Over the last couple of years, SaaS (software as a service) lead generation strategies have changed significantly. Consumers are more demanding and have higher expectations from vendors. Before making a purchase and committing to a business, consumers research the product they intend on purchasing extensively. They compare alternatives, look for online reviews, check out YouTube videos, and consider their friends’, peers’, and colleague’s opinions.
As such, SaaS businesses have to adapt their lead generation strategies to bring in relevant leads that can be converted into paying customers. It’s no longer about flashy advertising, but rather about quality content, personalization, value, visibility, and optimization.
In this post, we’ll outline the best lead generation strategies for SaaS businesses, and explain why they work. Let’s get started!
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1. Create Quality Blog Content to Generate SaaS Leads
Creating blog content and establishing yourself as an expert in your niche is a great way to generate new leads.
The key to success is to create unique content that your existing and potential customers will find helpful. Your blog posts should include focus keywords and strong calls-to-action (CTAs) complete with links to your most important landing pages (think free trial page, pricing page, alternatives comparison, or case studies.) It’s important to be posting new content consistently, ideally about 2-3 times a week to ensure a steady flow of traffic to your blog.
If your existing customers find your blog content educational, the more likely they are to share it with their peer networks, generating relevant leads for you. Additionally, the more optimized your blog content is, the higher it will rank in Google search results, directing potential customers to your blog as well.
Premium blog content
Premium blog content such as eBooks or eGuides are a great way to generate new leads for your SaaS business. In essence, premium content should be valuable and provide your customers with unique research, facts, and best practices that they can implement into their day-to-day operations.
This type of premium content should be accessible to customers in exchange for their email address or contact information only. The contact information should then be placed into your CRM and sales pipeline so your sales representatives can reach out and continue conversion efforts through other channels.
Repurpose old content
If you’ve created a blog post that was very successful in driving traffic to your site and generating new leads in the past, you should consider updating and repurposing it.
Create a podcast, film a video, or write an eBook about the same topic to generate more views and leads at the same time.
Utilize guest posting
Guest posting is another great method to ensure a steady stream of traffic and new leads. In essence, guest posting is all about picking a high-quality blog or site and writing a guest post for them. As a general rule of thumb, guest sites allow you to incorporate one or two links into your article that will link back to your website.
These backlinks ensure that the guest blog’s audience (that might not be familiar with your product otherwise) will be able to read about your company’s product from a source that they trust, giving them more incentive to check out your website and product.
2. Integrate With Other SaaS Products for Relevant Lead Generation
Integrating with other SaaS products that compliment your software is one of the fastest ways to generate new leads. Imagine your product is a live chat software, and you want to integrate it with a different company’s CRM software. Once integrated, the existing users of the CRM software will notice that a tool that they use daily is now compatible with your live chat software. If they currently use a live chat software that doesn’t support this kind of integration, they might be inclined to switch over to you.
If you’re not sure which SaaS products you should integrate with, ask your customer base. They’ll give you insight into which apps/products they use daily in addition to yours, and what integrations would improve their workflows.
Approaching other SaaS companies in hopes of future collaborations and integrations should be easy, as both companies should recognize the value of integrating their respective products together.
3. Offer a Free Trial of Your SaaS Product
As a part of the research process that customers undergo to pick the right software solution, they often take advantage of free trials. In this limited period of time, users can check out how your products work, and see if using them will bring their business value.
Whenever a prospective customer signs up for a free trial, they provide you with relevant information such as their contact information, company name, and size. This information can be used later on to upsell your product once the potential client’s free trial is close to expiry.
4. Run a Giveaway to Generate Leads and Drive Social Actions
Giveaways and contests are one of the most successful forms of lead generation. Even for SaaS and B2B businesses, giveaway campaigns are a great way of engaging with your audience and generating a list of targeted leads.
Make sure that the giveaway prize is specific to your audience versus something everyone might want. You want to generate leads but they should be meaningful ones that have the potential to generate real business for you. It could be a lifetime plan of your product or services related to what you do, grabbing the attention of businesses that fit your desired customer persona.
