There are only four ways to win in B2B SaaS:
- By building an objectively better product
- By building a product for a narrow and specific group of people
- By having a similar product as your competition, but with a far better customer support/success (meaning bigger retention for you)
- By competing on a story and brand
Now sit down and think - how can you really win?
Can you build an objectively better product?
Perhaps - but you’ll need almost an infinite pool of resources. For example, I don’t think anyone can build a tool that’s objectively better than Mailchimp or Salesforce. It’s almost impossible.
So this is a no-go.
Can you narrow down your messaging and positioning?
Yes, you can - and this is something you should do - straight from the beginning. If you haven’t done it so far - do it now. It will make your life, sales, marketing, and every other operation 10x easier while also improving your growth.
Here’s my example of this:
Upon winter 2021, Contenthorse was just another content marketing agency for B2B SaaS - growing at a really slow pace.
So we decided to shift our messaging - and we became a content marketing agency that gives early to mid-stage B2B SaaS companies customers through content. Not traffic - but customers and money in your bank account.
We’re now ranking first for a keyword “SaaS content marketing agency” and getting 10+ high-quality leads/mo - closing around 2-3 new deals each month.
Can you have objectively better customer support and success?
Perhaps - however, getting your customers inside your product will be a challenge (if support and success are your only differentiator).
So be ready to go the extra mile and provide real success to your customers (and they’ll stick). But keep in mind that you need some other differentiator if you want to win at the user acquisition game.
And last but not the least:
Can you really compete on a story and a brand?
Besides niching down - this is the second-best advantage you can have over your crowded market.
People buy from people. Most brands these days are dull and robotic. Be human. “Personalize” your brand wherever you can - on every visual you produce, blog post or landing page.
Find what’s your unique story (even better, founder story), find your mission and vision. Communicate all of that in everything you do.
So to sum all of this up.
You will have a tough time building a product that’s objectively better than what your category leaders have. So stop wasting your time and resources on that.
The best way for you to win is to go with a combination of:
- Niching down and serving a particular user persona
- Offering perfect customer service and going an extra mile to make your users successful with your product
- Focusing on your story and brand (when you start expanding your market)
I see many brands trying to compete on pricing. Please, for God’s sake, don’t do that. It’s a recipe for disaster straight from the beginning.
Join 360+ other SaaS founders and marketers that receive actionable, 1-minute growth insights three times a week.
Subscribe to the newsletter below, or subscribe on your favorite podcasting platform:
- Spotify - https://open.spotify.com/show/1EOvCAhz1gVhICpzFf0b7q
- Apple podcasts - https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/saas-growth-school-with-ugi-djuric/id1612087520?uo=4