Top 10 SaaS product marketing trends for 2020
Product marketing is more than an emerging trend among SaaS. In 2020 product marketers are leading the growth of their SaaS products. Their function is already consolidated in bigger companies and smaller businesses who don’t have a dedicated employee for the role are also implementing their best practices.
2020 will be remembered as a year of disruption. That’s why keeping up with the upcoming trends is key to stand out from the competition. There are plenty of tools and resources out there and the SaaS community is usually very open to share the best tips that can make the difference in a successful product marketing strategy.
Here are the top 10 SaaS product Marketing trends to watch out for in 2020:
- 1. Product-led strategy
- 2. Demand generation
- 3. Demos, video, and VR demonstrations
- 4. Customer Success
- 5. Personalization
- 6. Mutual Partnerships
- 7. Push notifications
- 8. No- code tools
- 9. Video marketing
- 10. Multi-channel marketing and selling
1. Product-led strategy
Gone are the days where you were given a certain product, and you just had to reach out leads and try to sell it. SaaS Product Marketing is moving towards a product-led strategy, where the product is the core and value adding asset. Your product, its evolution and the problems it solves for your users are the focus of this approach, so that it sells for itself.
Product teams should gather feedback and listen to customers to determine the upcoming new features and changes needed to support the changing demand and environment.
2. Demand generation
Another important goal of Product Marketing is actually generating the demand for their product. Content generation and specifically informative and educational content for your target audience is the one of most widespread demand generation tactics, and will continue having an indisputable place in the product marketing strategy.
For example, Hubspot, Shopify, and Mailchimp all create great content helping their customers to better use their products. By creating content around the questions and problems of their target market and including their products as part of the solution, they authentically push their products in an informative way. Good practice is to create content on the biggest questions and problems of your target audience as well as upcoming trends. Write from an informative and helpful intention first and make sure it is truly of value. Include your products as a natural addition.
Lastly, consider the best places to share the content. Your own blog’s subscribers are not enough, so, make sure you have a good SEO strategy so that your content ranks well. Sharing your articles in specialized groups in social media or even promoting your content through paid ads in your specific niche is another good practice.
3. Demos, video, and VR demonstrations:
Despite the whole discovery and purchase process getting faster and faster, customers still want to get a substantial amount of knowledge on a product before purchase. There is a new standard in information about products potential customers expect, particularly for service products. Demos and video demos are very popular and almost 100% necessary for digital products. What’s most important is that potential customers are able to check out products quickly and understand their features immediately to determine if it fits their needs. There are so many alternatives and competitors, it’s important your potential customers understand the value right away. Don’t mince words on your landing pages, sales pages, and descriptions: get straight to the value and features.
4. Customer Success
Customer Success will play a key role for user retention and engagement. Those SaaS businesses hit by the Covid-19 crisis, will have to focus on maintaining revenue levels and reducing churn. On the other hand, other SaaS platforms might have an extra boom in their demand, and a proper onboarding process and customer support is essential to acquire new customers.
A great resource for improved Customer Success is live chat. With your shop online technically open “24/7”, your customers expect 24/7 service as well, in a way. Chatbots and live chat within SaaS websites and actually within products has become somewhat of an expectation.
Customers have plenty of alternatives and alternate sources of information they will go to if they cannot get answers to their questions right away. Live chat takes that away when you provide it right during the decision making process.. Live chat and chat bots also help customers learn, implement, and realize the value in SaaS products as they start to use them, ensuring long term success. As SaaS companies grow and more users join your product, it’s hard to manage this. Live chat with AI to distribute automated responses helps “serve” your growing global customer base.
Customers from all around the world now expect personalized service. Personalization used to be a luxury some ‘cool’ companies played with on their sites, but now it’s essentially a necessity to get and keep a customer’s attention. 79% of consumers say they are only likely to engage with an offer if it has been personalized to reflect previous interactions the consumer has had with the brand. From offers, to emails, and even discounts, personalization and data collection on your customers should be involved to boost sales. This has really moved beyond trend to ‘necessity’. Particularly with SaaS products, there is likely a long decision making process when it comes to conversion and implementation of a product. You need to nurture leads over time with personalization.
6. Mutual Partnerships:
Many companies are joining forces to offer their target customers a blend of two of their favorite experiences. As naturally more products and services are connected and used in tandem online, companies are seeing opportunity for collaboration. Most examples of this are is software and apps, but there are eCommerce products as well. Not only does the natural use help marketing the products but often the co-branding combines the strength and audience of two closely linked brands. Some examples include Uber and Spotify (music on your ride), Bumble + Instagram + Spotify (create a complete dating profile), and even us: Beamer + Intercom (live chat and news feed updates). Many of these brands cross over in target audience and a partnership can really help boost sales for both. You can also partner with your customers. Affiliate programs can be very helpful in drawing new leads and customers just like your current base by using their influence and reach to the mutual benefit of you both.
7. Push notifications:
As consumers online open emails and single-digit rates, it’s been about time marketers start looking at other options to reach customers. A really popular one that is getting higher open and engagement rates is push notifications. The average push notification open rate is 53.3%, which is crazy high. It’s natural for users both on desktop and mobile to receive notifications that open up windows and apps; the whole process requires less work. It’s more in context and direct than sending something to an email inbox. Beamer is a great option for push notifications.
Beamer is a changelog and news feed that sits within your site. You can share updates for anything, including announcements for new features, on it and add photos, videos, GIFs, and CTAs. It opens up when someone clicks the “What’s New” tab in your navigation or icon in your interface. It acts as a central place for all your updates and messages. Beamer has the option to enable push notifications so that those who have visited your site who have opted in get a message when you post an update. When they click, they return to your site with the Beamer feed open. It’s a great way to bring back interested leads or customers and engage them on your site right away.
8. No- code tools:
SaaS is about constant improvements and rapid changes. And usually development teams are too busy to work on urgent stuff. That’s why no-code tools are the perfect solution to implement updates or have new data resources without coding skills. The number of this type of tools is increasing (luckily) and they can be applied to the most common marketing needs, such as landing pages or email automations to more complex processes such as heatmaps, or AI-driven chatbots.
Beamer is another example of a no-code tool. You can install it in you website or app in a few minutes to have your own product’s changelog or company’s newsfeed.
9. Video marketing:
Video has been outperforming other mediums heavily exponentially over the last few years. Thanks to YouTube, it’s exploding on social as the preferred medium of social media users. Marketers who use video grow revenue 49% faster than non-video users. Promotional videos and video content outperform simple branded posts and are much more engaging. Video production can be expensive, especially for professionally shot videos but there are so many emerging tools that are helping marketing teams produce effective videos quickly. Wave Animatron has a ton of stock video and photo and a drag and drop editor that helps you make quick branded content. Shakr is also amazing for making super graphic brand videos to announce sales, new products, etc.
10. Multi-channel marketing and selling:
The average customer of yours has multiple platforms online they’re apart of and check regularly. They all make up their collective profile and personality online. Many companies are taking advantage to get to know and engage their target customer across multiple channels. It’s imperative your brand has multiple active profiles and you interact with your customers across them. Many brands are taking advantage of using social media profiles to present different offers and sell directly from the platforms, which customers are moving towards. Now is the time to beef up those profiles and make them the first point of engagement with customers.
As a product marketing manager, you need to ensure your customers get the right understanding and value of your product, easy and quickly. Jumping on board and understanding these trends well are imperative to staying relevant and moving at the right velocity with your target audience and competitors.