Affordable, yet effective SaaS public relations ideas. But does your company need a PR strategy at all?
First, you do it for your team. Not only for those you are already employed but for recruiting as well. Good PR makes potential candidates want to join your company and be part of your success.
Second, media coverage will inspire trust your potential investors. An investor will hardly be interested in funding an unknown company that no one is interested in. But the ones that are talked about are likely to draw the investor’s attention as well.
Last but not least, PR is a social proof for your future customers. And even for those who won’t become customers. You probably won’t generate many quality leads or sales from your PR campaign. But it will definitely help you build your company reputation. A degree and experience in media communication would definitely be an advantage at this point.
If you need SaaS public relations for at least these three purposes – you’ve come to the right place. We have handpicked five low-cost and effective PR tactics to promote your SaaS startup:
- Creating a press page and getting found organically
- Original research for attracting media coverage and backlinks
- Making a killer kit
- Building relations with industry experts
- HARO to earn media mentions as an industry expert
- Guest posting to get backlinks and media coverage on industry websites
- SaaS blogging for building thought leadership
- Promotional videos for company and product promotion.
Let’s get started.
1. Focus on findability
According to stats, journalists are ignoring 97% of pitches they receive. Instead, they prefer to find story ideas on Google, browsing company websites, and checking out their online newrooms/press pages. Here’s an example from WeTransfer:
This doesn’t mean you should quit sending pitches via email or social media. It simply means that you shouldn’t ignore creating a press page where you will be adding company news, share-worthy and news-worthy content that might interest the journalists.
Besides, you should also conduct a keyword research to understand what keywords are popular among journalists to increase your chances of being found organically.
2. Create a Link Worthy Study
Creating original research is a good tactic for SaaS public relations because of two reasons.
people love original studies because they help discover customer insights and trends. If your SaaS startup makes a survey about customer service preferences, many marketers, and researchers will be interested in knowing the results.
Google loves original studies just as much. Linking to scholarly studies and surveys is a common way to get higher in SERPs because Google considers it as a sign of credibility.
That’s why try making an original study. A SaaS selling custom chatbot solutions, for example, can make a study about:
- Customer perceptions of chatbots
- Chatbot business benefits
- Chatbot techniques that drive sales.
Get some inspiration for original studies by visiting known publications like Juniper Research, PwC, and Accenture (or reputable sources of research in your industry).
This PwC research on customer experience is a good example. After surveying thousands of customers, the researchers have found numerous insights into their buying behavior and brand loyalty indicators.
Credit: PwC, “The Future of CX”
Thousands of people checked out this valuable piece of research. In fact, the page has collected 3,100 backlinks.
This means that 3,100 sites have links to this specific page.
To Google, this is a sure-fire signal of source credibility and trustworthiness, so the page will rank very high in search results. More traffic equals more views, publicity, and potential clients visiting your site.
Try doing original research for PR, too. It doesn’t have to be something big–doing an online customer survey might be enough at the beginning.
3. Make a killer media kit
Not only journalists but people generally don’t like receiving long emails. Conciseness is key. However, as a company you want to look professional and credible from the first email and want to save your and the journalist’s time. A perfect answer is to add a media kit to your email in a pdf version.
It should contain all the essential info about your company, team, past media appearances, etc.
Download 9-Point Checklist To Make a Killer SAAS Media Kit for free not to miss an important section and increase your chances of getting covered.
4. Build relations with industry experts and other partners
Building relations with industry experts, other company founders, executives, and marketers is the ideal way to get in front of new audiences.
You can launch a podcast and invite niche experts as guests. They will be more than happy to get a similar invitation and will help you promote the episode they are featured in.
Other ways of partnership include co-creating content with other companies. From webinars to eBooks, you should create something that interests both your and your partner company’s audience.
5. Do HARO [Help a Reporter Out]
HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, is an online service that connects experts with knowledge sharers. You can get some publicity by sharing your expertise–others will publish it on their websites for free.
HARO works like this.
You visit HARO website, sign up to receive email inquiries as a source.
Next, the platform will give you a selection of topics: “ecommerce,” “marketing,” etc. – choose the ones where you have the most expertise.
After signing up, HARO will send you emails with topics for you to cover.
For example, this one contains a bunch of media coverage opportunities, including one SaaS topic.
7. Write Guest Posts
Backlinks are the holy grail of digital marketing and PR.
If a website gets links from others, Google will treat that website as reputable and trustworthy. This means higher search results and more marketing exposure.
