate them on this problem. The brand that does this first, and in the most effective way, will stick to the mind of this SaaS brand.
- At the consideration stage, this SaaS brand has learned about possible solutions to the high customer churn issue. They know that they should be using a good analytics tool to survey users, but they don’t know which one. Here, they’re likely to search “SaaS Churn Survey Tool.“
- Once they’ve familiarized themselves with the tools that came up in their research, they’ll start to consider purchasing one. Here, their searches will look like “X Surveys versus Y Surveys” or “X Analytics Pros and Cons.”
Since the keywords at each stage are obvious, your content should target and use said words to come up in consumers’ searches. This is how inbound marketing ensures brand visibility. By publishing blog posts, webinars, and any other content that uses these words and using the right SEO tools, you can make use of the sales funnel in your inbound marketing strategy.
Publish quality content at a high velocity to build authority
Content marketing is a vital strategy for inbound marketing. With a good content marketing strategy, your business may secure its place on the first pages of search engines, and establish its name in the industry as a knowledgeable resource. However, having such authority isn’t as easy as it may sound. As countless businesses are following similar content marketing strategies, you have to keep up with the most important keywords, article titles, comparison posts, etc. to make sure that you’re not falling back.
You have to be publishing content consistently and at a high pace, but not any content. It should be of good quality since you don’t want consumers to just click and leave. So how can you have a fast and quality content strategy? I have a more detailed guide to content marketing, but the key points are to:
- Have an editorial timeline,
- Choose the right distrubution channels and an effective distribution strategy,
- Have solution-oriented content rather than product-oriented,
- Measure performance and optimize content accordingly.
By following these steps and sticking to your timeline, you’ll build authority within your sector by popping up at every search and keyword.
Optimize your content for conversions
You’ve stuck to your timeline, you’ve published content using the right keywords, you’ve targeted it at your ideal customer profile, and you have a pretty solid strategy. What now? Well, you may have still not reached your ultimate goal: converting potential customers.
To increase conversions, there are a few things you can do:
- Use conversion monitoring: view users’ on-page clicks and interactions to understand how they’re engaging with your content. An easily integrated tool like HockeyStack can help you view sessions in no time.
- Optimize CTAs: the CTAs shouldn’t be intrusive, but they shouldn’t be ignorable either. Use phrases such as subscribe, join, claim, and learn more to increase engagement, and analyze how your CTAs perform as well.
- Competitor analysis: getting some inspiration from other businesses never harms anyone. See how they have structured their landing pages, what they’ve done to increase engagement, and which CTAs they have used.
- Use Tools: AI chatbots and surveys are great tools to increase engagement. Making use of them could make the difference.
Don’t forget that these techniques can be used both for new and old content. You can always update your existing content to cultivate its benefits. In fact, I would go so far as to say that your inbound marketing efforts are dependent on updating older content, thus reproducing it in a way.
Measure Inbound Marketing’s Success with HockeyStack
In order to understand which blog post or marketing channel brings the highest quality leads in terms of LTV or MRR, or to better understand which one brings the most engaged users, you can use a code-free tool like HockeyStack to minimize the time and effort involved in analysis.
HockeyStack is an end-to-end analytics tool for SaaS companies. With HockeyStack, you can track and analyze data from the product, sales, subscription revenue, and marketing in one tool and get access to hidden insights, such as the LTV of a piece of content, or the churn rate of each marketing channel along with users’ reasons for churn.
In short, inbound marketing is a productive content marketing strategy for SaaS businesses because of its ability to generate qualified leads with low CACs. It’s about creating targeted marketing campaigns that provide visibility and awareness for your brand. To get started, you should first audit your current marketing strategy and align it with your inbound marketing goals. Then, you should define the profile that you’ll be reaching with your campaigns/content. Once you’ve done enough research on the keywords that you’ll use, you can start publishing content and see the traffic coming right in.
Inbound marketing is a type of content marketing method that pulls potential customers towards your brand by creating engaging and targeted content.
Email marketing, regularly creating blog posts about topics in your niche, distributing your blog posts on social media are some examples of inbound marketing strategies.
Inbound marketing is more purposeful and productive––it generates more qualified leads by reaching out to people who are already interested in your brand’s field.
Outbound marketing puts your product out there to get some people interested, while inbound marketing advertises your brand to people who are actively searching for a service similar to yours. Outbound marketing is the opposite of inbound marketing.