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Does your product marketing feel stuck? Maybe everything seems in place, but the results aren’t what you were expecting.
Don’t worry — every marketer has a campaign that will underperform from time to time. But ongoing challenges with healthcare SaaS marketing could be symptoms of a larger, overarching problem: your strategy is off somehow. Sarah Loeffler, Spot On’s Content Director, explains how to spot when your marketing strategy is in trouble, how several strategy missteps can affect your success and ways to correct course.
Use this checklist to determine if your healthcare SaaS marketing efforts need more strategic direction.
Every business owner has the same 24 hours in a day, so why are some much more successful with knocking out their projects than others? According to Loeffler, it comes down to strategic prioritization – knowing what to focus on and what to forget.
“There’s always something that you could spend more time doing to improve in some way,” Loeffler explains. “Startups can think about it just like with their product: There are always features you want to add or refine. Your marketing is no different: You need to be disciplined about what’s getting your focus.”
When you understand the critical activities necessary for your SaaS marketing campaign and you rarely have time to complete them, this is a sign that you need to revisit your broader strategy. Identifying which campaigns and their elements are most critical to your business and aligning resources accordingly will best position your company for success.
When generating leads for your sales team, very few tactics will get you more bang for your buck than having your website rank in search results. However, search engine optimization (SEO) is a complex, dynamic field of healthcare technology marketing that doesn’t get results overnight and requires skill and discipline to maintain
“Search is such a big driver for filling the pipeline, and yet you often see where people aren’t working with the strongest strategy,” explains Loeffler. To rank for the right keywords, you need a plan that brings together competitive research and insights, technical and on-page SEO expertise, content and audience knowledge, and a deep understanding of the funnel. It must also be a living plan, as search behaviors and SEO best practices constantly evolve. “You can do great and be ranking one moment, but if your strategy has gaps in any of the areas just mentioned or isn’t built for you to continually track and test and grow with the right frequency, it’s easy to begin losing rank.”
Data overload indicates your marketing team needs to be aligned on the most important metrics to track and manage. The modern world of data analytics is jam-packed with different kinds of numbers and information. It’s easy to get lost in less critical or vanity metrics related to your SaaS product marketing strategy.
“There are so many data points you can be tracking across your website, email, paid ads, search rankings, social and events, as well as frequency level,” adds Loeffler. “You need to clearly understand which numbers indicate you are truly moving the needle around your business goals.”
One trend has ruled for a while in the marketing realm: personalization. The more you can make your healthcare technology marketing sound like it was written specifically for your prospects, the better chance they’ll be receptive and continue to progress through your marketing funnel. Using the right tools in a marketing strategy, B2B SaaS companies can add personalization without a significant manual effort.
If you’re struggling with personalization, your underlying approach to building an audience may need review. Is your strategy set up to get the right types of information from prospects in the right ways? Sometimes even minor tweaks to ensure your marketing automation technology is set up correctly can have big payoffs. For example, are you able to target your audience geographically or gain more insights about their pain points with progressive forms?
Stepping back to ensure your SaaS product marketing strategy builds in ways to capture the right information about prospects and effectively uses this information for more granular targeting is key.
“The only thing worse than not enough leads is the wrong lead,” says Loeffler. Targeting the wrong audience can significantly waste your team’s time and resources—especially if you target paid ads or mistakenly have your sales team make outreach. “Not enough at-bats with the right people shows your audience strategy isn’t sound. Somewhere along the way you've got trouble in how you’re building and qualifying prospects,” explains Loeffler. “Sometimes, there are assumptions about list building and management that need to be tested. I’ve seen marketers try to build ‘lookalike’ audiences on social and go terribly off track. There’s a significant difference between reaching somebody in IT at a hospital versus the person working in reception at a hospital. The right strategy has you finding prospects in the right areas, using the right offers to draw them in, and then taking the right steps to nurture and prune these leads over time.”
You may be overwhelmed by the sheer number and complexity of the channels available to reach prospects. But you probably don't need to be on all of them. The right strategy will keep you focused on the best ways to reach prospects, leads, and existing customers to support your business goals.
Some IT vendors may be tempted to try their hand at, say, marketing on Instagram––not because prospects and their competitors are having meaningful connections there, but merely for the sake of saying they are there.
Instead, every use of a channel should have a goal behind it and an understanding of how marketing on the channel can work toward achieving this goal. If you don’t know what you’re doing on a channel, you can waste time and money—or worse, damage your brand’s reputation.
There's a world of difference between posting to friends on social media and running paid social campaigns. “Running ad campaigns with an experienced manager ensures that the conversion event is set up appropriately, that you're bidding most efficiently, that you've targeted your audience appropriately, and that you're setting campaigns for the right length of time,” Loeffler points out.
Your SaaS product marketing strategy should have a clear vision for how you’ll be using channels backed by a mastery of these channels––or support from someone with this knowledge ––to ensure you’re making the most of opportunities to reach your goals.
The hallmark of any good SaaS product marketing strategy is the ability to experiment and improve. When you don’t have a sound strategy guiding these efforts, you can easily fall victim to chasing every idea and losing focus, testing too many variables at once, or, more likely, not testing and refining often enough. For example, some companies build or redesign their website and consider it done until the next big update. “Your website should never be thought of as ‘Now it’s done.’ As people interact with your website, you’ll learn things as you go,” says Loeffler. The most successful healthcare SaaS companies have a predetermined list of elements to test.
If you notice testing is not happening or only happens sporadically when something doesn’t go well, this is a sign your strategy needs to be driving effort.
As you implement your marketing strategy, B2B SaaS companies should have a plan for how they will adjust spending over time in line with changing business goals and campaign performance.
“It’s easy to get into that rut of, ‘Okay, here’s my budget for the year, here’s how I’ve typically allocated it, and I’m just going to go forward with that,’” says Loeffler. “You want to invest in those areas that best support company goals and double down on what’s working well for you while pulling back on the things that aren’t.” In other words, when the strategy is leading, your business goals, budget, and the areas you prioritize with this budget evolve together.
Many companies face challenges with sales and marketing alignment for this reason: Despite dealing with the same prospects and customers, sales reps and marketers often work in different ways with different views of your product, industry, and audience. Successful companies can minimize these differences with a unified goal and strategy. You hear the same challenges in many organizations: The marketing team thinks they’re doing everything they can to bring in leads. Meanwhile, the sales staff feels like, ‘I’m getting these names and they’re not valuable enough, or why can’t marketing bring in more leads?’”
“Often this is because there's not a good sense of what a quality lead should look like or a shared sense of what needs to go into qualifying that person before they hit sales,” says Loeffler. “The right strategy will try to unify everyone around the customer journey, map and score interactions, and have everyone working off the same pool of data to develop a shared understanding of the lead’s progress.”
If your company is experiencing any of these issues — or even suspects you might have them soon — it’s probably a sign that something is off with your SaaS product marketing strategy. One easy fix for this is bringing on an outside consultant to help diagnose issues and formulate a strategy to correct them. A healthcare SaaS marketing agency can help you develop a more strategic perspective using their extensive industry knowledge and experience.
Schedule a call with Spot On to learn how we can help you build a more effective SaaS marketing strategy that best reflects your business’s goals, strengths and opportunities.
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