24, Aug 2022
As a rule, newly launched SaaS services are very limited in funds. They are not only inaccessible to the tactics of “flooding the market with money”, which became popular in eCommerce a couple of years ago due to the arrival of “big” money in Runet. Often, most of the traditional tools for attracting visitors to promotional sites are not available to startups. With this in mind, in the promotion strategy, I want to highlight three main areas that allow you to operate on a limited budget.
- FORMATION OF DEMAND.
An important task for an innovative product is to create demand for a new way of solving a problem (no one has canceled the existing solution). This activity involves not so much bombarding potential users with suggestions to solve all their problems (although it does not exclude it), but rather conveying your vision of the solution and positioning yourself as an expert in solving such problems.
Thanks to XYZ positioning, you have an understanding of your audience. In 99% of cases, this audience has a thematic platform, community, group, forum, mailing list, or some other platform for online communication. The owners of these platforms tend to monetize their sites through ads and will almost always be happy with good content. You should not try to place press releases in such places, no one reads them. And frank advertising will not meet anything but negativity at all.
Instead, share interesting information! After all, you conducted research on your audience, identified its needs, analyzed the market .. Make a mini-report out of this. Are you making an app for bikers? Surely you have information on the distribution of motorcycle brands among motorcycle owners in Moscow (or New York?) Are you writing a service for analysts? Tell us about what systems are used in the market, what are their strengths and weaknesses. If there is no inspiration at all, just translate a few Western articles.
Naturally, your service can also be mentioned in the article. You should not make it the center of the article, let it be a simple caption “Material prepared by A.B. Petrov, manager of the service for solving problem X http://example.com”, or a short mention in the text like “we in example.com solved problem X in the Z way”.
Engage with communities.
Subscribe to new topics or community posts on your topic. Someone sooner or later will have a problem that your service can solve. In addition, each community has so-called opinion leaders. Ask them to try your product, act as experts, give their opinion, write a review or even a review. Do not be afraid of failure, the very request will emphasize the expert status of a person and flatter him, even if you get a refusal. And if you agree, be sure to process the feedback and make minor improvements, informing the expert about it. This will connect him to your product and perhaps make him your advocate or even evangelist.
Participate in industry events.
Industry conferences are held across the country several times a month. The cost of placing a stand on them can vary from several tens to several hundred thousand rubles and is not suitable for everyone. You can show yourself at events in a different way.
Make a presentation.
Do not advertise under any circumstances. The approach to the content of the speech should be the same as when working with platforms: maximum useful content.
Chat with potential clients.
At the largest events (such as the “Russian Internet Forum” or “Russian Internet Week”), your potential customers cannot be missing.
Try to get a slot through structures that support startups.
At the above-mentioned RIW and RIF, the so-called Upstart Conf is held as a separate stream, which makes it possible to talk about the project or even get a stand at the exhibition. Microsoft provides strong support for startups using its technologies. We can talk about both free software provision and marketing support (highlights in stores, news on websites and mailing lists, slots at conferences, and so on).
Participate in online events.
There are many online activities that can support you. For example, Maxim Spiridonov periodically conducts a “debriefing” for startups in the format of a webinar, in which, as a rule, dozens of people participate, and hundreds watch the recording. The Seopult-TV channel recently launched the “Terrapiya” program, the participants of which thoroughly analyze the Internet project (the number of views here is already in the thousands).
Attend startup events and competitions.
Not the most effective method for getting customers, however, it will help you get feedback on the product, which will be sorely missed at the start, as well as help you make useful contacts, which we will talk about a little later.
- WORKING WITH THE FORMATED DEMAND.
Despite all the innovativeness of your product, the current solution to the same problem X has a small but steady demand. about fifty