Drive demand and adoption of your SaaS product through product marketing.
The SaaS landscape is full of opportunities… but it is also full of competitors. Companies looking to gain a sustainable footprint in this profitable market need to grow quickly to claim the market. Product marketing may appear challenging, but with the right know-how building a winning strategy can have a huge impact on the success of your product.
Find out the impact of product marketing, how it can drive your bottom line and influence the growth of your business.
What is product marketing?
Product marketing is the process of introducing a product to the market, promoting it and selling it to a customer. Product marketing involves understanding the product’s target audience, developing the positioning and messaging of it to appeal to that audience, and using strategic messaging to generate revenue and boost demand for the product. Indeed, why develop something that no one wants?
A product marketer is the one who sets the stage for a product launch therefore handling customer development, establishing the company’s positioning in the industry and writing messages such as announcements. The work of a product marketer is at the center of a company’s marketing, sales and product teams.
Why is product marketing important?
Product marketing is an essential part of any company’s marketing strategy. Without it, your product will not reach its maximum potential with your target audience. Here are some examples of what product marketing can do for you:
- Help you better understand your customers
- Efficiently target your buyer personas
- Get to know your competitors
- Make sure marketing, product and sales teams are on the same page
- Position the product correctly in the market
- Grow revenue and improve sales
Adopting a product marketing strategy will help you ask the good questions regarding your product. Asking these questions will make sure your product is a success with customers.
- Is our product right for today’s market?
- Is our product right for today’s customers?
- How is our product unique from similar products from our competitors?
- Is there a way to further differentiate our product from our competitors’ products?
- Are there any products we have sold in the past that we would never market or sell again, now that we look back? If so, why not?
Product marketing duties
- Build buyer personas
First of all, you need to define your product’s target audience and buyer personas. The buyer persona is a member of your target group, a fictitious profile based on real data. The profile of the buyer persona is built on lots of inputs, feedback and information coming from your prospects.This is the first step in marketing your product. By first understanding your customers, their needs, challenges and pain points, you can ensure that all aspects of your product marketing strategy are tailored to that target customer and persona. This audience is specific to your product/service. This way, the product and your marketing content created for the product will all appeal to your audience.
If you understand your personas well, you will know their real and most important pain points.Therefore you will be able to offer them very valuable contents because these free articles, case studies, etc are highly specific and highly targeted to these pain points.
To create a buyer persona is not that difficult. Just think about it as a buyer and not as a marketer. You need something that will help you save time by simplifying one of your activities.
Step 1: Think about the average buyers in your target group. Take an A4 sheet and draft the essential information about them.
Step 2: Gather the relevant information you have. For example, what kind of free content did they download, what did they buy, did they register? This will allow you to draw conclusions about their pain points.
Step 3: Discuss the topic with your colleagues by brainstorming with relevant people in your company, such as customer success managers, sales representatives, etc.
Step 4: Don’t worry if you have more buyer personas after the process. But always use only valid data and confirm the assumptions you made via a clear form.
Step 5: Keep in mind that developing your buyer personas is an ongoing, progressive process that is never finished, just like product marketing itself.
- Determine the positioning and write the messages
After you have done your customer research and learned about your audience, you will need to determine the positioning and write the messages that will make your product stand out. Your messages should reflect how your product solves your customers’ problems. But that won’t be enough. After all, your competitors are necessarily meeting your customers’ needs as well. So you’ll need to differentiate yourself from them.
The key to differentiating your product is positioning and messaging. These must answer the key questions your customers may have about your product and what makes it unique. But, make sure your customers and audience know the answers to these questions and don’t have to search for them. To do this, ask yourself the right questions:
• What makes our product unique?
• Why is our product better than our competitors’?
• Why are the features of our product ideal for our target audience?
• What will our customers get from our product that they can’t get from our competitors’ products?
• Why should our customers trust us and invest in our product?
Once you’ve answered these questions, you can compile these answers into a single, impactful, shareable statement that reflects your overall positioning and message. Turn the answers to the positioning and messaging questions into an elevator pitch, using action words to excite your customers, and make sure the tone of your statement reflects the tone of your brand, focusing on the benefits of your product as a whole.
