CONTENT
MARKETING STRATEGY

FOR B2B SaaS COMPANIES

The competition within the B2B SaaS space is fierce, and you need a solid content marketing strategy to position your solution in the best possible way. A good content marketing strategy will help you draw companies to your B2B SaaS solution, help your company gain loyal customers, and increase ROI.

To help you develop that strategy, we’ve put together this comprehensive guide full of great insights.

Read on as we take you through the exact “how-to” guide on developing a content marketing strategy for B2B SaaS companies.

Steps to Developing a Content Marketing Strategy for B2B SaaS Companies

  • Step 1: Develop Your Ideal Customer Profile
  • Step 2: Develop Buyer Personas Based On the ICP
  • Step 3: Identify Your Sole Defining Purpose
  • Step 4: How Does Your SaaS Solution Help Solve Your Business Personas Problems?
  • Step 5: What Differentiates You from the Competition?
  • Step 6: Find and Market Your Unique Selling Point (USP)
  • Step 7: Identify What Your Business and Solution Is Not
  • Step 8: Understand Your Competition
  • Step 9: Understand Your Competitor’s Customers
  • Step 10: Think About What Your Competitors Are Doing Better or Worse Than Your Company
  • Step 11: The Buyer’s Journey and How You Fit into It
  • Step 12: The Main Stages of a B2B SaaS Buyer’s Journey and How You Can Help at Each Stage
  • Step 13: Develop a Pillar Content Strategy
  • Step 14: How Do You Develop a Pillar Content Strategy?

STEP 1:
DEVELOP YOUR IDEAL CUSTOMER PROFILE

Before creating marketing content, it is essential to know who your perfect customers are. Instead of focusing on individual buyers or personas, start by defining your ideal customer, profile, or ICP. This would be a company that would use your solution, remain a loyal customer for a long time, and recommend your solution to others. Finding your ICP will help you attract you higher quality leads (because your message is more targeted), create a longer customer lifetime value, drive more referrals, and improve your profit margins. You’ll also save time finding customers and increase the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns. Customer-centric growth expert and consultant Lincoln Murphy defines the ideal customer should have the following characteristics:

Finding a customer that fits all these characteristics is challenging, so it is crucial to think about which ones are the most important. According to Woodpecker, a company that creates a SaaS solution for lead generation and sales, the characteristics of an ICP differ depending on the point of view. For example, “from the sales point of view, the ideal customer should be eager to buy the product.” And “from the marketing point of view, the ideal customer should not only feel the value from the product but should be eager to spread the word about the solution.” But from a SaaS perspective, success potential is the most important.

If A Company Achieves Success Because Of Your Solution,
They Will Most Likely:

  • Spread the word about your product
  • Give you a great testimonial for your website and honestly say that they are reaching their goals with your product
  • Keep using your product as long as they can see effects
  • Buy additional subscriptions as they grow
  • Be able to pay for a year in advance
  • Offer you feedback
  • Organize their processes around your solution because it brings them value

Finding your ICP will help you target the right audience from the beginning. To do this, think about which companies that will achieve total success by using your SaaS solution. And when developing content, be clear in your marketing messages about how your solution will help your ICP accomplish this.

Book time with our team to learn how you can develop your ideal customer profile.

STEP 2:
DEVELOP BUYER PERSONAS BASED ON THE ICP

After you develop your ICP, create buyer personas from them. This is essential because all your marketing needs to be tailored to the personas you want to target—the specific people who your sales reps will talk to or the people who will click on your ads or read your content.

For example, one of your ICPs could be an online clothing retail store, specifically an online retail store. Be as specific as possible with your ICP. Is it a small local online retailer or a big-box online retail store? These two organizations might have similar goals, but how they reach those goals and their yearly revenue are going to be quite different. As such, their buyer personas may be different, thus altering the messaging to each persona.

From this, you can create buyer personas of specific people who work for this company, like the head of marketing or a leader in operations. Think about who the people are that will be making a purchase decision and using your SaaS product. By developing buyer personas, you’ll attract more relevant leads and increase your marketing ROI. According to Hubspot, Skytap—a self-service provider of cloud automation solutions—launched a tailored content marketing strategy and by using targeted personas, they lifted sales leads 124%. This could not have happened without being very specific about who they were targeting in their buyer personas.

Most companies usually develop two to five personas. When developing personas, consider those buyer personas’ challenges instead of targeting every person you deal with. According to Hubspot: “when you turn your focus to the challenges you’re solving for, you can think about how these personas consume information and define what their ideal buying process might look like. Your teams are able to adjust how they are communicating with leads based on your buyer persona information.”

Get as specific as possible about your personas. Give them a name like Supply Chain Sarah or Vanessa VP of Operations. It helps to find a stock photo to put a face to the name. Some companies even make life-size cardboard cutouts of their personas.

STEP 3:
IDENTIFY YOUR SOLE DEFINING PURPOSE

When companies look for a solution to their problems, they will most likely shop around and consider different solutions. Hence, you have to be aligned in all your marketing messages and make sure your potential future clients understand exactly how you will help them from the first time they hear about you. You have to know your”why”. What is your sole purpose for existing? Keep in mind, you are different than other applications that are similar to yours—and you need to highlight that. SaaS application features and technical capabilities can start to overlap, which can be expensive for your organization, difficult to track, and incredibly confusing for employees. So it’s vital to make sure your “why” and messaging is crystal clear.

