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SaaS Marketing Strategies

It’s insane an interactive demo can increase free trial sign-ups by 430%.

And yet, that’s exactly what happened to an employee onboarding software company after implementing this strategy.

Jonathan Ronzio sharing, they have added interactive product demo to
Source: Jonathan Ronzio

With tens of SaaS companies receiving millions for funding every day, how do you stand out, let alone outperform on a modest marketing budget in this competitive space?

This guide walks you through five foolproof SaaS marketing strategies that drive results today. 

1. Build an ICP for every vertical

Your ideal customer profile (ICP) will fail if you combine data from different segments into one.

When marketers do this, according to Vladimir Blagojević, co-founder of, it leads to problems like an over-broad ICP, “spray and pray” targeting, and a one-size-fits-all positioning with no differentiation from competitors.  

Let’s illustrate this with an example.

Suppose you’re an academic event organizer who comes across two event management systems. Which one will you choose?

#1: Event management software that handles ticketing, registrations, and networking.

#2: Academic conference system that manages ticketing and registrations, runs virtual poster sessions, receives abstracts, and assigns peer reviews in one place. 

Odds are, you’ll pick #2 in a heartbeat.

Unlike #2, which makes you feel it’s created specifically for you, #1 sounds… unremarkable. It doesn’t resonate with your needs as an academic event planner and sounds exactly the same as the 200+ platforms listed on G2. 

The natural solution is to build an ICP for every segment or vertical. 

Tips to make this strategy work:

Analyze, build, and enrich

Successful ICPs include five pillars: 

  • Firmographics
  • Buying committee
  • Account qualification
  • Account segmentation
  • Account enrichment

Andrei Zinkevich, co-founder of, breaks it down for us.

Start by identifying your top 10 accounts (by revenue) from a specific segment. 

Use a tool like Breadcrumbs Reveal to analyze your marketing, sales, and product data to surface the attributes and actions of your most profitable customers today.

As you analyze your customer data, define the firmographic criteria most important to you (e.g., MRR, location, company size) and include them in each of the 10 accounts.

5 ICP Pillars by Andrei Zinkevich
Source: Andrei Zinkevich

Next, identify who’s involved in the buying decision. 

A typical buying committee, in Zinkevich’s experience, includes:

  • Champions who handle the initial product or vendor research. They attend discovery calls, prepare comparison reports, and provide the call’s most important points to decision-makers.
  • Decision-makers who are responsible for software purchases. With this group, you need to focus on the economic case and position your solution as business-critical.
  • Influencers who are not involved in research or negotiation, but “participate in vendor evaluation and provide feedback on your offering.”
  • Blockers who are not interested in your solution or view your product as a threat.
  • Insiders who don’t belong to any other buying committee role but support you with insider information about key initiatives. These are the most overlooked people who “explain the purchasing process, share who the decision-makers and influencers are, and how to approach them.”

Likewise, enrich this buying committee in your top accounts.

The next stage involves talking to the SDRs. As you review the customer data, collaborate with the sales team to define the tangible criteria to qualify your accounts. 

Questions like “What makes an account a good fit?” and “What makes an account a poor fit even if it fits our firmographics?” will narrow down the list further.

Then, segment your accounts into different tiers:

  • Tier #1 (top 10%)
  • Tier #2 (next 10%)
  • Tier #3 (remaining 80%)

And finally, says Zinkevich, enrich your account further with four types of questions:

  • Buying triggers: What was going on in customers’ lives that made them look for your solution?
  • Research and decision-making process: Where and how do they search? What information are they looking for? What influences their decision? Who is involved in the product approval process?
  • Jobs to be done (JTBD): What are their goals, needs, KPIs and metrics, and challenges? What value does your product bring?
  • Channel presence: Where do customers get industry information? Who are they following?

Include these insights in your different ICPs, and hand them over to all customer-facing teams.

2. Let your employees do the talking

After only two months of posting on LinkedIn, the ActiveCampaign team collectively lifted their weekly impressions by 400%.

And on top of that, inbound partnerships, speaking, and podcast guesting invitations, and attributed trials and sales from LinkedIn have increased.

Xiaofei Zhang LinkedIn Post on Parternships
Source: Xiaofei Zhang
Zhang, who leads strategic partnerships at ActiveCampaign, often posts about partnerships, team building, and growth on LinkedIn

That’s the impact of getting employees to grow their personal brand.

They gain visibility, position themselves as rising thought leaders, and drive more business opportunities.

Getting your team to post on social media creates a “halo effect” on your target audience, says Ashley Lewin, senior director of demand generation at Refine Labs, even if they’re not the company’s ideal customer personas or subject matter experts.

“While you may not speak directly to your company’s audience,” writes Lewin, “They typically have others outside the buying committee in your role.”

These folks will mention and even advocate your brand when it’s the right time (note: this goes back to our point about influencers in strategy #1). 

Engagement skyrockets even if your posts are unrelated to the product you’re selling.

When Casey Hill, a senior growth manager at ActiveCampaign, posted a carousel about his experience navigating LinkedIn’s latest algorithm changes, he received three demo requests despite not once talking about his company’s product.  

Was it because the last slide plugged ActiveCampaign’s latest offering?


But we bet it’s another reason:  

People do business with people they know, like, and trust. Hill’s insightful posts, which likely pop up in people’s feeds many times, instilled goodwill and inspired them to reach out.

Tips to make this strategy work:

Set up an employee-generated content program

To get buy-in, appeal to your team’s self-interest and offer support.

