SaaS Copywriting — What You Need to Know for 2021
SaaS applications are quickly becoming, or perhaps already are, the leading answer to solve problems, increase efficiency and improve the convenience of everyday processes at home and the workplace. From your mobile phone and laptop to your smartwatch or TV, SaaS is everywhere.
What is SaaS Copywriting?
You probably can’t name a single person who doesn’t use SaaS even if you tried, so first, we’ll start with the basics and define what SaaS copywriting is. Since Software-as-a-Service has integrated itself into our everyday lives, businesses and content writers find themselves struggling to create quality SaaS copy, which makes this an especially relevant topic for 2021, more than ever before.
SaaS copywriting is the science, process and art of selling, converting and acquiring new software users with the powerful use of persuasive words. SaaS content not only shows readers the value of your product but also draws them to initiate some call-to-action from the moment they read your text. In short, copywriters are salespeople who sell only through their use of clever wordplay.
Why is SaaS Copywriting Important for Companies?
You might be asking yourself why you can’t simply write down whatever it is you think your audience should know and call it a day. What you think readers should know versus what they want to know are nothing alike, which is one main reason why SaaS copywriting is so vital for businesses.
It is also essential to understand the difference between general SaaS content writing and SaaS copywriting. Saas content marketing strategies aim to engage or attract awareness. If that’s your goal right now, focusing on a solid content marketing strategy should be your top priority. But if you’re at the stage where you’re ready to release your MVP and make some money, you need to craft a high-quality copywriting message to convert your readers. To wrap this short and sweet, SaaS copywriting is important for companies because SaaS content engages readers while SaaS copywriting compels them to turn into a product user.
How Can SaaS Copywriting Help Companies?
The need for excellent content is no different than any of the other facets of marketing. If your current text isn’t getting you the engagement or conversions you need, then it’s time to look closely at every single word in your sales content.
Whenever businesses aim to double down with double-digit growth, they’ll look toward their sales and marketing teams to take the lead. And in that respect, the marketing team will turn to the copywriter, who may very well have one of the most critical roles in the after-development pipeline. Why? High-quality SaaS copywriting can:
- Turn barely-aware readers into prospects.
- Drive and engage more web traffic.
- Gain more email-list registrations.
- Increase user conversion rates.
- Increase organic and promotional click-through rates.
- Lower CPC and the overall cost of SEM campaigns.
- Above all, increase sales and revenue.
Why Should Companies Write SaaS Copy Differently?
Most other blogging topics and content writing topics require a descriptive writing style to explain what someone, something or someplace looks like, does or has. Try to think back to the last time you browsed the web to buy some new shoes, laptops or cars. You already knew what problems those products solved. What you were after and wanted to read about were highlight features. Copywriters knew this, so they planned their content accordingly and dived into discussing how great it looks in a cool-metallic blue colour.
However, when it comes to writing about or for SaaS audiences, the complete opposite is true. Product-oriented companies and business owners are naturally inclined to heavily emphasise visible features rather than focus on the software’s intangible benefits. This is why companies should approach the art of SaaS copywriting differently than regular blog articles and general content. Whether a software’s UI has a dark theme or not isn’t a make-it or break-it decision-maker. Tech readers simply aren’t interested in descriptions when considering the acquisition of new SaaS tools for the office.
Why is SaaS Copywriting Important for Writers?
In the UK alone, there were over 670,000 startups founded between 2018-2019 — almost 2,000 per day! So, if you’re a blogger or content writer, you’re going to miss out on a tremendous number of opportunities if you can’t effectively write SaaS copy. As long as the internet is here to stay, there’s always going to be a need for talented SaaS copywriters in one of the world’s biggest and fastest-growing industries.
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Why is Writing Copy for SaaS so Challenging for Authors?
For many tech writers, effectively explaining in as few words as possible what a SaaS product is for often seems comparable to the synopsis from Mission Impossible. You’re not alone if you find SaaS copywriting to be downright difficult. When you’re trying to sell or promote SaaS products, things get a little more tricky.
With all the other innovations and exciting things occurring in the tech industry, you would think that SaaS copywriting is simple. However, there is so much more than meets the eye. It’s no easy task to decide what to cover and what to trim, especially when you’re limited to a 500-word chunk of real estate for excellent copy on a web page or EDM marketing campaign.
Effective content marketing strategy SaaS copywriting revolves around identifying and perfectly articulating words that will answer all the ‘buts’ and ‘what ifs’ of your customers. To achieve this, you’ll need to hone your observational skills, do some factual research and grasp a keen understanding of your audience and the customer journey— a not so easy task whatsoever.
How to Create Effective SaaS Copy
There’s no doubt well-optimised copy increases engagement, attracts more leads and ultimately, will generate higher conversion rates and more revenue. Follow the steps covered in this SaaS-writing formula. You’ll gain the upper hand with intelligent copywriting explanations and messaging.
Effective tech copywriters already know where product-oriented writers struggle the most and the obstacles they frequently encounter:
- How to avoid having my website landing page copy read as a bot wrote it?
- How to minimise making numerous reiterations before my copy feels even remotely adequate?
- Why isn’t my copy producing results when it comes to initiating user actions?
