Content is a cornerstone of most SaaS companies’ marketing strategies. And that’s precisely the problem — when there’s high-quality content around every corner, how can you stand out to potential customers (and convert them into leads)?
We’ve been helping SaaS brands with their content marketing for over a decade. In that time, we’ve pretty much nailed the fundamentals of creating content programs that get the job done.
Here are five tips every SaaS company should follow for content marketing:
- Set goals for your content
- Know your audience
- Prioritize quality over quantity
- Aim for evergreen content
- Fine-tune your content management process
Let's dive in.
1. Set goals for your content.
Are you creating content just because? It sounds silly, but many marketers get caught up in the cult of content and forget to ask the pivotal question: why?
If you don’t have a goal for your content, you’ll never know if it’s working. Even worse, you’ll end up spending a whole lot of money and energy on content that just…sits there.
So start with a goal. Here are some examples:
- Generating leads
- Attracting qualified organic traffic
- Building domain authority
- Equipping your sales team
- Establishing your organization as a thought leader
Different content formats and channels are appropriate for different goals.
For example, if your main goal is to build domain authority, high-level keyword-driven content like pillar pages are your best friend. If your goal is to establish your organization as a thought leader, syndicated or sponsored content might be the right call.
2. Know your audience
As you set out to create a new piece of content, decide which of your buyer personas it will target and how it will address their unique needs.
For example, some personas may feel comfortable with highly technical language, while others may not understand the jargon.
Pro tip: Creating content for an audience is different than creating content about an audience.
Lots of SaaS brands fall into the trap of stating their intentions a little too clearly (e.g., “As a CTO, we know you need great project management software for your team…”).
The better approach is to understand what your average CTO likes to read based on what publications and personalities they follow and what questions they have about your brand, and then make content that suits their tastes and preferences.
3. Prioritize quality over quantity
Hot take: All else being equal, one great big piece of content — like an ebook, guide, industry report, or interactive software tour — is usually better than a large batch of small, highly targeted content.
Why? Because with all the content out there, the bar for quality and value is high. Particularly when it comes to generating leads, people won’t just hand over their info for any old thing, especially if they can find something similar on your competitors’ sites.
It’s much easier to convince potential leads that a larger, more detailed piece of content is worthwhile. You can grow your contact list relatively quickly by offering your highest-value content at top-of-funnel touchpoints, like on your homepage or pinned posts on social media.
This isn’t meant to discourage you from creating blog posts and other short-form content. If you have the time and resources to put out a series of blogs and a larger content offer, that’s great!
But if you have to choose between the two, and your main goal is to generate leads, a larger content piece is usually the way to go.
4. Aim for evergreen content
Timely content has its place, but it’s not always worth the effort — it loses relevance quickly, and making frequent updates is time-consuming. Instead, favor evergreen topics with a high potential for long-term returns.
The good news is, you can still produce content that feels timely (e.g. “The Best HubSpot Integrations of 2022”) while minimizing future work for yourself. Once you create a template for your content piece, you can easily make relevant updates each year without starting from scratch.
5. Fine-tune your content management process
Content is like a car. You have to take it out for a spin every once in a while or it will start to rust.
Just like a vehicle, content decays over time. Google deprecates old content. Numbers become outdated. Links break. Internal messaging changes.
Many SaaS brands make the mistake of thinking content will do all the work for them. But a great content marketing strategy demands ongoing effort. That might mean:
- Tracking keyword positions and optimizing old content for SEO
- Updating featured content placements with the latest assets
- Updating email nurture workflows with new content
- Removing any content that isn’t serving your audience
Overall, an hour spent optimizing your old content might deliver much better ROI than an hour spent creating something new.
Additionally, choosing the right content management system (CMS) can save you hours of repetitive work, giving you more time to produce new stuff.
Examples of great SaaS content marketing
This all sounds great in theory, but what does it look like in practice? Let’s take a closer look at a couple of SaaS companies that are killing it in the content marketing department.
Intercom’s books demonstrate the “quality over quantity” approach, but with a twist. Many of their books are actually curated collections of blog posts, combined into one high-quality piece that drives leads.
Rio is a sustainability SaaS brand and a Salted Stone client. They’ve also leveraged high-quality content, together with SEO-focused blogs, to drive leads during their growth phase. Many of Rio’s content offers curate content from multiple sources into easy-to-scan guides that provide immediate value, and they’ve performed exceptionally well for this reason.
To sum up
SaaS content marketing success has a lot of different ingredients — you need to build trust, demonstrate your experience, and provide value for your audience, while also creating less work for yourself.
Still not sure where to start? Get in touch with us. As an agency with extensive SaaS experience, we can audit your existing content to assess your performance, then guide you through the process of creating and executing a winning content marketing strategy.