For instance, opt for tangible rewards if you want the engineering team to post more often on social media.

“Cash is a possibility,” advises Hill. “But to be honest, I find gifting experiences can be a better bang for your buck. Sending someone to a $1K Airbnb in some epic spot is something a person would normally never spend on but will always remember fondly.”

The bottom line, get to know your employees and figure out what makes them tick.

3. Approach your content strategy with a sales lens

High-traffic content is meaningless if it doesn’t translate to revenue in the long run. 

If your blog posts aren’t acquiring leads and sales even when generating tons of traffic, odds are you’re focusing too much on low-intent keywords in your SEO strategy.

Go after higher-intent keywords to increase conversions.

These keywords center around pain points and are usually searched by prospective buyers further in the sales funnel:

  • Category keywords (e.g., Virtual conference tools)
  • JTBD keywords (e.g., How to engage with audience during a presentation?)*
  • Comparison and alternatives keywords (e.g., Zoom vs Google Meet, Zoom alternatives)

Out of these higher-intent keywords, comparison and alternatives drive the highest average conversion rate (8.43%).

Conversion Rates by Category in 2023
Source: Grow and Convert
Comparison and alternative posts take the top spot at 8.43%. With these queries, searchers are actively comparing alternative tools and closer to making a decision.

*Note: JTBD keywords have one of the lowest conversion rates (2.44%) because they’re “up in the funnel.” It’s still worth targeting them as it lets you organically position your product as the natural solution for the problems buyers are urgently solving.

Tips to make this strategy work:

Interview folks who walk the talk 

The biggest key to nailing a sales-led content strategy is demonstrating subject matter expertise.

The problem?

Your internal experts don’t have the time or skills to write; and your writers don’t have the first-hand experience of the topic they’re writing about.

One quick way of solving this is having your writers interview experts, whether by sourcing quotes on HARO, tapping into their network, or in LaunchNotes’ case, grabbing unique insights from its own podcast.   

The B2B SaaS company has interviewed dozens of product leaders and stored their conversations in a database

Whenever writers are working on a new article, they can directly pull out quotes from it rather than combing through Google and regurgitating the same points over and over again, like every other writer on the planet.

4. Let your product take the wheel

When Trainual changed its product tour video to an interactive demo on its homepage, it saw a 430% lift in free trial sign-ups in just a week. 

Why did it work so well?

Because the employee onboarding software company lets potential customers visualize what it’s like to use the product right away (note: this is product-led growth in action—a go-to-market strategy where the product drives acquisition, activation, retention, and expansion).

Trainual Interactive Demo
Source: Trainual
Trainual directs users to its product immediately on a click of the button. Users can freely navigate around without signing up for an account or completing a lengthy form.

Unlike interactive demos where users explore the product at their own pace, product videos are often limited—for starters, you can’t know for sure customers will use your product the way you intended. 

“Very few times will someone use the product for a use case exactly as the product demo has been recorded,” echoes Ashley Lewin, senior director of demand generation at Refine Labs.

This risks your target customers feeling disconnected from the experience. 

“Let people choose their own adventure,” advises Andrew Capland, founder of Delivering Value. “Don’t force them down a one-size-fits-all customer experience.”

The results speak for themselves.

Besides improving the traffic to trial rate, Trainual also saw a 100% lift in users reaching activated trial status and a 175% lift in users converting to paid customers.

Consider using a tool like Navattic to create your interactive product demos. This kickstarts the onboarding process right away.

Tips to make this strategy work:

(i) Organize onboarding with a task checklist if it takes over 20 steps to reach the “aha!” moment

Demos with a checklist generate on average a 17% higher completion rate. 

When users can choose specific tools of the product they’re most interested in, activation increases. 

Note the most common drop-off points while you’re at it, as it signal unclear instructions or confusing user experience.

(ii) Gather qualitative data to improve the experience

Use an in-app NPS survey to collect user feedback. 

Admittedly, the response rate won’t be as high, but the feedback comes in handy. 

“We used an in-app NPS and open text field for comments,” reveals Steven MacDonald, the head of content at INEVO AS, when he worked with a client in the SaaS industry.

“The few neutral and negative responses helped us further optimize the user journey.”

5. Retarget free users to reach activation

After Custify implemented product-led retargeting in its paid ads strategy, trial to paid conversion rates rose by 59%.

Unlike most companies that run ads to promote the product’s value proposition or USP, the customer success software company uses them to guide trial users through each lifecycle step.

For example, for users who have signed up but not added clients or made a test quote, Custify would retarget them with product screenshots of how to do this. Similarly, users who haven’t filed their tax would see ads with specific instructions for chartered accountants.

Retargeted customers are three times more likely to click on your ad than people who haven’t interacted with your business before. In Custify’s case, not only did the retargeted ads generate clicks, but they also converted trial users to paid customers.

Tips to make this strategy work:

Get clued into how customers progress through  

You need to track and understand your prospective customer’s needs throughout the customer journey for this strategy to work.

Start by mapping the customer lifecycle journey. Then drop multiple events to your tracking pixels to enable targeted ads through each step.

Retarget your highest-intent users with new CTAs, offers, and social proof. Tools like Mutiny can help personalize these marketing messages for every user.

Final Thoughts

These SaaS startups show you it’s possible to outperform in a competitive space.

From employee-generated content to remarketing with a product lens, there’s no shortage of strategies to drive results with a modest budget. 

Give it a try and let us know how it goes!

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