SaaS What is it?
Software as a Service is a cloud-embedded application resource, made available by a cloud provider through the internet. The licensee (Individual/Business) subscribes to SaaS, provided by the licensor (cloud provider). The applications are administered through cloud servers which can be remote.
The difference between installing standalone software on an individual computer and using SAAS is that storage and maintenance responsibility is with the cloud provider in the latter’s case.
What does Cloud Service comprise?
There are 3 main services on cloud:
- IAAS (Infrastructure as a Service): Includes Servers and Storage platforms for companies to store and maintain their own applications.
- PAAS (Platform as a Service): Development and support tools are provided for building applications
- SAAS (Software as a Service): Comes with pre-incorporated applications
What B2B SaaS Marketing entails today
Software as a Service has the lion’s share of the Cloud Computing Service market, and 50% of the overall Software market, says Gartner.
Many SaaS companies are creating futuristic enterprise resource management platforms with a process convenience approach. But that should not be the only extent of it. Company and Department Heads want to know what tangible and intangible returns they can reap from your SaaS.
How do you create an archetypal Saas Management Software which deciphers every problem area and maximizes productivity?
The analogy of Blue Ocean Theory is the best fit to explain why you should create and target a different niche for your software. Pioneer in something which the big sharks of the market have not conceptualized yet.
Game Plan for SaaS Marketing Challenges
- Have a Keen Eye on your Industry:
Quoting Gartner yet again, there will be a remarkable surge in end-user-spending on public cloud services. The indications are that there will be a substantial growth of 20.4% with 678.8 billion, as compared to 563.6 billion in 2023.
It is hard to process this rapid growth, therefore it’s more crucial to be well-informed of the market trends. Such as, the noticeable developments in AI-enabled tools and AI-equipped machine learning for accurate insights for critical strategic decisions. SaaS is also making a mark on the blockchain technology which safeguards public networks from any malicious threat.
Moreover, you need to get regular feedback from your current clients from various industry verticals. Read relevant industry blogs and keep abreast of changing industrial trends. Construct a proper review page for your software to study the pitfalls. Watch the competition closely.
- Be Distinct and then Reach Out:
You need to know what the purpose is of your SaaS offering? Which enterprise resource does it cater to? Is it reducing process cycle times or enhancing data dashboards for effective decision-making? There can be several cycle times where proper time management is vital. For instance, raw material to finished goods cycle-time, sales cycle-time, inventory to dispatch cycle-time, invoicing to billing cycle-times etc. You need to find the problem statement you are solving.
As spectacular as your software is, it is still intangible. Unlike a palpable offering which can be bubble-wrapped and given to a buyer, your software can only be experienced.
If you are in an introductory phase, you need a robust cold-outreach plan and mega-scale webinars are recommended to reach your core audience. Webinars and Business Meets are tested ways to attract valid interest. It should be done with a proper tracking and review mechanism with the participants.
Introduce some exciting offers for first-time subscribers. Freemium plans are the most common customer magnet, but it also has the challenge of upgrading subscribers to paid packages. In the sustenance phase, you can encourage your current clients to bring in referral clients.
- Low-cost vs Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) :
There are several types of SaaS like ERP SaaS, CRM SaaS, CMS (Content Management Systems) SaaS, Project Management SaaS, etc.
Is your objective to create a low-cost solution to cater to the routine processes of the company, or will it be streamlining processes?
Some more FAQs often asked are:
- What will the installation cost?
- What will be the cost of training?
- Does the installation cost include initial training?
- What are the annual maintenance plans?
- What is the provision for reports and analytics?
- Can your SaaS be accessed remotely?
- Does it have a mobile application?
- What process does it simplify or shorten?
- How will increase the overall productivity?
More often, these are the questions asked by functional or technical heads who evaluate the overall feasibility of SaaS incorporation, as they will be answerable to their seniors. These questions entail aspects of Total Cost of Ownership.Having a cost-efficient SaaS is good, but how is it in terms of analytics, real-time reports, security, deduping of data etc.? All of this determines the long-term sustenance and benefits. If it enhances productivity with a one-time sizeable installation and training cost, that is its USP.
- Identify your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) :
According to your application, you need clear-cut technographic and firmographic segmentations and decide the organizational cadre for first impact. Most importantly, you must know the sectors you need to target. For instance, if you are offering Accounting/Bookkeeping/ Invoicing SaaS, your prime targets might be Banking firms, Financial Institutions and CA firms etc. There are broadly three categories of buyers which you need to identify:
1. Economic Buyer: In certain scenarios, you might want to approach the top-notch, C-Suite or founder level people of a company. This can be the case if you are offering a niche product. They will be able to envision the long-term benefits or the direct cost efficiencies in the long run.
2. Technical Buyer: This is the person who might go unnoticed but can become the biggest standard-bearer of your brand. The IT/ITS managers and Technical Departmental Heads are the kind of people you would want to pinpoint. Typically, this happens if your SaaS solution is technically intricate. If he feels that your product can bring operational convenience and productivity, he will have enough impetus to buy from you. His professional win would be recognition from the top management, in his organization.
3. User Buyer: Enterprise Resource Planning SaaS is designed for different functional areas and processes with a streamlining objective. For example, Purchase, Billing, HR, Inventory Managment etc. Functional heads of the respective departments become your key people who will lend a year if they think that your software service has function-specific benefits.
- Plan your Team before Planning the Funnel :
This is a more advanced stage of SaaS Marketing where you drive sales. The Sales Funnel setting starts with setting up a core sales team. Make sure each team member understands the dynamics of your SaaS in detail. After profound training you should pass on the leads you have churned from BTL (Below the line) and ATL (Above the line) strategies. Make sure they know what gaps the software is filling. They should be able to give elaborate demos and counter all possible questions from prospects. Maximum appointment setting and regular follow-up is a must.
What should a good SaaS have?
A few must-have features in SaaS are:
- Scalability: It should be designed for voluminous growth with wide coverage.
- Simple Installation: The onboarding should be seamless and initial training should come in the initial installation charges.
- Mobility: The software should have remote access provisions. In Sales, it becomes important for the field staff to have access through an app.
- Easy Maintenance: Some downtimes and interruptions are inevitable, but it should have automatic periodic updating.
Don’t Sell Alone! Get a Hired Hand
The biggest challenge for any service provider is to build a sales funnel. It’s difficult to establish an in-house demand generation team which will pipeline prospects efficiently. If you collaborate with a good marketing partner who has expertise in IT Tech-Sales, you are bound to have better pipelines and hence conversions.
TSL Consulting has the expertise of profiling, identifying and nurturing leads for B2B SaaS Market verticals. We come with over two decades of rich experience in planning, structuring and executing SaaS Marketing plans to reach the right target audience and extracting high potential MQLs. Apart from having a robust outreach plan, we also conduct webinars to start knocking on the right doors.
Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our SaaS Marketing Expert +91 9529286060.