Guest posting–writing guest articles for other websites–is the best way to get backlinks and build a reputation. It’s a perfect PR strategy for your SaaS startup because it doesn’t require a huge marketing strategy.
Here’s how you can do guest posting.
The first step–Find guest posting opportunities
Search Google for “Write for + SaaS.”
This request will return a list of websites that accept guest posts. It might look like something like this.
Each website is a potential source of media coverage.
Visit some websites and see what kind of guest posts they’re looking for. The best options are those accepting posts about topics you have expertise in.
The second step–Pick a site for the first publication
Choose a few websites for potential guest post submission.
Carefully check the guidelines for guest articles. Some require certain optimization like keyword research and links to other reputable resources. Keep that in mind.
Follow those submission guidelines–for example, some sites recommend sending an article pitch before writing the entire piece.
The third step–
When your piece gets accepted, you can start writing.
The main goal is to share your expertise, obviously, which means you can mention your company and services in a non-promotional way.
Besides, you’ll get mentioned in the author’s bio. It’s a small section where the site will mention you and your company–another opportunity to promote your SaaS startup.
The author bio looks like this (Courtesy: Incredo):
Publishing guest posts regularly:
- Gives backlinks to your website
- Promotes your company as a reputable source of expertise and information
- Creates additional sales opportunities.
And one last thing: choose a nice photo of yourself for the author bio. The leader of a rising star company should look the part.
8. Write a SaaS Blog
A blog on your website is a PR tool.
Blog content can:
- Drive traffic to your landing pages
- Improve Google rankings
- Introduce potential clients to your brand and expertise.
All of this–at minimum cost for your startup.
“You can have someone from your team writing blog posts–they’re the best people to share your company’s expertise,” says Bridgette Hernandez, a digital marketing writer from TopEssayWriting. ”But make sure to use an external editor to polish every post.”
Let’s take a look at Slack’s blog. The company isn’t exactly a startup (by the way, Salesforce just bought it for $27.7 billion), but it shows how SaaS blogging should be done.
Besides posts establishing thought leadership of the company, the blog also has a “Talk to Sales” button to contact the sales department directly.
Credit: Slack blog
The blog at any SaaS company should follow Slack’s example to gather media attention.
If yes, here are blog content ideas to try:
- Articles recapping industry news and trends
- Tips to achieve your customers’ typical goals with your software
- Posts on your company’s news and announcements
- Case studies with your successful projects.
Even though blogging has a different style from PR press releases, that doesn’t mean that you can’t turn articles into media pitches.
If you end up writing industry news or expert roundups, for example, journalists might be interested in reading them. Try pitching this content to a journalist who covers industry news–they might give you a mention.
Pro tip: Create a newsletter and invite people to sign up for your blog.
Add a subscription form to the blog page and use a free autoresponder to send thank-you emails for signing up. Sharing the best blog posts later is an excellent opportunity for lead nurturing and extra PR.
9. Create a Promotional Video
Promotional videos are an effective way to attract media attention and promote your company. Videos are the most popular type of content, so it can help to get more exposure.
SaaS companies often showcase their products and achievements with short videos, especially on social media like LinkedIn.
Headspace, for example, promotes its app with this relatable video.
They start by empathizing with the viewers about the amount of daily stress they need to experience. Next, the Headspace app is promoted as a solution to reduce a lot of that stress with guided meditation and other resources.
The video is quite short and doesn’t overwhelm the viewers with imagery and promotional messages. It focuses on showing the benefits for customers with the app’s features, which is the best bet for SaaS videos.
The best types of video marketing to try:
- Educational videos – Show your customers how to resolve an issue with your software with a step-by-step educational video
- Product promotion videos – Animated promo videos are effective for explaining how your product works and why it’s best than those of competitors
- Product demo videos – Explain how your typical customer can benefit from using your app
- Customer testimonials – Videos featuring stories of your satisfied customers can help build trust and increase the confidence of customers to try your company for their needs.
Make sure you plan your videos as a part of your content marketing strategy. Blog posts and videos should support each other by expanding on each other’s topics.
For example, a blog post about a specific customer benefit can support a product promo video with a quick mention of that benefit.
PR Strategy for SaaS Startups: Final Thoughts
You don’t need a multi-million budget to do some serious PR as a SaaS startup. With these five tactics, you can get mentioned in the media, build links to your websites, and develop a reputation as a thought leader in your niche.
Make sure to share your content on all channels available to you: social media, content sharing websites, PR outlets, news websites, etc. Each can score potential clients for you.
TO Make a Killer
SAAS Media Kit