Most SaaS companies pull prospect lists, cold call and email potential leads, and run expensive ad campaigns in the race to capture market share.
But these approaches work but are difficult to scale.
SaaS inbound marketing is the sustainable growth strategy that can ramp up revenue and slash CAC (Customer Acquisition Costs).
What Is SaaS Inbound Marketing?
SaaS inbound marketing is the practice of broadcasting content to attract qualified customers.
The main focus of Inbound marketing for SaaS companies are:
- Delivering valuable content to people who are already looking for solutions to problems your SaaS solves.
- Growing an audience of prospects that can be nurtured into paying customers.
- Creating campaigns, promotions, and other activities that generate organic leads from your target audience.
- Building your online brand to establish trust and credibility in the eyes of potential buyers, partners, and investors.
- Ranking high on search engines for the unique and specific search queries related to your product and industry.
Inbound marketing activities usually include content creation, SEO optimization, social media engagement, email marketing, and online advertising.
B2B SaaS buyers are 57% to 70% through their research before contacting sales. SaaS inbound marketing can warm up your leads and make them easier to convert.
SaaS Inbound Marketing Strategies That Actually Get Customers
Successful inbound marketing 95% of the time starts with SEO.
Create Content Designed For SEO
You need to create high-quality content that answers customer questions, says something unique about your brand, and ranks in search engines.
First – understand search intent and the problems searchers are trying to solve.
Here’s a quick overview of the different content types and how they’ll shape your appearance on search engines:
- Blog posts. Starting with bottom-of-funnel (BoFu) content (e.g., competitor comparisons, alternatives, and reviews) will capture your high-intent search traffic. Moving up the funnel and publishing case studies, product features, and tutorials showing how to solve business problems with your SaaS will draw more people in.
- Videos, podcasts, and webinars. Videos are the most engaging form of content, increasing your visitors’ time on site and lowering the bounce rate. You can also record podcasts, webinars, and live-streaming sessions to drive a steady flow of organic leads into your sales pipeline.
- Landing pages. Your different product and comparison pages should be optimized for SEO, but don’t forget to create content-rich pages that are designed specifically to convert leads into customers.
- Research. Every SaaS company that’s killing the content game publishes its own reports, statistics, and surveys. This content helps organizations build their reputations, but it also helps them secure backlinks from other site owners, who can use these insights to support their own arguments.
Not all of your content will garner tons of traffic—and that’s okay.
We see this happen all the time: A blog post with 10 organic visitors can turn into a new $100,000 contract when the content captures the right readers.
Splinter And Repurpose
Splintering and repurposing refer to the process of breaking down a larger piece of content, such as a long-form blog post, into smaller, more digestible pieces of content.
The benefit of doing this is twofold:
- You can redistribute the same content across multiple channels to increase visibility and engagement.
- Repurposing can maximize touchpoints while saving time and improving efficiency.
For example, one blog post can turn into:
- Podcast episodes
- Short-form posts on LinkedIn
- Shorter-form posts on Twitter
Repurposing content helps your brand maintain consistent messaging without having to do the hard work every time.
Have you ever noticed how other SaaS companies get their products to appear in other businesses’ apps or services?
Integrating with third-party tools and platforms effectively gets your product in front of more leads.
Besides the marketing benefits, integrations also make it easier for customers to use your product, meaning they’ll see your platform as an extension of their current tech stack, rather than a separate solution that’s impossible to configure.
One powerful example is Zapier—a tool that allows users to automate tasks between web apps. Many SaaS organizations enable Zapier integration, allowing users to connect their tools and streamline their workflows.
By doing so, they provide more value to their existing users and expose their products to a larger pool of prospects who use Zapier to automate their workflows.
Run Paid Ads
Running paid ads can be powerful and here’s why:
- You can test keyword value before investing in link building and search engine optimization.
- You can send targeted traffic to specific landing pages and test different elements of your website for conversion.
- You can use retargeting ads to lower customer acquisition costs.
Be aware that running paid ads can be costly. And since it only works as long as you continue to fund it, SEO has a greater long-term ROI.
Influencer marketing is a popular strategy that 93% of marketers use.
According to Gartner research, B2B buyers spend the vast majority of their time looking to peers and trusted online sources for advice when researching products, as opposed to 17% of their time talking with suppliers.
People buy from people. If you can leverage someone else’s loyal audience – it’s much easier to get customers.
Here are a few ways that B2B SaaS companies can leverage influencer marketing to promote their products:
- Work with industry veterans. If someone has already built an audience that trusts and respects their opinions, their endorsement of your product can boost sales almost immediately.
