Mastering SaaS Marketing: Understanding, Implementing Strategies, and Measuring Success Against Digital Marketing

SaaS marketing is a type of marketing that helps build awareness and promote software as a service products.

Updated: February 12, 2024

SaaS marketing, or Software as a Service marketing, is a marketing approach designed to build awareness and promote software as a service products. It involves strategies to introduce a product to the market, position it effectively, and enhance the visibility of a SaaS organization. Through SaaS marketing, software-as-a-service products are advertised, and leads are generated. This type of marketing is beneficial for various SaaS businesses, including web-based software, subscription-based services, and hosted software applications.

Clients of SaaS companies have the opportunity to test the product before making a purchase, thanks to SaaS marketing strategies like free trials and product demos. This is particularly advantageous as these companies offer intangible products.

Difference between SaaS Marketing and Digital Marketing:

  • SaaS marketing focuses on building strong customer relationships by selling the same service monthly, unlike digital marketing, which uses online channels to sell a product repeatedly to attract new clients.
  • SaaS marketing aims to generate recurring revenue.
  • Specific marketing skills are needed in SaaS marketing to create lifetime value for customers. For instance, marketers must demonstrate the ongoing value of the SaaS product to justify its monthly subscription cost.
  • Keeping the product up to date and offering regular incentives are essential strategies to attract, sell to, and retain customers while staying ahead of the competition.
  • SaaS products are typically cloud-based applications that customers can access on demand.
  • Customizable products can be developed and upgraded to meet the specific needs of client organizations.
  • The primary goal of SaaS marketing is to attract new customers by ensuring market visibility and raising awareness of new offerings among existing customers.
  • SaaS marketers must consider specific factors, such as target audience, longer customer journeys, and tiered pricing, when developing their marketing strategies.

Channels for SaaS marketing:

Your SaaS marketing strategy can be supported by implementing any or all of these techniques:

  • Content marketing: The usefulness of your product can be illustrated and more traffic can be drive to your site by creating content that is relevant to your target audience.
  • Search engine optimization (SEO): Organic discovery can be facilitated by optimizing the content on your site for search engines.
  • Paid search: Compounding your SEO efforts with paid search advertising may be considered, making your site and product more visible to a larger audience.
  • Referral marketing: Your current customer base can be taken in to account to expand your brand reach through recommendations.
  • Review promotion: Your reach can be expanded while a positive reputation can be build by getting your product reviewed by trusted sources.
  • Choice limitation: The tiers offered by you to consumers should be considered as offering too many options can confuse them about the distinguishing qualities of each tier.
  • Price transparency: Consumers can make an informed choice by knowing the price of a product beforehand. You should facilitate their journey by being transparent about your prices.
  • Trials and demos: Consumers should be allowed to use your product cost-free for a specified period to resolve confusion or indecision about the product. Conversion can be encouraged as using a product can foster an affinity for it.
  • Simplified processes: The experience of consumers should be made as easy as possible by simplifying all the processes of buying as they sometimes decide to buy a product but stop short because of a confusing sign-up or finalization process.
  • Promotions: Promotions can be used strategically to persuade leads and direct conversions to other products that might interest them.

Implementing SaaS Marketing Strategies

SaaS marketing strategies involve three main steps to sell your service, with each step requiring a unique approach.

Find Paying Customers: The first step is to find customers who are willing to pay a monthly fee for your service. You can use a mix of marketing and sales strategies to attract these leads.

Market Your Product: Once you've identified potential customers, the next step is to provide them with enough information to make a purchase decision. Marketing can be done both off-site and on-site. Off-site marketing draws potential clients to your website, while on-site marketing aims to finalize the deal as they explore your product online.

Retain Existing Customers: The final step involves keeping your current customers engaged. Offering specific discounts for upgrades can encourage them to stick around and enhance their accounts.

Successful SaaS providers employ diverse marketing strategies at each stage of the sales funnel. Before launching your marketing efforts, two things should be confirmed:

Clear and Informative Platform: Ensure your platform clearly communicates what makes your product unique. Since most SaaS customers compare multiple options, having a website that highlights your unique selling proposition (USP) is crucial for closing deals quickly.

Optimized Website for Conversions: Your website should be user-friendly and optimized to convert visitors into customers. Utilize various calls to action (CTAs) to engage visitors no matter where they are on your site. Options like free trials, newsletter subscriptions, or invites to follow your service on social media can help you reconnect with potential customers who haven't yet subscribed to your service.

Steps for Implementing a SaaS Marketing Strategy:

Identify your target audience:

Determining who your ideal customers are is the first element of any successful marketing strategy. Ask yourself what sorts of people or businesses benefit from using your software to identify your target audience. Then their pain points and preferences can be specified by developing customer personas which represent key traits based on research, observations and analytics. Demographics, Business background, Values and goals, Influences and sources, Motivations and challenges are often included customer personas.

