The idea that if you create a great product the users will come with no extra effort is still often debated in the IT communities. Yet, most SaaS companies choose to get better at marketing their products rather than wait and hope for the best. For a good reason: the market is booming. There are plenty of truly good products: it’s genuinely hard for the audience to bump into yours if it’s not marketed well.
Besides, there’re always companies that use marketing to its full potential. It becomes impossible to compete with them if you’re not on the same popularity level.
This post gives you some examples of how SaaS companies rocked specific marketing strategies, attracted millions of users, and became top in their respective niche. Surely, the strategies described won't be the only ones that led to success. And it goes without saying that the products of these companies are truly great products. However, sometimes it's also an idea, a specific campaign, or a general marketing strategy that gets the engine running.
Canva is a graphic-design tool website. It’s a freemium tool and a total lifesaver for companies that don’t have an in-house designer or anyone that has to do design without any skill or knowledge.
While the brand has indeed become popular due to its unique product and freemium model, its most successful growth method was influencer marketing. They went online and discovered brand evangelists: people who’ve talked about their brand, YouTubers that made video tutorials and even taught classes using Canva. At some point, they’ve also discovered that Guy Kawasaki’s social media graphics were designed with their tools. So naturally, they contacted him. Now Guy Kawasaki is Canva’s brand evangelist. His sole advocacy helped Canva double its users' numbers.
People don’t trust advertising, they ignore banners, and organic reach on social media is declining every day. Or so it feels like. Word-of-mouth, where each person tells their friend how good the X product is, is priceless. It's every marketer's life goal. However, how often do you discuss file hosting services with your friends even if you really enjoy yours?
Dropbox, a file hosting service (surprise, isn’t it) used a great way of facilitating, if not forcing, word-of-mouth. It used incentives: for example, it would give out a 500MB increase to both you and the person you referred to join when the signup process is pending. Dropbox also makes it very easy for users to tell one another about the product - you don’t have to take any extra steps to get your incentive.
According to Houston, referrals increased Dropbox signups by 60%.
Eager to get more SaaS marketing ideas? Check out three more stories on our blog!
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