All businesses start out as great ideas. You come up with a piece of software that fills a gap in the market. You have confidence that your ingenious offering is going to wow customers. So you spend your budget on advertising, promotion, and lead generation tactics to create awareness. As soon as everyone knows who you are and what you do, they'll be lining up to buy – right? The enthusiasm is high, and the expectations even more so. According to Gartner, SaaS revenue is set to reach $278 billion by 2021– hugely encouraging figures for anyone trying to stake a claim to a slice of that pie.
But what happens when your profit margins don't line up?
With software products, in particular, slow growth is a significantly discouraging indicator. Perhaps you have a high free trial sign-up rate that only leads to churn after a month. Or maybe you've just started to break even – hooray! However, with so many new competitors, it's a struggle to keep investing in the continuous upgrades required to beat rivals.
In the unlikely event that you haven’t already discovered this for yourself, SaaS sales are pretty cutthroat. For example, a 20% growth rate might be fantastic news for some businesses, but for software companies, this means a 92% chance of ceasing to exist in a few years. Mckinsey goes as far as to say that "Growth matters more than margin or cost structure." Of course, it does. What SaaS business doesn't want to be the next Amazon or Facebook, chomping on the competition for breakfast? But what if you're stuck in a rut, flitting between fad marketing strategies and wondering when your big break is coming? Heck, you may not even realise that you're doing it.
Well, we have some news. In fact, Jeff Bezos himself would agree. Your focus needs to shift to long-term growth. Short term gains and exploitation of low hanging fruit will not secure your future in a content-driven, relationship economy. Many SaaS businesses understand that growth is essential, but they can't get out of the rapid rise and crushing decline loop – until the money runs out, that is.
Which leads to the question: How do you grow sustainably, at scale?
As expert growth strategists for software companies, we've gained deep insights into the shortfalls that often sabotage SaaS businesses. Our learnings have driven us to create a practical framework for delivering results through research, testing, and applied inbound methodology. We package this concept as the GamePlan.
What is the GamePlan?
Whenever a new client reaches out to us, we embark on a bit of a journey of discovery – for us, and the client. We'll pop the hood on all of their current marketing activities and come up with a clear picture of the business's current market position.
Once we have all the information, we identify the ideal buyer personas for the business and what marketing activities are going to help to address these customers' needs. The entire process is centred around carving out achievable targets and giving the client (and us) a good understanding of what has to be accomplished.
The GamePlan will not only outline the steps you must take to increase conversions, but also the necessary tools you need to achieve these results and the sequence your content release needs to follow to nurture your buyer personas effectively.
The success behind our GamePlan is down to the genuine effort we put into being transparent about what we do and applying a goal-driven approach to growing SaaS businesses. This helps us to build strong relationships based on trust and compatibility.
We're not here to sell ice to Eskimos; we want to help your customers to get real value from using your software so that they will continue to return to your brand time and time again.
Why the GamePlan works for SaaS sales
As we've established, SaaS comes with its own set of unique marketing challenges. You're dealing with a multi-dimensional, intangible product that may have a very complex buy-in process. For example, B2B SaaS products can be costly investments at an enterprise level, meaning you have a longer sales cycle and more layers of buyer approval to get through.
The Klood GamePlan will help you to really hone in on your brand's story so that it translates into the content and marketing messages you communicate. This proactive approach to educating your customer will smooth out the kinks in your pipeline and bring in faster results.
It's integral for the GamePlan to be built on current information. We'll launch campaigns and initiate lead generating strategies, but these will be frequently analysed and A/B tested to ensure that you are making real-time, relevant decisions about how your budget is allocated and what can be done to keep your business on course as challenges arise. This agile approach to studying key metrics and continuously enhancing your digital marketing efforts fits in with the evolving demands of the SaaS industry.
Ultimately, your software product can't be everything to everyone. And that's not a bad thing. With a carefully mapped out GamePlan, you will have a realistic vision of who your target audience is and how, by doing what you're already fantastic at, you can convert those leads into evangelists and happy, paying customers and subscribers. Aligning your sales and marketing activities through a GamePlan will reduce your costs and increase your retention rates, allowing you to focus on innovation and staying competitive and authoritative in your industry.
Finding the right-fit marketing agency could make all the difference to how your SaaS company performs a year on from now. From experience, we know that a strategic GamePlan offers tangible ROI for our clients. So if you have any questions about the Klood GamePlan and how it could become the cornerstone to your SaaS success, give us a call today.
Are you ready for a GamePlan?
2 Minute Self Assessment and report