Kennected

What Is SaaS Lead Generation?

Table of Contents

SaaS lead generation strategies are the methods that a marketing company employs to gather the attention of customers and (hopefully) close deals with them to gain company revenue. SaaS stands for Software as a Service. Kennected’s Cloud Kennect is a SaaS product.

If you work for a SaaS company and are looking for the best ways to generate quality leads, cold emails and untailored ads won’t get you very far.

SaaS Solutions Power the Business World.

The emergence of AWS, platform APIs, app marketplaces, and various other emerging trends have made it easier than ever to create SaaS solutions, and virtually every niche and use case is now served.

Since 2010, there has been a steady rise in the average spend on SaaS applications per company year-over-year.

The ability to generate leads is the lifeblood of your SaaS business.

However, with more and more businesses vying for the attention of your target market with increasing sophistication, B2B SaaS marketers need to pay more attention to lead generation.

Compared to five years ago, when SaaS startups faced an average of 2.6 competitors, as of 2020, founders face upwards of 9.7 competitors.

Successful pipeline marketing strategies will vary across industries, product types, and annual contract values (among other factors).

Luckily, when it comes to lead generation for software companies, there are plenty of lead generation strategies in digital marketing that you may be able to put to work for you.

This blog will explore the timeless SaaS lead generation strategies that today’s intelligent SaaS companies use to generate leads.

Where Do Leads Come From?

There can be different channels that can generate leads for your SaaS company.

There are several channels, including but not limited to,

  1. paid ads

  2. your company website

  3. blogs

  4. PRs

  5. case studies

  6. videos

  7. webinars

  8. referrals

  9. networking groups

  10. social media

  11. your mom telling all her friends about how great your company is

There is a lot to be aware of here if you wonder how to market successfully in B2B SaaS spaces.

If you run a SaaS company and are trying to gain more SaaS leads, then it might be helpful to generate more SaaS demand. In other words, people should want to buy your offerings.

However, this is the simple version, and there is a lot more that goes into a B2B SaaS marketing plan.

Is Lead Generation Important?

The short answer is yes; the longer answer is that you will get more value from some lead generation services, mainly depending on your industry.

There are plenty of B2B lead generation companies out there. So, if you start by looking at a SaaS agency, you might be looking for more affordable lead generation services.

On the one hand, a traditional SaaS lead generation company and its services can be quite expensive.

Still, on the other, you also want to make sure that you generate plenty of high-quality leads, which you might not always be able to accomplish on your own.

Start filling your sales pipeline today

What Is A Buyer Persona?

A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer, based on market research and what you know about your existing customers.

As a B2B SaaS marketer, everything you do as part of your marketing should be focused on these targets, without exception.

What Is Lead Nurturing?

Sales qualified leads are the leads we all want, but the cold hard truth is you generally have to start with IQLs, nurturing the leads through to a point where they are a SQL or “hot lead.”

Lead nurturing is the process where you start building relationships with customers in every stage of both the buyer’s journey and sales funnel by constantly communicating using the relevant content.

This is a compelling lead generation strategy because it lets you build trust and credibility with them by showing that you’re an expert in your niche by constantly communicating with them.

Marketing qualified leads are in the consideration stage of the customer journey, and may be referred to as “warm leads.”

New Lead Acquisition

If you know how many new leads your company gets each month and the percentage of those leads you can expect to become paying customers, you can predict your revenue.

If you can improve and increase your lead generation, you’ll inevitably grow your revenue.

Unfortunately, lead generation can be one of the biggest SaaS marketing challenges.

Describe Outcomes

To successfully pitch your product or service, you must focus on their expected outcomes.

  • How should they expect to benefit from this purchase?

  • What problems and pain points are you solving?

 

Show them the measurable, realistic outcomes, and solve their pain. The more specific they are, the easier it becomes to close.

Segmentation

As segmenting your audience is the foundation of your marketing strategy, you need to be specific and on target. To filter your audience accurately, you need to have reliable data.

Ideally, you’ll have your audience segmented into the different markets you serve and mapped along their buyer’s journey (or your marketing funnel ).

You should know the pain points at the top of the funnel:

  • What pieces of information are customers looking for when they first start the “problem discovery” phase of their journey?

  • What information are they looking for when they’re demoing products?

You should be there every step of the way.

Only six out of 10 (62%) of surveyed SaaS companies expressed confidence in their ability to create a list for a campaign that accurately reflects their target audience.

Display Ads

Display ads are what most users see when they’re scrolling through Facebook or LinkedIn. Most SaaS companies use them as native advertising based on their customer personas.

This tactic pushes ads out to users who match your criteria, such as interests, occupation, and location.

