A few years ago, the only go-to-market strategy for software providers was relying on field sales. This approach is still valid for many more complex software solutions that target the enterprise market.
But the majority of SaaS businesses are becoming product-led companies.
This means that the product itself becomes a) the key competitive advantage and b) the distribution channel for your go-to-market strategy.
Basically, instead of relying on marketing or sales to target executives and other decision makers, product-led SaaS businesses target and engage end-users who become internal champions within an organization.
Nowadays, end-users are well-informed and can compare and test multiple solutions. The buying decision happens in the product, not outside of the product.
Barriers to entry need to be extremely low, and users need to be guided step-by-step to results and success. Time to value, engagement, and usage become the most important factors that differentiate winners from losers.
As David Barrett (CEO at Expensify) mentions, “Our users outnumber the buyers 100:1. They are the ones with the power.”
The mantra in the product led-era is engage, convert, retain!
To achieve this goal, your product and your organization must be aligned with the new customer-centric mentality that characterizes successful operations in the product-led era.
Are you on the right track when it comes to creating such an alignment?
Go through our checklist to find out!
Users have easy access to your solution and can test it right away
On top of a free trial you also offer a free version of your product
Your free version has limited access to core features
Your free version is a fully-fledged version of your application with just some limits in terms of number of actions, users, resources, or support options
Your upsell proposition is clear and inviting
You have a clear upsell strategy in place that leads to revenue while providing added value to your customers
You have in-product reminders that can convert free accounts into paying accounts
You also have a solid email strategy in place to remind users of the value that your paid version provides
You're developing your product with the end-user in mind: a great UX is your top priority
Security, user permissions, and compliance are the top priorities that guide your roadmap
You implemented NPS and CSat surveys in your product
Your website and landing pages are designed to communicate clear benefits for the end-user instead of trying to convince decision-makers to introduce your solution in their company
Your product team is the focus of your budget strategy (is taken into account first when allocation budget, is the starting point of your financial strategy)
You have a flawless feedback process in place among sales, customer success, and product when it comes to feature requests
Your product roadmap is flexible and often influenced by feature requests and customer surveys despite your product team having a long-term vision in mind
You constantly monitor product usage, and user engagement
Your company has a system to centralize, visualize, analyze, and prioritize all customer requests and customer support activities
Your company has functional units that can autonomously work with agile processes
Your company has a VOC program that also takes into account social listening and sentiment analysis
You encourage exploration and product usage with gamification
You rely on external companies to acquire data about customer persona's needs and requirements
You’ve implemented data analytics solutions such as Amplitude, Mixpanel, Segment, or similar
You customer success team constantly monitors "at risk" accounts and intervenes proactively to prevent churn
You decentralize decision making and empower units that are closest to the customer to make product decisions
You product team’s goals are directly connected to your business objectives and outcome
You promote initiatives that unify the entire team’s efforts around achieving a specific objective before moving on to another
Your entire organization has access to the product roadmap and can add suggestions/ideas based on the data they collect
There are no barriers between users and your product. You allow users to immediately interact with your product without any delays (FAQs, Video Tutorials...) and uncertainty (from zero to hero in 0 seconds)
You’ve implemented user onboarding automation and guidance (Userlane) to reduce time to value, transform every user into a power user from the get-go, and increase in-product engagement
You make sure it is easy for end-users to switch to your solution without complicated operations that require external support
Being customer obsessed is one of your key company values
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