Marketing Automation in SaaS

Like search engine marketing, marketing automation is a huge subject and something that other texts can educate you more thoroughly on. This book aims to give you the basics, some tips and tricks, and get you started rather than fully deliver every aspect of this industry.

Because of the scalability of SaaS businesses, if you don’t have a way to automatically to the following things regularly, it won't get done.

  • Reach

  • Engage

  • Educate

  • Converse

This means you will lose out to other businesses who can and do.

Marketing automation is absolutely necessary for almost all SaaS businesses, and the more your business can utilize marketing automation, the more you can grow. At first, it may seem like a simple set of tasks to create a few messages that go out to your people somewhat regularly, but when you start exploring the depths of what can and should be done, you realize the rabbit holes goes deep and may not have an end.

The effects of marketing automation in SaaS

Where you start:

When you’re just getting going, you basically know who your users are and what they want. So you send them a set of welcome emails and then follow up with them every other week to tell them about how the product is progressing and what new tools have been added.

Initial conversion rate: 3% - 5%

Where you can go:

  1. A new user sees a blog article or post on social media that they think they randomly stumbled upon (they didn’t).

  2. The messaging happens to meet their needs perfectly and the system features are exactly what they are looking for (because it was tailored specifically to their demographic).

  3. They click on the link and on the home page see someone exactly in their role accomplishing the goal they want to accomplish (because each user type has a different view that they now see).

  4. The messaging on the page is exactly what they need to hear to get a trial started (because you formed it specifically for them), so they sign up.

  5. The onboarding process hits their specific needs and focuses on their issues and the parts of the system they need (because you knew who they were and what issues they would have before they ever started).

  6. After they sign up, the user receives a set of onboarding emails that match their role and and needs and explains how to integrate the system into their business (because you know exactly what this process is and how it works).

  7. After getting into the system, a customer representative calls them to check in and seems to completely understand their business needs with a set of questions and answers that they clearly know fits the user.

  8. Your potential customer decides that this company clearly understands their needs and solves their problems, so they are going to pay for the system.

  9. After they start paying, they get ongoing educational information about their role and their industry with graphics that match exactly who they are (crazy huh?).

  10. All of this is just the beginning.

Want to guess on the conversion rates on this kind of user specified setup?

New conversion rate: Would you believe 23%?!

This is a REAL CASE STUDY. It actually happened. This business went from 3% - 5% up to an incredible 23% conversion rate.

That’s a pretty solid increase. But there have been companies that brought their conversion rates as high as 50%. Now that is crazy. If you’re still wondering about the power of marketing automation, knowing your customers, connecting with them in ways they respond to, and solving their problems how they need them solved, now you know.

What is and is not marketing automation in SaaS?

Now that I’ve sold you on needing marketing automation, let’s talk about what exactly it is and is not.

  1. Most people, when they first hear about it, think it is email marketing or a fancy way to spam people. It’s not.

  2. People also think that it’s a ‘set it and forget it’ system. It’s not that either.

  3. Finally, some people, once seeing what this kind of platform can do sometimes think of it as a magic bullet. It’s definitely not that.

Marketing automation includes the following features or areas:

  • Campaign Management

  • Email Marketing

  • Landing Pages

  • Lead Scoring

  • Lead Management

  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems Integration

  • Social Media Marketing

  • Analytics

Just like everything else we’ve discussed in this book, marketing automation for SaaS systems is iterative. You have to constantly hypothesize, test, and retest to get to maximum efficiency, and no system is going to do that for you. Until the computers take over, it’s people that have to do this, and it is time consuming!

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