How to Find Buyers for your SaaS Product
When you’re running an outbound sales programme you need a clear understanding of who you’re selling to.
When I ask who’s going to buy your product the worst response is “Our product is designed for every business.” That’s a terrible approach.
Even if that is true, there will be businesses in certain industries, certain geographies and with certain headcount totals, better suited to your product. Further, within each of those businesses there will be specific personas who will benefit from your product more than others.
You should be targeting these people first. Let’s dig into this a little further.
Outbound sales is hard. You’re approaching people that have never heard about you or your product and trying to convince them that if they buy it, life will be better.
You have no hope of doing this effectively unless you understand:
The pain points and priorities your product solves (both Strategic and Tactical)The personas that experience these problems.
A few quick definitions for you -
Pain points and priorities at a tactical level
Tactical pain is experienced day in and day out. It could be manual processing of information, using multiple systems to manage a business function or a lack of real time information.
Pain points and priorities at a strategic level
This is pain that has the potential to negatively impact the future prospects of an organisation at a high level. Think regulatory risk, shrinking profit margins, lack of innovation etc.
An outline of a potential buyer based on identifiable characteristics e.g. title, industry, location, company headcount etc.
How to identify your ICPs
Step 1 — List all of the tactical and strategic benefits.
This step is fairly straightforward. At a tactical level, what did you design your product to do? What is it helping an organisation to achieve? What do businesses with your product not have to worry about?
At a strategic level, what are the flow on effects for the organisation now that these tactical pains are no longer an issue? Have you increased profitability, increased production capacity, reduced costs or improved profit margins?
Step 2 — Identify the personas that would be interested in both the tactical and strategic benefits your product creates.
You can use a few techniques here to make this process more accurate:
-Look at your existing customer base and identify the common characteristics across your best customers. What is their title, what industry do they operate in, how big is their company, where are they located etc
-Look at the prospects that didn’t buy and see if you can identify common characteristics in these groups as well.
-Brainstorm with your team to identify persona’s that you think will be a good fit for your product.
At the end of this process you should be able to create a table that looks something like this:
This table provides us with the data points we need to create individual personas.
Identifying Unique Personas
From the information in the table we would be able to create the following personas based on Linkedin Sales Navigator Information:
VP Sales, 1–10 employees, Australia, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
Founder, 1–10 employees, Australia, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
CEO, 1–10 employees, Australia, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
VP Sales, 11–50 employees, Australia, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
Founder, 11–50 employees, Australia, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
CEO, 11–50 employees, Australia, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
VP Sales, 1–10 employees, NZ, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
Founder, 1–10 employees, NZ, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
CEO, 1–10 employees, NZ, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
VP Sales, 11–50 employees, NZ, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
Founder, 11–50 employees, NZ, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
CEO, 11–50 employees, NZ, SaaS, not funded by A16Z
In the end we’d have 12 seperate personas that could be identified as fitting our ideal client profile. Now we can identify all of the prospects that meet these characteristics using tools such as Linkedin Sales Navigator and Zoom Info. Or you could scrape together lists manually.
Whatever your approach you now have a clearly defined list of prospects that are most (or at least more) likely to buy your SaaS product.
The next article in the series will cover how to design messaging that resonates with each of these personas.