Book time with our team to learn how you can identify your sole defining purpose

Step 4:
How Does Your SAAS Solution Help Solve Your Buyer Persona’s Problems?

Be as clear and specific as you can in your marketing messages. Talk about how your solution can help with specific tasks and solve specific problems. For example, you may want to talk about how your solution:

For Example, You May Want To Talk About How Your Solution:

  • Helps keep information organized in the cloud
  • Allows every member of the supply chain to always have the latest information about products or
    shipment status, no matter what level they’re at or which time zone they’re in
  • Removes the need for onsite infrastructure, which reduces costs
  • Reduces the number of back-and-forth emails and phone calls
  • Allows trading partners and suppliers to synchronize product information with global standards
  • Provides visibility into end-to-end sale process.

Book time with our team to learn how to solve your buyer persona’s problems.

Step 5:
What Differentiates You From The Competition?

Potential clients want to know what you can offer them that your competitors can’t. Does your solution have any features that other software doesn’t? Talk about these.

If not, talk about how the services you offer set you apart:

  • Do you go out of your way to ensure that you offer the best customer service/support?
  • Is your sales and onboarding process easier than other companies’?
  • Do you offer a free trial?
  • Can you target a more specific, smaller niche?

STEP 6:
FIND AND MARKET YOUR UNIQUE SELLING POINT (USP)

Your USP is what makes your business, and the solution that you offer, unique—no one else on the market provides this but you. Before doing any type of marketing, it is essential to find your USP—this is what will help you sell your products and win customers that will come back.

Talk to some of your customers and drill down to the real reason why they chose your solution over your competitor’s—you can use this information in marketing content.

STEP 7:
IDENTIFY WHAT YOUR BUSINESS AND SOLUTION IS NOT

Customers and investors always want to know what your business and solution is so that they know what they will be getting. Employees at your workplace also always want to know this, as it defines what your company stands for, how it earns revenue, and basically works as a North Star to guide them when talking about the company.

From a branding perspective, it should be clear what your solution is so that your messaging is always consistent. Like most branding, SaaS branding is about your customers, and how you want them to recognize your solution and company in general.

There are some questions you can ask to help identify what your business is:

  • What makes you distinct and stand out from your competitors?
  • Why do customers choose your services?
  • How unique is your product or service, and can it be easily reproduced?

To get a stronger idea of what your business or solution is, it helps to identify what it is not. According to the Harvard Business Review, an anti-identity or an anti-strategy can be equally useful for communicating with customers, employees, and investors.

They go on to explain that Uber’s leaders took a while to settle on a solid business model, but in the meantime, “we’re not a taxicab company” provided its own kind of definition.

Through a Study, The Harvard Business Review Discovered That Having an Anti-Identity Can Help a Company Identify:

  • Whether it wants investors
  • What kind of company they do not want to become
  • Who handles the finances
  • How they treat customers
  • What really matters to them
  • How technologically advanced they are

The company they conducted the study on said that the anti-identity approach allowed them to connect to change initiatives and remain loyal to and emotionally engaged with the company.

The best way to find your anti-identity is by thoroughly understanding your competition and their customers. This way, you’ll see what they’re doing wrong and what you won’t want to be.

Book time with our team to learn how to identify your USP

Step 8:
Understand Your Competition

Find out as much as possible about how your competitors do business. You can start by finding out:

  • What products or services they offer, and how they market them
  • How they distribute and deliver them
  • What prices they charge
  • What devices they use to increase customer loyalty, and what backup service they offer
  • How they use IT

Step 9:
Understand Your Competitor’s Customers

Take a close look at their customers and try to find out:

  • What products or services various customers buy from your competitors
  • What customers see as your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses
  • If they have any long-standing customers
  • If they’ve had a recent influx of customers
  • What types of customer they’re targeting
  • What new products they’re developing
  • What financial resources they have

Understanding Your Customers Thoroughly is Important Because Once You Do, You’ll be Able to:

  • Identify what opportunities they’re missing out on, and take advantage of them
  • See who is working with them, and use those profiles to hone your own target market
  • See who is following/liking their content on social media and engage with that audience
  • Figure out their USP and how to differentiate yours from theirs
  • Know exactly what makes your solution different from theirs and pinpoint your competitive advantages.

Knowing these things about your competitors will enable you to better target your customers, minimize risks, lower costs, and win them over.

STEP 10
THINK ABOUT WHAT YOUR COMPETITORS ARE DOING BETTER OR WORSE THAN YOUR COMPANY

  • Look at the solution’s features—do they have something that yours doesn’t have?
  • How does their website compare to yours? Does it include things that make it easier to understand their offering? Are there any parts of your website that you can improve on?
  • How easy is it to get in touch with their support or customer service team? How about yours?
  • How does their marketing material compare to yours?

