If you’re offering a SaaS (Software as a Service) and you’re having difficulty with the marketing, here are some useful strategies to help you promote your service and begin making money through it:
1. You should provide the basic account at no cost to get new sign-ups. After they have tried the service and developed an interest, they are more likely to upgrade to paid models.
2. You should have at minimum two levels of upgrade. Everybody doesn’t want to upgrade to the highest level , and Engineering Lead time psychologists suggest that ‘1 level below the level of the top’ is the most well-known option.
3. Find out an open spot in your area of expertise and make sure you rule it. Do you have a service that is the easiest and fastest? You have to find out what makes your service unique – the differentiation. Disput about it.
4. Create blogs and write regular blog posts. Here are some suggestions to help you decide the topics to write about: why did you create the service, who are the best users (not names, just the type or segment), how many users have signed up and what tools you employed in the development process and why, why are you still in beta , or why did you go out of beta? What publications or blogs have mentioned you and your services (thank you to these publications or blogs)? Share something about the expertise of your team on this subject – are you a CPA/CA? There are a myriad of topics to write about.
5. Links to blogs from their account home page. This is crucial to maintain a consistent conversation with your existing clients without sending out emails often.
6. Create a feedback page on each account’s home page. You can ask them their thoughts about their favorite or most utilized features. Also , ask the users what their biggest pet peeves are and get them to sort them out. You’ll be shocked to see the results. The features you have been pushing so hard may not be the most important thing to them.
7. Put some time into the basics SEO of your website. You must be found by search engines before they sign up.
8. Run some low cost promotions. Advertise in magazines for industry. Advertise on industry blogs.
9. Use extremely targeted ads for AdWords or Facebook. This can cost you money but will generate a quick number of sign-ups. It can also help you identify a good marketing pitch by running A/B split-tests on the web page’s content.
10. No marketing is free. Even SEO. You’re basically trading the time you spend and your money.
11. It is necessary to market even free services. Gone are the days when you could say “Build your business and people will come”.
12. Find advocates who will talk about your software on their website, blog or on forums.
13. Run an affiliate program. Affiliates can really advertise your product and are required to be paid when the sale is made. Give them plenty of promotional material.
14. Present presentations to various chambers of commerce , or Internet users’ club (NeN, TiE, Nasscom chapters) on the benefits from your product. Keep it pitch free, only offering a short introduction at the conclusion.
This will help you get started and pick-up a good momentum in marketing your SaaS. Best wishes