SaaS startups can find new customers, enhance their marketing, and grow their business by focusing on a specific industry niche. Doing so can be savvy, but can also present complications – including how to speak simultaneously to both niche and general audiences.
How can you connect with a broad audience, yet still telegraph to your niche, in a way that shows you can serve them both particularly well?
There are a number of SaaS strategies to consider when crafting your message to reach multiple audiences at the same time. Sometime the best way to identify successful SaaS marketing strategies is to look at how other SaaS companies understood their target markets and thrived. In this article, we spotlight how BombBomb successfully markets to both niche and general audiences – and how you can, too!
Website: Focus on Your Core Messaging
It’s important to let people who arrive at your homepage know your specialization but also that your offering can help people in other industries. How strongly you tilt the messaging on your site toward your niche will depend in part on what percentage of your business is in that niche or how aggressively you’re moving into that niche. That calculation will likely change over time.
Consider how BombBomb, a Lighter Capital client that helps its customers leverage video messaging in their email communications, approached this challenge – they use fairly subtle messaging to signal that they have offerings targeted to the real estate industry.
BombBomb’s website has a section that lists the industries where their software is in use, including real estate, with links to dedicated pages on those industries. Focusing the core of their messaging on a generalized audience reflects BombBomb’s increasingly wide range of customers that complements a robust segment of real estate professionals.
To be more overt in how you speak to website visitors, you can consider directing your visitors to self-select. One option is putting a drop-down toward the top of the home page that lets visitors choose either their industry or what problem they are trying to solve.
Email and Newsletter Communications
Communications that are sent to individuals, such as emails and newsletters, have the most potential to be customized to reflect a customer’s niche. BombBomb makes different versions of such communications — one for the general audience and one for the niche real estate audience.
“We would do a real estate nurture sequence and an ‘everybody else’ sequence,” says Ethan Beute, VP of marketing at BombBomb.
The emails for those who work in real estate use more real estate-related language and examples. The newsletters for the two audiences are similar, but with some of the content focused on real estate for the niche audience.
Blogging and Social Media
Blogging is another area where companies can talk to multiple audiences due to the volume of content and ability to strategically promote it. BombBomb’s blog has a mix of real estate-related stories and pieces that apply to a general audience, which Beute keeps in a careful balance.
Beute leverages the company’s niche content for a general audience by promoting it on social media using language that can appeal to business people in general. If a blog post is a real estate use case that is applicable to everybody else as well, he will promote it to a real estate audience by highlighting its applicability to real estate while also posting it as a general business use case to appeal to a wider audience.
“You never want to turn off the mainstream by being too outwardly real estate focused,” says Beute. “At the same time, you have to take care and include it.”
Social media also allows companies to speak directly to their niche audience via dedicated groups and pages. For example, BombBomb created a Facebook group that is restricted to real estate and mortgage professionals.
Sales and Product Development
Just like online communication, the sales team can divide their messaging to speak to varying audiences. At BombBomb, the sales team has separate decks for different industries. When the company first started focusing heavily on real estate, the team had a “real estate” deck and a “non-real estate” deck, with salespeople learning to present both. Eventually certain salespeople began to specialize in the niche sales.
The software development team isn’t typically oriented toward dividing its work between niche and general audiences. However, creating products that appeal distinctly to the niche audience is a great way to gain traction and deepen your reach in the industry.
When the company is developing a new offering or extra features meant for the niche audience, developers may need to spend time talking to professionals in the niche to understand their needs, wants and pain points. At BombBomb, the product team consulted extensively with real estate pros to learn how they should develop the company’s more robust platform specifically for the industry.
Learning how to serve and speak to a niche audience while maintaining your relevance and appeal to a wide audience is a challenge that can pay off with interest and loyalty from a broad base of customers. Spending the time to customize a portion of your web presence, email and social media communications, sales and product development for your niche will be time well spent.
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