Marketing comes in many different forms, like inbound marketing, outbound market, content marketing, and SaaS marketing. But what sets SaaS marketing apart from the rest of the pack?
With the advent of digital marketing, a wide range of methods of marketing to consumers has emerged. It can seem like the marketing game is changing at breakneck speed sometimes, and the fact of the matter is that it is. One of these new methods changing the game is SaaS marketing or Software as a Service marketing.
To help you understand the differences between SaaS marketing and other types of marketing, we’ve provided an outline of what SaaS marketing is and how it is changing the marketing field. Please keep reading to find out how SaaS marketing is changing how we market to consumers.
What Is SaaS Marketing?
To begin with, SaaS is the shorthand for Software as a Service. Essentially, SaaS gives users the ability to use cloud-based applications to connect over the internet. In other words, SaaS is just a way for companies to market their products through an online application to its users.
What makes Software as a Service radically different from other marketing techniques is that many companies using SaaS don’t have a physical presence. They don’t sell physical items; they sell digital commodities that aren’t “real.” That doesn’t mean the products have no value, but they don’t have the exact cost and supply-demand as physical goods.
Also, the interaction between potential buyers of the product and their method of buying the product has dramatically altered. Users don’t walk into a store to buy an album anymore—they buy the album online.
How Is SaaS Changing the Way We Market Products?
SaaS is fundamentally changing the way businesses approach their marketing strategies. For companies that only exist online, traditional marketing techniques that have been used for decades no longer apply.
Marketing to Close
Before, marketing departments generally measured their success in terms of the total amount of opportunities generated. This means that the focus on marketing techniques was to generate interest in a product and facilitate a market for that product to sell.
In other words, SaaS marketing doesn’t just want to generate interest in a product. It aims to directly influence the user to buy that product right then and there. The purpose of the marketing is to lead users to believe in a product, not just lead users to want to buy a product.
The Rise of Demos and Free Trials
SaaS marketing has given rise to nearly infinite free trials and demos. Want to try a premium online service but don’t want to commit to buying it just yet? Have a two-week free trial! Want to compare one web optimization company to another? Take the free developer’s demo for a spin!
A good analogy for this is buying a car. When you enter a car dealership, you take a look at their selection of vehicles. You won’t purchase and sign for a new car just after looking at it in most cases. You want to take it for a test drive to see what it’s capable of, and more importantly, if it’s the right fit for you.
This is the same concept that SaaS puts forward. Before users want to commit to buying a software product, they want to take it for a test run. Demos and free trials are often the best way to let users do that.
Giving users complete access to a premium product or service would seem counterintuitive to traditional marketing techniques. For SaaS, however, it’s not only a good idea, it’s entirely necessary. To close deals, you need to give users a taste of what they’re paying for.
How Is SaaS Changing How Marketers Do Their Job?
Software as a Service hasn’t just altered the methods marketers use to close deals, but it’s affected how they physically do their job. There are now things that marketers have to do before the process of marketing their product even begins.
Web scraping, another name for data scraping, web data extraction, or web harvesting, is examining the underlying data that informs a website to display information. It is rapidly becoming the go-to tool for marketers who want to learn more about an individual market or market trends.
An excellent example of how this tool is helpful is how it aids the real estate industry. Now, using web scraping, realtors and real estate marketers can examine trends in search queries, migration, price changes, and buy/sell rates.
This type of information has become invaluable for SaaS marketing. For example, software companies can market their services to real estate investors using their data during their web scraping.
That said, web scraping is not the easiest thing to pull off. You need knowledge of specific coding languages even to begin the process. However, there are services like Zenscrape available that can help you get started learning how to do it or even perform web scraping on your behalf.
Pitching to Win
Another thing that SaaS has changed about the marketing game is the art of the pitch. A pitch is what you present to potential clients or buyers to convince them to enlist your services or start a project. The pitch has often been the essential thing marketers think about aside from overall strategy.
But how do you pitch a product that doesn’t exist yet? Furthermore, how do you pitch a product that won’t physically exist and for which you cannot present a prototype? The answer will depend on what sort of marketing project you’re engaged in. However, services like Launch Module help tech start-ups pitch their ideas to big companies and investors.
SaaS has changed the marketing landscape for good. Since so many products available online aren’t physical items, SaaS marketing strategies are not only forward-thinking but necessary to stay relevant in an ever-changing world. If you’re marketing an online product, check out the above mentioned resources to gain an edge over the competition.