Then make sure that the sales, product and marketing teams are communicating the same information to prospects and current customers. Your entire company should be consistent in sharing information about your product.
- Define SaaS marketing model and pricing strategy
There are 2 big factors that influence your business model and marketing strategy: the price of your service and the complexity of your offer.
If you have high prices (for instance your clients pay you half million USD per sale) you have to manage a lot of reactions and fears of your clients: Purchasing requires high commitment from you customers, which needs high trust level in your company, which means personal meetings and less number of deals in a certain period of time. Therefore it is logical that you have to work with sales reps in order to sell.
But if you have lower prices (for example 99 USD/month) you don’t have to meet your prospects personally. It requires lower commitment from them (the amount of money you ask from them is not that scary at all), therefore you don’t need high trust level. You can automate your processes to bring in high volume and do business almost automatically, online.
Your service is not necessarily complex if it is from the technology perspective. We can have a complex technological solution BUT whose BENEFITS are very simple to understand for prospects. So complexity here means that your prospects can shortly and easily understand the benefit you provide and it doesn’t require a big effort from them to use it.
For example, if you offer an ERP system, you have to ask your customers to change their processes and work on the integration for months. This means that your sales velocity will be lower. Converting prospects into customers will take much longer, and the sales efforts will result in fewer closed deals. The cost of acquisition will therefore be higher and accompanied by more support. Why is this? Because your customers have to invest a lot to achieve the desired result with your service. This requires a high level of commitment and, therefore, a high level of trust in your company.
But if your product is “simple”: it is easy to understand its real value, and your prospects can easily use it, your sales cycle will be much shorter. You’ll have more deals closed in a certain amount of time, less support work, lower acquisition cost, etc.
- If your product is more complex, you have to ask for more money and you will end up in less closed deals.
- If your product is less complex, you can have a lower pricing strategy and in return, you’ll have higher sales volume.
- Build sales and marketing materials
This is the internal launch of your product. You will need to make sure that the entire company is on the same page regarding your product. This way, your customers will only receive consistent and accurate information about your product.
Your company’s marketing, product and sales teams should specifically be aware of the following information:
• Your product’s positioning
• The benefits of your product
• Your buyer personas and ideal customers
• Your product demonstration
• The objectives of your product
• The features of your product
• The price of your product
• Customer onboarding process
• Sales training opportunities on your product
To share this information with your colleagues, you can for example create sales support kits, presentations, brochures, white papers, product documentation, etc.
- Plan external go-to-market strategy
So now it’s all about launching your product externally. This means that you will inform your current customer base, your prospects and your target audience about your product launch. You will then refine your strategy and depending on your needs, objectives and resources, you will focus your marketing efforts on certain channels such as:
• The homepage of your website
• Social Media
• Your Blog
• A trade show
• An event organized for the launch of your product
• An exclusive preview for early adopters of your product
• Promotional campaigns
You will include in these different channels, relevant information about your product, focused on your positioning and your message, so that prospects and customers can know everything about your product and why they need it.
• Features of your product
• What makes it unique
• Customer demonstrations
• Customer training
- Drive demand and usage of the product
Now it’s time to drive demand and grow your user base.
The “secret sauce” of product marketing is to reverse how you think about your conversion funnel for your prospects.
We can break the funnel into six parts:
• Marketing Qualified Lead
• Sales Qualified Lead
Create seamless product marketing funnels for your prospects: Think in a reverse funnel.
Most importantly, don’t start by creating teasers and content! Instead, start thinking from the bottom of the funnel, so you can build a funnel that is truly seamless for your prospects.
Start by thinking about your customer and, more importantly, what your product solves for them!
• What problems does it solve with what features?
• What are the most used features?
• Are there stand-alone, “less complex” features used by more customers and solve specific problems?
• What are the particular problems that are related to this stand-alone functionality?
Today, the SaaS application development industry promises excellent business opportunities for the software industry. However, technologies and customer demands are constantly changing. Building a product marketing strategy will help you combine the advantages of customer success, product development and inbound marketing, and change the perspectives!
Ready to grow your SaaS business like never before? Contact us to schedule a demo.