The 7 Deadly Sins of SaaS Marketing – Lust
Sin number five is lust. Don’t fall in love with every prospect. While it’s important to listen to customers as an aggregate, don’t jump at every request. Know your target buyer audience better than you know yourself, and focus on them. If you try to be everything to everyone and make your product appeal to every buyer, your business will be a giant mess of features with incongruent content that won’t fit together. Your customers won’t know who you are, or what you offer.
Some of your potential buyers just aren’t going to be the right fit. That’s okay! It’s a positive because you can then further hone in on the niches and groups of buyers that will choose your business and buy your product. Targeting, personalization, and specificity create more growth than casting a net a wide net for random fish. Go diving for lobsters instead.
Building Your Buyer Persona
First and foremost, focus on the buyers you best serve. You can do this with marketing personas–a great way to determine your most valuable, and potentially loyal customers.
Marketing personas, or buyer personas, are data-driven representations of your ideal buyer. They help boost sales, improve customer service, and sustain product development.
You can have 73% higher conversion rates by using marketing personas compared to SaaS companies that play guessing games and don’t use their data. Are you wasting your data right now?
Start With the Evidence
Okay, so who is your ideal buyer? Don’t guess and check. You need your buyer personas to be backed by numbers, quantifiable and developed with data. Develop your personas with input from as many departments as possible, because your users will likely interact with most, if not all, of your departments during their buying journey.
Start with making sure you are researching your buyers, not your end-users. They are different audiences. You are not focusing this effort on product development, but the buying journey of your decision-maker.
Look into the data you collect from your current customers. Ask your sales team and customer service team for their buyer data. Interview your current clients, and ask for feedback from your most loyal fans.
Explore your competitors’ users and their social media followers. What complaints do they have, and how do you address them with your business? Don’t base your personas entirely on data from other companies with a similar product or audience. But this can be a starting point if you don’t have extensive insight into your buyers yet. You will still need to focus on why your buyers specifically decide to buy from your business.
Use google analytics, and campaign performance analytics to see how your buyers respond to your content. Explore lead-scoring behaviors.
With surveys, you can secure even more extensive and insightful data. Through short, simple questions you can determine the most important features for different potential buyers. You can identify their objections in the buying process and adjust to reassure them through their journey.
Ask for Feedback
The most important question in this process: what are your buyers’ greatest problems and how do you solve them? If you don’t know the answer, ask your most loyal customers.
Reach out to the loyalists and fans that love your product. Use social media, email, or even make a phone call. Personalize this outreach, and ask why they bought your product. By asking why, your customers can explain their reasoning, motivations, and emotions in their buying process.
Now begin to collect and organize the data you need to build your buyer personas.
Understand your buyers’ demographics. Look back to our blog on the importance of feedback, and you’ll see that feedback data can be extremely useful for honing in on your most positive promoters’ characteristics. Use this data to determine which buyers you should try to reach. Research where they live, their age, their education, their work experience, and what features they use most in your product.
Evaluate Markets and Job Functions
Think about what industry your product serves. Do you help multiple industries? Don’t search for prospects outside of the industries you help. If you help more than one, make sure your efforts are specific to each unique industry. You can have a main, problem-solving selling point, but how you connect with a business person or a nonprofit employee will be different. Personalize for your different potential buyers.
Consider the role of your buyer in their company. What’s their part in the lead acquiring process? If you are interacting with buyers from different departments, the language you use should vary. Differentiate your content and interface for different role players.
Most importantly, as we said in the beginning, you must know what problems you are solving for your users. What are their biggest pain points, and what are your solutions? Determine how users run into this frustration each day, and why they are looking for help. You can use this information in email marketing, and to increase closing percentages.
Bring Your Personas to Life
Where do your potential buyers obtain information? Where do they spend their time online? On social media, blogs, informational websites or publication platforms? This information will help you know where to promote your content and the most effective content form.
Give your personas names to make them personal and easy to reference. Even add a stock photo so you have an image of them in mind.
The magic number of buyer personas is 3-5. Too many personas make it hard to personalize your messaging to potential ideal buyers, and too few may mean you aren’t specific or differentiating between your buyers enough.
Optimize your feedback loop to constantly improve and specify your personas.
After you have determined the background of your persona, consider how they will purchase your product. What’s their modality? There are four main types of buyer modalities: competitive (fast with logic), spontaneous (fast with emotion), methodical (slow with logic), and humanistic (slow with emotion).
The SaaS buying process is usually slower because buyers go through many department levels before purchase decisions are finalized. Your buyers will mostly be slow and logical, or, what Eisenberg Customer Modality would describe as methodical.
You will probably be selling to large corporations and medium-sized companies. But you may also have buyers that are entrepreneurs, sole proprietors, or members of small startups. The way they buy can be different, and it’s important to keep the differences in their experience in mind.
Remember, end-users probably have very little to do with those making the buying decisions. Focus your marketing personas on your buyers, and how you can encourage them to choose you. Direct your energy on making this process as easy and compelling for these buyer personas as possible.
Your first buyers probably won’t be your target buyers. That’s also okay. Focus on developing your personas for the ideal buyers your business will acquire in the future.