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How does building an audience help your SaaS?

We discuss how you can build an audience for your SaaS growth, its benefits, and how useful and practical building an audience is for SaaS founders.

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Note: SaaSwrites is a curated growth marketing hub and resource built to help SaaS founders grow their products. We sincerely thank all our experts for their constant value addition to this world.
Updated on: 01/04/2022

How does building a social media audience help your SaaS?

A lot of advice recently is to build an audience before you even build a product. While this is a great way to find new ideas for building a SaaS product, it can also help you validate a lot of different factors that go into building a SaaS.
SaaS Owners: You want an interesting marketing strategy? Build an audience before building your product. ~ Mat De Souza

Audience building for SaaS will help you validate:

  • If you have a GOOD market
  • If your target market actually has a painful problem
  • If your solution solves a problem for a lot of people

Building an audience will also help you have a pre-existing market to successfully launch when you are ready.

With an existing audience, you will:
  • Find a group of target audience that trusts you
  • A set of beta users to test
  • Your first initial paying customers
How I came up with my Twitter SaaS idea: - Started building an audience - Pay attention to recurrent painful problems - Use my advantages (dev/design) to build a solution This applies to everything else, not just Twitter. Think: run a restaurant, do marketing, buy a house, etc. ~ Tony Dinh

However, know that audience building is not a necessity to grow your SaaS:

There are many ways for you to market and promote your SaaS. With a solid initial research, you can still do away with a relatively smaller audience and continue building your SaaS.
All you need to do is perform thorough market research before investing time and resources on building a SaaS.
An audience follows you because they want to learn or be entertained. SaaS customers buy your software because they have a problem to solve. The two don't naturally overlap (sometimes they do, but this is not a given). ~ Farez

What social media accounts can work for your SaaS?

Growth Tactics gives proven tactics to gain followers on every platform. Theyve helped 500+ people & brands grow an audience. You only need to execute one channel really well:
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1. How to grow your SaaS audience with Twitter

Twitter is Ideal for tech SaaS products
Why is Twitter good?
Tweets with a high Retweet-to-Impression ratio are boosted by Twitter's algorithm. This is the most effective way to reach new audiences. Optimize your tweets for Re-tweets.
People retweet to:
1. Save/bookmark for later
2. Signal their side in a debate
So:
  • Find unspoken truth
  • Choose a side
  • State counterintuitive facts
  • Be concise, witty, novel
Also, clearly explain in your bio why someone should follow you like @amandanat/@SahilBloom
Most common Twitter mistakes
  • Tagging large accounts, fishing for retweets
Instead, message other creators and cross-promote each other strategically
  • Posting about too many topics
When starting, stick to a single topic. Build a reputation & momentum before going wide

2. How to grow your SaaS audience with YouTube

Growth on YouTube comes when the algorithm shows your video to new audiences. To increase the likelihood of your video being promoted, optimize these 3 areas:
  1. Thumbnails: Ask your audience on Twitter or IG to vote for their favorite.
  1. Retention: First 15 secs of your video should say what the viewer is going to see & why they should watch till the end.
  1. Session length: Test creating a multi-part video series that spans a specific topic.
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Most common YouTube mistakes
  • Starting too niche
Start with topics proven on YT (health, business, tech, etc.) and create an angle unique to you
  • Investing a lot of $ into gear
Test, then invest.
Get started with a phone camera and iMovie. Make 30 videos before upgrading.

3. How to grow your SaaS audience with LinkedIn

To grow on LinkedIn, post content from a personal profile (business profile reach is poor)
  • Leave thoughtful comments on posts of popular accounts in your niche
  • Add people who engage with you to increase second-order connections
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Most common LinkedIn mistakes
  • Spamming out your company's blog posts
Instead, pull out the most interesting bits and add a unique take
  • Links in the body of your post
Keep people on page and engaging with the post
Workaround: Comment on your own post with the link.

4. How to grow your SaaS audience with Instagram

Absorb followers from large accounts with a similar audience (for example. same aesthetic, topic).
Like and comment on their followers' posts.
Tip: Look for accounts with a high Engagement: Followers ratio on the last 10 posts.
This proves their followers are real.
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Most common Instagram mistakes
  • A messy profile feed
Maintain an aesthetic on your feed to encourage follows. Share other content as stories
  • Content-focused only on status or looks
Teach your followers something new.
You'll attract a loyal audience

5. How to grow your SaaS audience with Pinterest

Make your images and descriptions clear so that humans and the algorithm understands what you are saying.
  • Organize your boards into specific themes (For example, room type, event, activity)
  • Start with 1-3 boards until each has 300+ pins
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Most common Pinterest mistakes
  • Boards aren't focused
Pinterest users use the platform to research and get inspired. Make your boards useful for a specific topic
  • Too much self-promotion
Aim for ~10 Pins to 1 Promotion to your websiteβ€”provide value before pitching

6. How to grow your SaaS audience with TikTok

When you have a post that performs well, replicate the format and turn it into a recurring series.
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Read:
Pin playlists to your profile
  • Duet with others and use audiences-relevant hashtags
  • Work towards a style that's unique to your profile
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Most common TikTok mistakes
  • Post and Ghost
Signal to the algorithm that you're a reputable creator.
Reply to early comments and post consistently.
  • Not building an email list
The algorithm is volatile. Establish a direct line of communication with your biggest fans
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Read:

11 tips for SaaS founders on audience building

What do you need to do to build your audience on social media?
Regardless of what platform you choose:
  • Building a personal brand is more human than building a company brand
  • Focus on growing one platform at the start
  • Experiment, then iterate
  • Stay consistent with publishing valuable content
  • Strive to increase the quality of each post
  • Be consistent
  • Show genuine interest in your followers
In SaaS, this is known as "the forever transaction" β€” once you have a paying customer, it's easier to retain them than to find a customer to replace them. Why? Because relationships deepen over time. Building an audience is the same. Take care of those who're already there. ~ Arvid Kahl
  • Establish an off-platform line of communication ASAP
  • Create an owned media channel like email
  • Find ways to repurpose and distribute content
  • Keep it fun for yourself :)

Conclusion: Should you as a maker or SaaS founder focus on audience building?

Audience building is surely a part of SaaS marketing you as a founder or maker should focus on. Audience building is a start to building a SaaS community and gives you authoritative leverage in the industry. However, it’s a good-to-have BUT not a must for SaaS founders. It surely helps in a lot of ways, but do not invest all your time into audience building. It’s a great by-product to have along with getting your real SaaS customers.
Instead of focusing on building an audience, focus on learning. Pick a group of people, help them regularly, and along the way, learn about the problems they all have in common. Then build something to solve that problem. ~ Farez
You could naturally build an audience this way too. ;)

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19+ expert tips to grow your SaaS with Influencer Marketing?
How to grow your SaaS with TikTok? (2022)