In a recent campaign we ran here at Woorise we were able to grow our Woorise Community group on Facebook.
The giveaway generated leads via email subscriptions and social media engagement and at the same time we increased engagement and grow our community group on Facebook, it was a win-win for Woorise.
5. Review SEO on Each of Your Landing Pages to Improve Lead Generation
Because most consumers (88%) research products before purchasing them, it’s important to optimize your website so that your product comes up in your prospective customers’ Google searches. To optimize your content it’s important to:
- Use focus keywords
- Use focus keyword synonyms
- Write meta descriptions for each page on your site
- Use appropriate headings for all text
- Use alt image tags on all images that you use
- Use outbound and inbound links
- Make sure each website text contains at least 500 words
Because there are so many things to remember for SEO optimization, it might be helpful to simply use a plugin (such as Yoast SEO if you’re using WordPress) that checks the content of each webpage on your website and alerts you if you forgot to optimize any aspect of it.
A/B test content
Once you’ve optimized your content, it’s also important to test its effectiveness in terms of customer engagement and conversion. Create different versions of your most visited landing pages and run them simultaneously. After a set period of time (at least a month) compare the conversion results to see which page design, text, and CTA works best.
Optimize website speed
A staggering 43% of consumers abandon a desktop site if it loads too slowly, resulting in lost leads and conversions. There’s plenty of tools available with which you can use to test your site’s desktop and mobile loading speeds.
If you find out that your site loads too slowly, you should consider removing hefty images, widgets, plugins, and forms from your site.
According to Statista, mobile accounts for more than half of the worldwide web traffic. This means that your potential customers are probably checking out your site on their mobile phones before they dive deep on desktop. If your website doesn’t load and has a broken layout that makes it hard to read, your customers are likely to bid you adieu.
In 2020 customer expectations are high. If you can’t master something as simple as creating a mobile-friendly website, your customers will assume the quality of your products and services will be subpar.
6. Add Exit Intent Pop-ups or Offer Educational Downloads to Capture More Leads
Exit-intent pop-ups are generally used on e-commerce sites. Before a shopper exits your website, they’re prompted to input their email address for an incentive (usually a discount.) SaaS companies also tend to offer free downloads of premium educational content such as eBooks or eGuides.
This method is equally effective when generating new leads because customers are often simply waiting to be offered ‘something extra’ that’s going to help them make up their mind when it comes to purchasing from you or engaging with your business.
7. Use Website Forms to Collect Visitor Data
Contact forms are a great way to offer support to both existing and prospective customers while nurturing lead generation. Not all customers want to go ‘the extra mile’ to simply ask you a question. Opening up a new tab to email you might be simply too much effort for a certain type of customer, so creating contact forms is ideal.
All that your website visitors have to do is use their browser’s autofill to fill in their contact information, and type out their questions.
8. Use Live Chat to Provide Immediate Support and Generate New Leads at the Same Time
Contact forms are great, but if your customers need immediate answers to their questions, live chat is your best bet. Advanced live chat software allows you to make use of pre-chat forms, which essentially request customers to submit their contact information such as their name and email address before they can send you a message. This strategy ensures that you can generate leads and continue the conversation over email or other communication channels as needed.
9. Be Present on Product Listing/Review Sites to Generate Relevant SaaS Leads
As a part of their product research, potential customers love to check out what others are saying about your products and services. Therefore, it’s important to get your software listed on as many esteemed review sites (G2, Software Advice, Trustpilot, GetApp, Capterra) as possible. The more positive reviews you gather, the more likely your prospective customers are to navigate to your site, try a free trial, or request a demo.
The key to gathering positive reviews is to simply ask your existing customers to post a review. Even though you’d expect your satisfied customers to happily review your products, they can often find it to be too much work. By offering incentives such as credits that can be applied to their next subscription bill, they’ll be more inclined to help you out by posting a review.
