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The Future of SaaS: Change is Good

By Joe Davis - Digital Sales Executive

Mar 04, 2020

About 6 minutes

Change. A word so often heard, but rarely examined. The tech landscape is always changing. That’s a fact. While nothing about the business of technology is evergreen, perhaps the most rapid changes (and sharpest growth curve) happens within the Software as a Service (SaaS) community. Let’s look at some of the trends, metrics, and potential challenges that SaaS companies will be up against in 2020 and beyond:

...I’m sensing a theme here, how about you?

SaaS companies face a multitude of “shifting sands” when it comes to what their customers want, need, and ask for and how they are to relay that information to those customers. These ever-changing dynamics mean you either: (1) adapt and grow, or (2) stagnate and disappear.

It’s harsh, but true.

Office space with computers

Constant changes in the SaaS world apply to every single facet of the business. What this means is that considerations such as the product, website, message, marketing, audience, and content used to reach this audience is a moving target. Given the desire to maintain a lean, efficient budget with data-driven ROI and repeatable results, companies may need to contend to A LOT of moving pieces. And although efficiency with marketing dollars is vital regardless of industry, that rule holds even more value in the often VC-funded SaaS community. Here’s why.

A New Frontier

Imagine a place where budgets can disappear with one or two undesirable dips in ROI — where a piece of content might go from “thought leadership” to “outdated” overnight.

What should you do to stay in front of the changes and make sure that your marketing dollars are spent wisely and effectively?

TSL is here to help. 

It’s highly likely that a software development company with an annual growth rate of 20% has only an 8% chance of surviving. This indicates a need for rapid growth and consistent adaptability in order to compete. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, what’s the common theme here?

You got it! CHANGE.

Change in Action

Let’s look at a high-level example of how this whole principle plays out. Working backward, we will look at the results and then talk methodology.

The Scenario

You’re the marketing manager for your SaaS organization, and for the last 2 years, you’ve spent $10,000 each month on Google paid search ads. Your ROI is a few grand below where it needs to be, and the amount of interested, qualified prospects clicking through your ads has remained the same for the last year. Now you’re facing rumors of a decrease in budget, which means fewer leads, which means…OH NO!Stressed out marketing professionalThe obvious conclusion to be drawn here is simple: “If I want to increase my qualified lead count, I simply need more ad budget, right?”

Not necessarily.

Through TSL’s hyper-specific targeting and segmentation strategy, and the iterative, omni-channel, and metric-driven approach that we have refined over 20+ years, we were able to take the customer above and beyond (yes, this is a real customer) and do something, dare I say…incredible:

With quite literally HALF of the ad spend (meaning $5k instead of $10k), we have maintained the amount of Marketing Qualified Leads through the first month and INCREASED the amount of MQLs heading into the second month.

Let’s break that down, shall we?

That’s $60,000 per year in savings + increasing the number of qualified prospects coming in the door.

Given the benefit of a long-term marketing strategy, and accounting for the ramp-up period that is always a part of procedural changes, I’d call that a win.

So, what gives? CHANGE, that’s what.Changing directions in cross walk One of the biggest (and most consistent issues) we see with our SaaS clients is ad waste. While common knowledge dictates that the quickest way to obtain more qualified leads for your sales team is to simply work to get a larger marketing budget approved, we’ve found (put simply) a more efficient and cost-effective way to do exactly that.

If we circle back to the fact that nothing is evergreen in this business, why then are ad campaigns, marketing efforts, and SEO often left unrefined? With every single channel out there constantly changing the way your content and conversion paths are ranked — and subsequently how they land in front of your potential customers — why then would the application of these consistent changes not be applied to everything you do?

The bottom line: ad waste is low-hanging fruit. It’s money that is leaking from an inefficient process and it’s one of the quickest ways you can increase ROI across the board.

Data is useless if it’s not put to good use. Interpretation must be actionable, and change must be constant. Maintaining results should never be the goal! When you look back at the last 3, 6 or 12 months, you want to see results that are worthy of a case study.

The bottom line is simple: Change happens, and it happens fast.

Want to make changes to your marketing strategy that can positively impact your ROI? Sign up for a Digital Ad Waste Assessment with one of our SaaS experts. 


Tags: ROI, marketing budget, SaaS Marketing, marketing spend, ad spend, Software as a Service, SaaS, ad waste, MSSP, MSP