Social Ads

Social ads work by identifying where your buyer personas are likely to spend their time, and you will be able to select the most appropriate social media platform.

For B2B lead generation LinkedIn will often be your best bet. It can be quite expensive compared to Facebook, but the job/industry-based targeting is much stronger.

Start filling your sales pipeline today

Lead Magnets For Inbound Marketing

This is where your persona work from earlier comes in. The best lead magnets address their core challenges, regularly affecting their biggest problems.

Once you’ve identified those pain points, you can work out what they need to overcome them.

Maybe it’s an e-book going into detail around a particular subject your persona wants to understand, a working document they can use to solve a problem, or an asset they can white-label and use within their own business.

Lead Scoring

The lead score measures the quality of a lead on a predefined scale.

It is a combination of the specific actions a lead has taken (for example, downloading a content offer, or visiting a particular web page) and the characteristics of that lead.

This score is then used to learn the suitability of the lead, and informs whether they are ready to hear from the sales team.

You only want your sales team working on qualified leads. They are closer to the end of the buyer’s journey. 

Ask any salesperson what they would like concerning generating leads, and we guarantee you that they’ll want highly scored leads and more ready to buy.

Webinars

Webinars are an opportunity for direct interaction with potential leads, allowing you to answer leads’ questions in real-time.

This helps you build relationships, show your niche authority, and nurture leads who are already interested in your software.

Webinars are great for lead acquisition and conversion. It’s when non-verbal marketing efforts can work their magic to draw in leads.

One of the biggest benefits of running a webinar is that you can repurpose the recording as part of your content marketing strategy once it’s done and dusted.

Once you’ve decided what the webinar will cover and how it’s going to run, it’s time to get some sign-ups! One of the best ways to do this is to run targeted social media ads.

You should also build a dedicated landing page and add some CTAs to appropriate pages on your website.

You’ll need a platform to host the webinar on and handle attendee sign-ups and email or SMS reminders.

WebinarJam is one of the most widely used hosting platforms for SaaS webinars.

Chatbots

While customer success is vital to a sales team, it can easily take up all your time. More companies are turning to use automated chatbots to answer commonly asked questions.

Chatbots give sales representatives more time for generating leads.

As a busy business leader, you may not have time to think about each step in this process every day.

Since chatbots instantly engage with website visitors and answer their questions, you can quickly capture valuable leads when it counts.

That is another reason why it may be helpful to partner with B2B lead generation professionals who can help you in this area.

It is also important for you to use software programs that can cut down on the manual and clerical labor that could be automated too.

Call To Action

It doesn’t matter how great your website content is; you will find it hard to generate leads without compelling calls-to-action (CTAs).

These CTAs should relate to the web page’s content and offer further value.

Whether it’s a link to a landing page to download a gated content offer, newsletter sign-up, or simply get in touch form, your CTAs should outline the benefit of taking that action.

Inbound Marketing vs. Outbound Marketing

While outbound marketing tactics are often expensive, inbound leads cost 61% less to acquire. It’s not only cost where inbound lead generation strategies trump outbound either.

An outbound marketing strategy only generates new business when you reach people ready to buy.

With inbound, SaaS companies use content marketing to bring people to their website and generate leads and potential customers through information they find valuable.

HubSpot founder Brian Halligan mentioned that marketers today spend 90% of their efforts on outbound marketing and 10% on inbound marketing. But those numbers should be flipped.

Start filling your sales pipeline today

Google Adwords (Display Marketing)

A well-executed Google AdWords campaign targeted to the correct audience with an optimized landing page can be a winning combination to score qualified leads for your SaaS company.

The Google Display Network (GDN) can be used at every stage of the buyer’s journey.

Like with social ads, you target prospects based on interests and specific websites that you know your personas frequent.

Ads And Landing Pages

If you market your software to several businesses, consider creating a landing page for each business type.

Ads and landing pages are an effective combination for lead generation. Google AdWords can get a little costly for SaaS companies, but it depends on your keywords.

To use social media successfully for lead generation, your ad needs to be pushing viewers toward a specific call-to-action.

The best way to do this is to encourage viewers to click through to a specific landing page to convert the prospect into a lead on your website.

It’s generally more cost-effective than form-fill lead capture goals, and you deliver a lot more information on a landing page than you can in an in-stream ad.

A good benchmark for landing pages across all industries is 20%, but this is likely to depend on the nature of the offer and how clear the benefit is.

Always run two versions of your landing pages, sending 50% of traffic to each.

It’s a strategy that’s worth looking into.

Email Marketing

You may have been told email marketing is fading out as social media platforms take over online attention.

This is far from the truth, and you may be surprised to know email marketing is still a lucrative field.

