SaaS Marketing Intelligence
One of the most critical aspects of a SaaS company’s ability to stay ahead of the competition is a comprehensive understanding of its competitors, the state of the industry, and the quickly changing landscapes. With this kind of data, SaaS marketers can evaluate a company’s tactics and optimize future campaigns based on their insights and those from across the entire industry.
SaaS marketing intelligence, commonly known as digital marketing intelligence, is the term used to describe the process of gathering and analyzing this kind of data. Let’s take a deeper look at marketing intelligence, how it affects SaaS, and why it’s essential to a holistic SaaS marketing strategy.
Here is a summary of what we’ll be covering:
- SaaS marketing intelligence definition and examples
- What makes SaaS marketing intelligence important
- What are the types of marketing intelligence
- What marketers can do with insights from marketing intelligence
What is Marketing Intelligence?
Let’s first talk about what marketing intelligence is. The data relevant to a company’s overall market constitutes marketing intelligence—it includes gathering data on industry and customer trends, as well as competitor and customer monitoring. Once market intelligence data is collected, it can be analyzed to accurately and efficiently guide the decision-making process of campaigns and marketing strategies.
Marketing intelligence is important for SaaS companies because it helps them take a more customer- or persona-centric approach to their acquisition strategies. Collecting market intelligence helps a SaaS company know more about their most valuable prospects’ needs and wants–along with who these prospects are and what they look for in a product. Additionally, it helps a company figure out their standing and visibility in the overall marketplace, which can influence what awareness and outreach tactics are needed and what messaging should be used to move the needle.
What is Market Intelligence Used For?
Overall, marketing intelligence is used to assist many different marketing functions. Still, at a high level, it can be used to inform decision-making regarding a company’s position to competitors, service, and consumer trends or behaviors.
Here at Statwax, we take a data-first and audience-first approach to digital strategies. Our goal for SaaS clients is to help produce leads or prospects that are likely to become the most valuable customers.
In order to do this, we have to use marketing intelligence to guide digital marketing decisions. Most of the time, clients are sitting on a trove of this data already—they just need the key of intelligence solutions to unlock it. That’s where Statwax comes in. We start by looking at everything a client has already collected, then we work to find the stories it can tell us—who the past customers were, their shared behavioral trends, the competitive landscape, market-specific data points, etc. This helps guide audience creation, ad copy, channel mix, and more before any ad spends even takes place.
What is Important About Market Intelligence?
SaaS is fast-moving and highly competitive. Marketing intelligence acts as the guiding light for a marketing teams’ decisions. By collecting and analyzing contextual data about SaaS industry trends and the target customer’s behaviors, marketers gain a holistic understanding of what is and isn’t working with a given campaign or strategy. Not only can this give businesses a critical advantage over competitors, but it can educate them about their target audience and evaluate insights into their services.
SaaS companies often speak to prospective buyers who are doing heavy research amid a lot of digital noise, making big business decisions and often considering several software offerings that are all very similar. Market intelligence can better refine a marketing approach for a SaaS company to act more efficiently and more agile with their efforts. Otherwise, a lot of wasted time and funds can go into marketing to the wrong audiences in the wrong markets.
Marketing intelligence can also be applied to future goals. Setting clear, calculated goals before launching a marketing campaign using marketing intelligence efforts can boost the efficiency and scope of the campaign. Clearly defining the role you want this information to play makes it easier to identify the right data to pull across the media channels.
When diving into marketing intelligence, it’s important to determine the key performance indicators (KPIs) to allow teams to illustrate whether or not their efforts are progressing toward their defined goals.
- Quantitative KPIs: Quantitative KPIs are easiest to determine since they are directly measured. They analyze items like total revenue from competitors or the number of services or subscriptions sold.
- Qualitative KPIs: Qualitative KPIs are more difficult to measure; however, they provide teams with a more cohesive view of marketing and business strategies. Marketers can leverage indicators like customer surveys, assessments, quizzes, and forms to gain these insights.
What are the Types of Market Intelligence?
Marketers use many different methodologies to derive actionable marketing intelligence. Here are a few sources of marketing intelligence that marketing teams use to gain a better understanding of the market they are attempting to sell to:
Sales Development Rep/Business Development Team
A sales development rep (SDR) or Business Development team analyzes the conversations a sales team is having with prospects. Target audiences will typically voice their key pain points and needs to sales teams. By analyzing these conversations, markers can be use this information to better understand the market and customer and tailor efforts accordingly. This is perhaps one of the best places for a SaaS company to collect true market intelligence information.