Choose your marketing channels:

Select which marketing channels are the most appropriate for your software once you have identified your target audience. Radio, Television, Social media, Email, Podcasts, Blogs, Billboards and external signage, and Print are some of the channels you might consider. You can refer to your customer personas to identify channels they had use to ensure campaign visibility. You need to push your campaign on social media rather than through print media if your customers spend most of their time online.

Develop your content:

Determine the marketing content you plan to create for your software is the next step. Your content should vary because different types of content appeal to different consumers at different stages of the sales funnel. White papers, Case studies, Testimonials, E-books, Infographics, Blog posts, Social media posts, Emails, Webinars, and Videos are some examples of content you could use in your campaigns.

Determine your metrics:

You need to consider what metrics you can use to measure your degree of success before you launch your first SaaS marketing campaign. You can more easily identify areas for improvement and continue to optimize your campaigns and calculate the return on investment for each campaign to produce better results over time by implementing these metrics. Your metrics may vary based on what your objectives are and which marketing channels you choose. Number of people reached or cost per person reached, Number of engagements or cost per engagement, Number of views or cost per view, Number of clicks or cost per click, Number of landing page views or cost per landing page view, Number of conversions or cost per conversion, Churn rate, Conversion rate, Click-through rate, Customer retention rate, Number of active trials, Number of followers gained on social media, Sign-up-to-paid conversion, and Customer acquisition cost are some common metrics to consider. 

Generate brand awareness:

Typically, new SaaS marketing campaigns run brand-awareness ads to introduce the software to potential customers at the top of the sales funnel. These potential customers generally fit the customer persona of SaaS company but may be unfamiliar with the specific brand, software or services. Solving customer pain points, establishing a social media presence and developing a good SEO content strategy are some of the keys to reach these customers. 

Provide value:

You need to focus on providing value to your customers in the next phase of your SaaS marketing campaign. Your customers are likely in the middle of the sales funnel at this point, which means they are aware of your product but remain unconvinced about purchasing it. Longer educational videos, E-books, Downloadable guides or worksheets, and Webinars are some of the content that can be used by you  to provide value and generate interest in your software. You also need to focus on metrics such as the number of engagements on a social media advertisement, the number of clicks back to your website and the number of landing page views at this point.

Capture leads:

Convincing potential customers to purchase your software is capturing leads. Your potential customers have likely engaged with the content you have created by this point in your SaaS marketing campaign. You not only need to create advertisements that provide high value to your leads but also require a commitment from them to motivate their choice. A free trial or demo version of your software, A free subscription to a weekly digital newsletter, A membership to an online message board or community, A series of webinars or online courses are some of the examples of content you might use for these advertisements.

Your leads are required to share their contact information to allow access to such premium content. It shows they are interested in your software if they sign up, which allows you to send them other marketing materials that can convince them to purchase your product.

Build customer relationships:

SaaS marketing continues even after acquiring a new customer, as SaaS companies depends on subscriptions and upgrades to increase their revenue. You should continue providing value to your customers by offering additional premium content, and providing high-quality service by listening to their feedback, responding quickly to their questions and helping them troubleshoot issues. You will be able to build stronger relationships with your customers, improve the quality of your software, increase product referrals and retain your current customer base with the help of such measures.

Measuring SaaS Marketing:

You can know how successful you are in acquiring customers and retaining existing clients with the help of SaaS performance metrics. A a lot of different key performance indicators are there to measure SaaS Marketing. The top five indicators that help establish the success or failure of SaaS marketing campaigns are:


The number of customers who cancel your subscription in a given period is indicated by Churn. Usually, it is calculated every month. You should keep your churn rate less than 5%.

Churn rate is the total number of customers who have canceled this month divided by total subscribers at the beginning of the month, multiplied by 100

Monthly Recurring Revenue:

The revenue generated by the SaaS company in a given period is known as MRR.

MRR is total number of accounts for the month multiplied by rate in dollars per account.

Customer Lifetime Value:

The total amount of money that is expected to receive by your SaaS business during the lifetime of a customer is determined by CLV. The average revenue is multiplied by the length of the contract, ARPA to calculate CLV.

1 divided by churn rate and multiplied by ARPA is another formula to generate CLV

Customer Retention:

Also known as net revenue retention, or NRR, it looks at the revenue streams from the existing customer base. You also require stats on MRR and churn to calculate NRR.

NRR is calculated by first adding MRR and expansion revenue, and then subtracting it from revenue lost from downgrades and churn. The total is divided by MRR and then multiplied by 100.

The expansion revenue is the revenue from cross-sell and upgrades in this equation. A positive NRR is always greater than 100% and you have lost revenue from current customers for that particular month if anything less than 100%.

Customer Acquisition Cost:

The total marketing and sales cost required to acquire the customer is known as CAC.

CAC is calculated by dividing total cost of sales and marketing by total number of new customers.