The ROI is insane, and you can get some pretty sweet open rates if your headlines are strong. So how exactly can you get results from email marketing for your SaaS company?

Put a CTA in your email signatures. You’re sending tens if not hundreds of emails a day. Multiply that by the 30 people in your office, and that’s an easy 3000 emails sent every day.

You’re missing out on an opportunity if you don’t have a solid call to action built into your email signatures.

Video Marketing

Creating a video explaining your product allows you to reach these people you won’t be able to reach even with a well-written copy on your website’s landing page.

Videos can also help you start building trust with your potential customers.

When they see and hear someone from your company speaking about your product, they feel more comfortable doing business with you.

Content Marketing For SaaS Companies

Create content for each stage of the buyer’s journey.

They are typically prospects who’ve come across your top of funnel content (blogs, eBooks), and have become a lead by handing over an email address in exchange for more valuable information (such as subscribing to your blog or downloading an e-book).

Content marketing is an effective lead generation strategy for B2B SaaS companies. It helped shape HubSpot into the multi-million dollar brand it is today.

It increased Ridester’s organic traffic by 487%. Content marketing even rescued Groove from the clutches of startup death and guided it into a $5 million company.

You’ve got to make sure your blog aligns with your SaaS marketing goals. You need to be consistent, and you’ve got to do it with purpose. Remember, your goal is to generate leads.

The only way you turn a reader into an opportunity is to provide such incredible value that they are begging for more.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Am I clear on my audience, and is this post aimed squarely at them?

  • Do I have keyword data with enough search volume to justify writing this blog post?

  • Does this article provide clear, actionable insights?

  • Would I be so impressed if I were the reader that I’d hand over my email address for more?

E-books are a great way to get a niche market educated on something relevant to your product or business.

Brainstorm and figure out what your buyer personas or existing customers would like to learn about.

Sites like Quora and Answer the Public help fill in that gap by giving you insight into the common questions and problems your target customers want to be answered or solved.

You can then use these to create content for your inbound marketing campaign to generate leads.

Ask your social media fans and followers what they’d like to learn about, or even ask your email list!

We’ve found many different methods for generating leads, but search engines are still the biggest driver of leads for our business.

Keeping an eye on our rankings for the long tail and high volume keywords, but primarily focusing on creating good content to acquire the right traffic will turn into qualified leads in the purchasing stage of sales.

Start filling your sales pipeline today

Search Engine Optimization - SEO

Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the process of customizing your online presence to meet the needs of search engines. In our opinion, ok Stephen’s opinion- SEO is the best way for software companies to drive brand awareness and sales. You can interject your brand’s solution into a question someone is searching for online.

You solve their question and provide them value. You can offer them something additional like a free ebook or pdf download. Then you can offer them a product or service (while they are on the page) to potentially help them with a problem that they really hadn’t even thought about yet. Next, if they don’t buy, you can follow up with them via text, emails, or retargeting ads across the web.

SEO is the main driver for Kennected’s website and if you’re not currently doing it, you’re missing out. Yes putting out the amount of content that we do is time-consuming and we have 4-5 different people that touch each article from content research to content writing, graphic creation, on-page SEO, and then publishing before it is ever live. But its evergreen content and in digital marketing, that’s the best kind of content. Stuff that you create once, and maybe update if new things come up, but can continue to drive traffic and leads into your machine for years to go.

For instance, if someone is looking for marketing software to help streamline their workflow, they might search key phrases like “how to schedule posts to social channels.

If your SaaS solves that problem, you should do everything to be the #1 result for that query.

Keeping an eye on our rankings for the long tail and high volume keywords, but primarily focusing on creating good content to acquire the right traffic will turn into qualified leads in the purchasing stage of their buyer’s journey.

So, if you make your website and other online content more attractive and relevant to search engines, they will display it more highly among search results, and you can drive more organic traffic.

Gong.io

 

Gong.io uses its library of data on sales revenue to create fresh, data-backed topics for sales leaders. Find your unique content marketing angle, and double down on it.

Website Optimization

Whether you’re focusing on organic traffic through content marketing, paid social media campaigns, or extensive email marketing programs, you’re directing prospects through your website.

If that’s the case, your website must be optimized for lead conversion.

So, if you make your website and other online content more attractive and relevant to search engines, they will display it more highly among search results, and you can drive more organic traffic to your website.

The result is that you will generate more potential customers because more people will see your products and services.

Your website is your best lead generator.

Encourage Company Reviews From Customers

Did you know that buyers are more likely to engage with vendors early in the buyer journey?

While in the research phase, 71% admit to accepting a contact request with a potential vendor.

And when you consider that 92% of B2B buyers also use online reviews to inform a purchase, the power of a presence on review sites is not to be ignored.