First-party digital data
A SaaS company’s first party data can also be analyzed as marketing intelligence. Data stories can be buried within a company’s website analytics and CRM data. These sources can tell markets what chhorts are performing and why, along with what content is resonating with the audiences. First-party digital data often answer questions in the same way a form or survey can.
Field trials are opportunities for brands to test the waters with different variables around their services or branding by allowing a marketing team to experiment with new initiatives while minimizing waste in advertising.
For instance, a specific service may be tested in select regions or industries to see how it sells, or a new brand messaging may be applied to a particular geographic area. If these initiatives perform well on a small scale, they may be rolled out to a larger market or audience.
Focus groups involve hand-selecting a group of individuals interested in a service to create a sample size of a brand’s target market. A moderator asks each participant a series of questions to encourage further discussion among the group. This allows marketers to gain insight into the deeper options of their audience; it also allows them to make more informed, nuanced decisions about their future campaigns.
Questionnaires are other ways for marketers to reach a larger audience. Questionnaires allow marketers to determine both qualitative and quantitative insights about their customers. Questionnaires can be conducted both online and offline.
Forms are how markets learn more about their target audience’s specific needs and information. These are usually related to demographics. A researcher can conduct forms to gain more insights on objective data versus a customer’s general feedback or option.
Email surveys are cost-effective ways to reach a large audience. These kinds of surveys used to be sent by mail, but the shift toward technology in recent years has made these methods more fruitful by getting more users engaged with the survey.
Polls are similar to surveys or questionnaires, but they vary slightly because they typically focus on one specific question. Unlike open-ended questions that may be incorporated in other methodologies, polls can be answered quickly and easily. They usually have a higher response rate.
What is Included in Market Intelligence?
Marketing intelligence provides organizations with distinct opportunities to accurately steer through the complexities of the market landscape that are unique to the organization. When completed correctly, four insights help marketing teams formulate successful strategies and decisions. These include:
1 . Competitive Advantage
When marketing intelligence is done successfully, data can be collected from competitors to distill insights that can be used to effectively develop business strategies or pivot existing strategies. By developing and understanding of the competitive advantage brands can better align marketing efforts to shift service and messages towards their ideal target audience
2. Service Intelligence
Service intelligence is about taking a deep dive into the brand’s services and how they stack up against the competition. After collecting information by speaking or polling consumers, brands can better understand the unique differentiators and competitive advantages of their services. From there, teams can better align the service’s messaging to the target market’s interests and problems, driving deeper conversations.
3. Marketing Understanding
After collecting information around examining the marketplaces populated by customers or prospects, marketing teams can understand these areas where the target market is most active. It can help them identify the right media mix, touchpoints, and media channels to use, and their services fit into those elements.
4. Consumer Understanding
Customer loyalty and retention are just as important for gaining new customers. Understanding your customers can help effectively target new customers for less cost while helping boost retention rates. When considering consumer understanding, ask the following questions:
- Who are the buyers?
- Why are they buying from the brand?
- Are they satisfied with the level of service?
- Are there things that can see improvement?
- What are the challenges a market team can help customers with?
What is a Marketing Intelligence Example?
Here are a few examples of marketing intelligence.
Small startups often want to determine how they are fairing compared to other companies in the market. A small SaaS startup’s marketing team may order secondary research reports from Forrester Research. One of the most important market data components is market share, which tells a brand how much percentage of the market it controls in both dollars and units. Small business owners can also use this data to decide whether there is room for growth within the given market.
Marketing teams can also use data from market intelligence they obtain from customers that allow the team to create profiles of typical customers, characteristics, and geographics they can then use to target other non-customers. This information goes far beyond the standard name, address, and email of customers. Teams can use the target customer’s age, income, education, and what they typically spend on the service.
Get the Right Data for Your SaaS Organization
Software companies need insights from marketing intelligence to stay competitive in today’s fast-paced market. Statwax can help you get the most out of your data. The most successful SaaS marketing teams see data as an ally. At Statwax, our data-driven approach allows you to successfully scale customer growth and retention. Our predictive modeling and customer data integration processes give direct insight into what you can expect of your marketing investment.
At StatWax, we’re dedicated to helping our clients understand how to transform their marketing strategies to produce the most successful, long-term results.
In 2020, 100% of our clients hit their acquisition goals. We’re here to build a SaaS marketing strategy that lasts. Let’s get started.
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