ONCE YOU EVALUATE THEM, PUT THE INFORMATION INTO THREE CATEGORIES:

  1. What you can learn from and do better
  2. What they’re doing worse than you
  3. What they’re doing the same as you

You can act on the competitor information by improving in the areas that your competitors are doing better than you, whether that means improving your website, pricing, or marketing.

STEP 11
THE BUYER’S JOURNEY AND HOW YOU FIT INTO IT

In one of our previous articles, we talked about The Buyer’s Journey. To recap, the buyer’s journey is a series of steps that buyers—potential customers or leads—go through before deciding to purchase a product or a service.

If you are a B2B business, it’s essential to create content for every stage of the buyer’s journey because, in today’s digital age, B2B buyers at all stages will turn to online content before making a decision to buy a product or a service. Hence, it’s essential to produce helpful online content—and the right ones—for every stage of the buyer’s journey so that you can build trust and credibility along the way.

Online content is a must-have because when your audience searches for answers online, your content ideally provides solutions or offers them a good perspective. So, it’s essential to have a good content  marketing strategy tailored to buyers at every stage of the buyer’s journey.

STEP 12
THE MAIN STAGES OF A B2B SAAS BUYER’S JOURNEY AND HOW YOU CAN HELP AT EACH STAGE

The Awareness Stage

light bulb icon

During the awareness stage, the potential buyer becomes aware that there is a problem within the supply chain that needs to be solved. So they start to research and gather information on how to solve that problem.

Where you come in: you need to understand the customer’s pain points and challenges. This way, you can create content to show how your SaaS solution can help them. For example, if they are having trouble streamlining their process, you can create infographics, blog posts, or videos demonstrating how your product helps streamline the process.

The Consideration Stage

man with gear

At this stage, the buyer has looked at your solution and all your competitor’s solutions. They also have a better understanding of what they need.

Where you come in: you need to convince them that you are the only one who has what they need. Create content that shows credibility: white papers, case studies of others who have used your solution, testimonials and reviews, and even live events like webinars to showcase the product and your expertise.

The Decision Stage

lightening bulb head icon

At this stage, the buyer is ready to spend money on your product.

Where you come in: you still need to give them a final nudge to ensure they don’t change their mind and go with your competitor. Your content needs to be great. Consider giving a free trial of your product, free demos and consultations, a phone or online sales session, or a persuasive sales presentation. Go the extra mile and create physical, printed brochures and booklets.

The Retention Stage

nothin beats a good old fashion handy

This stage is all about building long-term relationships with your buyer so that you get repeat business.

Where you come in: you need to make them feel valued and like part of your community. Create content that constantly keeps them updated, such as email campaigns, newsletters, social media content, live stream videos, blog posts, and podcasts. Make sure that they know you are still thinking about them and how your solution can help their business.

Book time with our team to learn how you can help at each stage of the buyers journey.

STEP 13
DEVELOP A PILLAR CONTENT STRATEGY

In marketing, pillars are also known as buckets. These are the different topics that you market to each one of your target personas.

If you’re creating a lot of marketing content, it’s easy to lose focus on the who and the why.

The who is the audience you’re trying to target. In your case, when developing your marketing content, it’s important to remember that they should be targeted to the supply chain buyer personas.

The why is the reason you’re creating the content. In your case, you want to help companies make their supply chain process more efficient with your SaaS solution.

STEP 14
HOW DO YOU DEVELOP A PILLAR CONTENT STRATEGY?

Develop Content Pillars

Developing content pillars allows you to create content that provides value to the target personas. Your content needs to speak to their challenges, frustrations, and pain points. It should also be clear that your solution will help them meet their goals. All your content should focus on providing a valuable customer experience for your targets. Your goal is to solve their problems (both spoken and unspoken)—this way, you’ll gain trust and loyalty.

SOME EXAMPLES OF CONTENT PILLARS AND STRATEGIES FOR B2B SAAS SOLUTION VENDORS COULD BE:

  1. Increasing ROI
  2. Streamlining the process
  3. Bridging communication gaps between vendors and manufacturers
  4. Gaining visibility into operations
  5. Increasing sustainability

These types of content produced with these pillars could include pillar pages, case studies, white papers, long-form video interviews.

Create a Pillar Page

This is a single webpage that makes it easy for your targets to find all the information they need in one place. It provides a high-level overview of your pillars and then is divided into sub-pages that showcase the different pillars. The goal of creating a pillar page is to have content that ranks well in search engines and draws your targets to your page.

Repurpose Your Company’s Content and Tie Them to the Buyer’s Journey

Instead of creating content about your product, create content around what your customers need and how you can solve their problems. Don’t assume what they need—take the time to understand your target personas and learn about their needs.

From this, you can make sure that each piece of content speaks to your target and that it’s the right type of content. If you know that your audience uses social media, create things like quick videos and catchy social posts that will appeal to them. Make sure to consider what stage of the buyer’s journey they are at, and create content accordingly.

By taking the time to craft a good content marketing strategy, your company will attract more repeat customers and gain brand loyalty. We’re happy to work with you to make sure you develop the right target personas and help create content that showcases your expertise.

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW THIS STRATEGY AND HOW CONTENT CALLOUT COULD HELP YOUR TEAM, BOOK TIME.