10. Use Social Media Marketing Strategies
Utilize Facebook and Linkedin pay-per-click ads for simple yet cost-effective lead generation. Social media PPC ads are most effective when they’re personalized and segmented for a certain buyer persona, and have engaging ad copy and design.
11. Take Advantage of Referral Marketing
Everyone loves discounts, store credit, and gift cards. By offering your existing customers incentives for referring your product to others, you can generate highly-relevant leads.
Your existing customers will be pleased as they’ll feel important, making them more loyal to your brand in the long run. The more positive word of mouth referrals spread, the more valuable they will be to your company in terms of lifetime value.
12. Present Relevant SaaS Case Studies
Potential customers need to see value in your product. If they don’t, they simply won’t purchase it or use it. Creating landing pages with case studies and data that pertains to your business will showcase your product in the best light, and generate new relevant SaaS leads.
Your potential customers need to see how you’ve helped other companies tackle problems with retention, engagement, and customer satisfaction. The more relevant data they see, the more likely they are to request a demo or start a free trial.
13. Add Calls-to-Action (CTA’s) to Your Email Signature
When you think of email lead generation, you’re probably imaging strategically thought out campaigns with interactive and engaging content. Even though these campaigns are highly effective, we tend to forget about a crucial part that can improve reach and lead generation. By including clever calls-to-action in your email signature, you can engage your audience one last time before they close your email and move on to the next one.
Think clever, short, and sweet copy for CTA’s complete with links that direct the reader to your most important landing pages.
14. Use Facebook Groups and LinkedIn Messaging to Gather Leads
LinkedIn is the number one platform for B2B marketers to find and share quality content. Not only is LinkedIn lead generation cheaper than paying for ads, but it’s also more effective in converting leads.
To get started, you’ll need to do some research about your target audience first. A great way to do that is to look for relevant professional Facebook groups. Make note of who’s in the group, look them up on LinkedIn, and connect with them through engaging copy. This can all be done manually, however, if you want to speed up the process and delegate the work to an automation system, consider Expandi.
15. Get Featured on Product Hunt
Product Hunt is a website that lets users discover new products and software. It’s very effective in generating leads and converting them into paying customers. In fact, having your product featured on the home page can generate more than 10,000 leads in one week, and improve conversion by 5-10%.
However, getting your product listed on Product Hunt is no easy feat. You only have one chance to submit your product, and you can only do so if you get an invite to Product Hunt itself. Your best bet to get featured on the platform is to approach someone who is influential in the community and considered an SME (subject matter expert) to list the product on your behalf.
16. Organize Twitter Chats
Hosting Twitter chats is great for generating leads, improving brand awareness, increasing your follower count, and establishing yourself as an expert in your niche.
Thanks to trending hashtag use and influencer engagement, your posts can generate new relevant leads for your business.
To organize a Twitter chat you’ll need to approach SME’s and influencers, book them, and set a date for the chat. Prepare questions in advance or use real-time audience interaction software such as Sli.do to generate questions as the chat progresses.
17. Bundled App Packs
Team up with other SaaS businesses that aren’t your direct competitors. By offering massive discounts on multiple software that go hand in hand, you’re bound to generate targeted traffic to your business.
For example, if your software is a help desk system, it could bundle nicely with customer satisfaction software.
18. Get Listed on AppSumo
AppSumo is an online marketplace for SaaS businesses. AppSumo is unique because it offers new “lifetime” deals for software on the daily. Although this isn’t the best strategy to improve revenue, as you’ll be offering your product for a heavily discounted price, it will definitely help you generate relevant SaaS leads.
Lead generation is essential for all B2B businesses that want to grow. Without attracting quality, relevant leads, you’re likely to spend more ad revenue than necessary and still struggle with low conversion and retention rates. To attract more relevant leads, it’s important to put out personalized, unique, and educational content that is optimized for the web.
Now that you’re familiar with the top lead generation strategies for SaaS businesses, you can start implementing them into your marketing plan to attract relevant leads that have indicated an interest in your company. Try mixing, matching, and testing the above-mentioned strategies to get the best results possible. Good luck!