- Get on social media. LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and even TikTok are powerful tools for connecting with influencers and building relationships with their audiences.
- Partner with micro-influencers. While celebrity influencers may have large followings, they have considerably lower engagement rates. According to Meltwater data, micro-influencers comprise 91% of the market share and are more cost-effective.
- Offer value to influencers. Giving them access to exclusive content, providing them with early access to new features, or paying them a sales commission incentivizes their advocacy for your product.
- Leverage user-generated content. User-generated content (UGC) amplifies the reach of your content and establishes social proof that your product is worth using, according to 86% of millennials.
Ask For Referrals
If there’s anything more powerful than a trusted influencer recommendation, it’s a personal one from a friend or colleague.
Referrals are one of the most cost-effective ways to generate qualified leads and organically grow your SaaS business. And 92% of customers trust referrals over any other form of advertising.
To make referrals easy for your customers:
- Set up a quick landing page.
- Provide them with marketing collateral.
- Offer bonuses and discounts to partners and customers who refer new leads.
Include a referral link in each of your customer onboarding emails, asking satisfied customers to share their experience with others who might benefit from using your SaaS solution.
Start an Affiliate Program
There’s a lot of easy wins here.
Affiliates agree to market your product in exchange for a commission on any sales they drive to your site. These costs are usually much lower than paid ads.
You can even provide them with promotional materials, like banners and content pieces, to help them market your product more effectively.
Think of it like done-for-you content marketing.
How do you implement inbound marketing for Saas?
To capture your entire inbound marketing funnel, you’ll have to create a mix of content and campaigns to attract, convert, close, and delight your prospects.
Work with a SaaS SEO agency.
SaaS marketing is tough, and most SaaS businesses don’t have an internal team for link building, content optimization, and SEO best practices.
A reputable SaaS SEO agency takes the hard work and confusion off your plate and helps you set up an effective inbound marketing strategy with measurable success.
Experiment with paid channels.
It takes around eight touchpoints from product discovery to conversion, and they won’t all come from SEO and cold calls.
Your sales funnel needs to be optimized for multiple channels, which means utilizing social media and paid search to get your message across.
Some SaaS companies will even run paid campaigns using their competitors’ brand names as keywords to “steal” some of their organic traffic, making PPC a form of insurance, if nothing else.
Double down on what works.
No SaaS inbound marketing strategy is set in stone. It requires an iterative approach and frequent testing of different tactics and channels.
Run experiments, track their success, and double down on the ones that work best for your business.
SaaS Inbound Marketing Tips
Software companies face unique challenges when it comes to inbound marketing—longer sales cycles, multiple stakeholders, and complex purchasing decisions make the process less straightforward than for other industries.
Here are a few tips to help you start:
No one channel works best.
Inbound marketing is all about meeting your buyers where they are.
Maybe they consistently engage with your email list.
Maybe they look up your content on Google.
Maybe they’re all on LinkedIn and Twitter.
In reality, they’re probably all over the web. The end goal of your inbound marketing strategy is finding exactly where they are and providing them with the content they’re looking for.
Invest in content early.
Out of all the inbound marketing tactics, content marketing will get you some of the fastest wins.
83% of SaaS blog traffic comes from organic search. And the average SaaS business spends $24,000 to $48,000 per year on SEO.
You won’t outrank the most prominent SaaS industry players overnight. But you can get some quick conversions from BoFu content and lay the groundwork for long-term success by spending some of your first dollars on content marketing.
Don’t ignore social media.
94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to build brand awareness and generate leads.
Because that’s where 80% of B2B leads are generated. And over half of the decision-makers you’d like to target are active on the platform.
Twitter is another powerful tool for B2B marketing—more than half of Twitter users are likely to be among the first to buy new products (including your software).
Twitter’s conversational nature makes it ideal for SaaS businesses to engage with their buyers through meaningful conversations.
Use inbound marketing to drive customer retention.
You might not realize it, but your existing customers will continue to use your content for their own research.
If your software is built on a microservices architecture, you can use your content to upsell additional features or solutions.
You can also use it to educate buyers on how to get the most out of your product, ensuring they get the most value possible out of it.
Build Your SaaS Inbound Marketing Strategy With Linkflow
Even if you have a few pieces to win the SaaS inbound marketing game, you probably don’t have the time or resources to build links, optimize your content, and continuously develop your online presence.
Save your marketing manager the headache.