Fast Loading Times

According to data from Unbounce, conversions drop by 12% for every second it takes your pages to load.

The company’s findings also show that 81% of marketers know speed influences their conversions, but only 3% say optimizing page speed is a priority.

Slow loading times also hurt your ability to capture leads from organic search, which generates the vast majority of online traffic – 76% of all trackable B2B traffic, according to BrightEdge.

Free Tools

Earlier, we talked about HubSpot using its free CRM as a lead generation strategy, but you don’t have to offer an entire software platform for free to use this tactic.

HubSpot and many other SaaS companies run a collection of free tools that handle basic tasks of interest to their target customers.

For example, HubSpot has its free Website Grader tool that anyone can access and use to get a free performance report.

All users have to do is type in the URL of their website and their email address to access their report, which measures key performance metrics such as page size, page requests, and page speed.

Crazy Egg uses a similar strategy on its homepage by offering users a free heatmap of any web page.

Free trials effectively convert hesitant SaaS customers, but drawing free trial users in can still be challenging.

Kennected provides free mini-courses using our main tool Cloud Kennect, free LinkedIn messaging scripts, and a LinkedIn profile optimization guide.

Lower the entry bar to capture leads and nurture them into paying customers.

Highlight Competitive Advantages To Generate SaaS Leads

When your prospects start evaluating solutions, they have an extensive pool of vendors to review.

You need to explain the differentiators using case studies, statistics, and reference customers to gain a competitive edge.

Influencer Marketing

If you’re selling a CRM, engage with influencers that write about sales. If you’re selling an HR product, find the 100 people that are most important in that area.

Influencers can drive engagement and generate leads, but they can also help to increase conversion rates.

Include quotes from influencers in your sales copy and ask them to participate in webinars and other marketing activities.

Start filling your sales pipeline today

Referral Marketing

Word-of-mouth is easily the most useful marketing method as it plays into the natural behavior of humanity.

People can’t help themselves speak the truth about the world, including good and bad businesses.

Lead quality is far more critical than lead quantity.

After all, if you generate many leads who don’t purchase, or customers who purchase but quickly abandon your software, your SaaS won’t sustain true growth.

Referral marketing is the idea of companies encouraging their customers to talk about their services to generate leads.

Combinations

Perhaps no one lead generation strategy works best. Maybe it’s best to combine various lead generation strategies.

Successful pipeline marketing strategies for SaaS companies include a combination of services.

Create microtools, e-books, or white papers for informational or ancillary keywords around your product. Use this tool/content to collect emails addresses or get social shares.

If you’re not sure, that’s OK. Keep testing to find which inbound lead generation strategy best works for you.

Track Your Lead Generation Strategies

Key performance indicators, or lead generation KPIs, are metrics that help you check the performance of your lead generation efforts against the S.M.A.R.T. goal you’ve set.

They tell you which of your strategies are working and which ones need to be adjusted or improved.

This can help you figure out what you need to improve your lead generation, business model. This, in turn, can help you generate more leads for your brand.

Kennected Works With You

Well, a lot goes into demand generation B2B SaaS, and it is important to use B2B lead generation services as part of your digital marketing campaign.

Using the proven lead generation strategies above, SaaS companies can help their products stand out in front of an audience of savvy buyers who are spoiled for choice.

Successful lead generation for SaaS comes from a multi-channel approach. Put all your eggs in one basket, and none of them will hatch.

You’ve got to experiment, see what works best for your company, test, tweak, and try again.

Overall, this process can make a significant difference in the quality of your online presence.

So, place your company in the best position possible to be successful by generating qualified leads.

Kennected generates new leads, offers insight into your customers, and can help you increase your marketing ROI. If you liked this blog post, you’d probably love Kennected, too.

Remember that you can put Kennected’s software program and expert professionals to use as well.

This can save you time and money while also increasing your lead generation and conversion rates, which is precisely what you want to happen if you want to drive revenue growth for your company.

Kennected simplifies the B2B SaaS lead generation by providing you with the contact data of the decision-makers. We give you access to a complete buying center.

Just sign in and identify your ICP in our portal, get in touch with other decision-makers with direct dials and start the conversation.

Throughout every stage of the sales process, we’ll keep you informed, updated, and aware of all the moves we’re making to improve your sales pipeline.

Devin-Johnson is the CEO and founder of Kennected, located in Indianapolis, Indiana. The company provides lead generation software to small and medium-sized businesses.

Our SaaS marketing experts consistently supply essential tips for building your lead generation strategy.

A powerful demand generation program can also supplement your lead generation efforts.

Click here to learn more about LinkedIn’s #1 lead generation tool, Cloud Kennect.

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