You’ve likely skimmed quite a few in search of a useful, actionable guide to help you create compelling SaaS copy but came up short. Luckily, you landed here and hit the jackpot. Though there are plenty of excellent content-writing guides covering a range of topics, you’ll soon be converting more of your readers into users by following the steps and tips below.
Understand the Product and its Industry
Starting with a good understanding of the industry and the product might seem like an obvious base, but it isn’t. The tech and SaaS world isn’t something one can learn in just a few hours or even a few days. If you want to start writing effective SaaS copy, learn as much as you can about the SaaS industry and all the ins and outs of your software.
After you fully understand what and where your solution is positioned, writing great copy will be much easier. Start with a single-sentence unique selling proposition (USP) as a foundation. — it should describe what your app does and how it helps your readers. Once your USP is written up, check it against these questions:
- Does it explain what the app does?
- Does it detail how it helps your readers?/
- Does the solution address a problem your readers even care about?
Features are the Brain but Benefits are the Heart
Because you care about all of the hard work you’ve put in, you’ll undoubtedly want to start describing the great features. But the problem is that the benefits are what matter. Product features do indeed need to be known, but they aren’t known to be very attractive.
How are Features Different Than Benefits?
Software features are descriptive prices of information, often listed in bullets or fine print, like subscription pricing, allowed admin users per account, API integrations, etc. Features indeed do need to be known, but they aren’t known to be very attractive.
On the other hand, benefits are emotions or experiences your readers and users will gain through your software product. On the other hand, benefits are your readers or users’ feelings and experiences gained through your software. These are the only things SaaS readers will care about when reading your text.
Combine Useful Features with Real Benefits
When you’re getting ready to create your SaaS copy, remember to keep in mind the real benefits of your SaaS solution. Then describe your features as if they’re real benefits, not just so-called “nice-to-know” benefits. SaaS providers rarely mention anything that’s genuinely beneficial for users. Instead, they’ll often write copy like, “it’s secure and 5x faster” or “mobile-friendly and free to use”. When users aren’t initiating action, even if it’s free and 5x faster, it’s more than obvious the SaaS copy isn’t remotely good enough!
Your writing will be much more enticing than without it by explaining the benefits together with each feature. To achieve this, reverse-engineer how you would typically write about the problems of your customers. Ask yourself these questions so you can separate features from benefits, and then combine them to highlight what matters most:
- What is the main problem your SaaS solution solves?
- What was the SaaS programme initially developed to do?
- What makes your app so unique, giving it the competitive advantage it needs?
Identify Who To Target Out of 4 Billion Users
Almost 60% of the world’s 7.8-billion-person population uses the internet. Of those 4 billion internet users, about 90% gets online via mobile access. Why does this matter? Well, it’s called customer research. We’ve used these statistics to show how effective and important this step in SaaS copywriting is. Begin researching your target audience, or ask Textbroker to do it, by finding out:
- What was the problem leading to the need for the product?
- What audience did the developer have in mind while developing the SaaS app?
- Has the audience changed throughout the products lifecycle?
- Are there plans for product development that will affect who your primary customers are?
- Where will you be driving your traffic?
There are many more questions to consider, so these are just a few examples. You can never get too detailed with customer research as it’s all evergreen. For example, you might wonder why the source of traffic should matter for copywriters. Well, that’s simple — the mindset of someone who visits your site from a search engine is going to be different than those arriving via social media. The same even applies whether those same visitors clicked through organically or came via a paid retargeting or CPC link (search engines and social channels).
Go Further Than Your Original Audience
Keep in mind how businesses operate. Rarely does someone at the company have the authority to approve purchases instantly on the spot. People who first read your email or visit your website landing page usually aren’t the same as those who will have the final word or authority to purchase it.
The real shot-callers are the project or finance managers of whoever you thought was your “real customer”. That means you’ll need to appeal not only to the audience you initially targeted, but you also need to convince all those your copy goes through before it finally reaches the decision-maker. Many of them might already have an alternative software solution in mind, too! That means your copy needs to appeal to users you didn’t think about targeting before. Those new users might be more concerned about cost savings or might not understand the meanings behind the acronyms or technical jargon (discussed later) applied in your SaaS copy.
Don’t Forget Logos — Not your ‘Company’ Logos
Like any marketing campaign — your copywriting needs to include all the elements that make up effective marketing content: ethos, pathos and logos. Writing up a vague bit of copy just isn’t going to cut it.
One of the best SaaS copywriting tips is always to use hard numbers and solid data whenever and wherever possible. Using numbers or percentages in your headline makes it much more exciting and powerful, too, like the ‘Best 10 Tips…’ Naturally, your readers will be curious and want to read more, potentially increasing your CTR (click-through rate). Here are some data types you can include:
- Product and Market Research
- Statistics and Case Studies
- Relatable and Quantifiable Facts
- Outcome Descriptions
- Performance Metrics
Avoid Excessive Technical Shop Talk
It’s no surprise that using industry terms can make you feel a sense of authority and expertise. Still, overdoing it can end up intimating or confusing your potential users. After all, the entire goal of a web page or sales funnel is to make it as easy as possible to buy or convert.
If your average intended reader needs a dictionary to understand your copywriting, you’re heading nowhere fast. Notice the mention of ‘intended’ audience with that said— if programmers or digital marketers are your targets, then keep up the technical jargon by all means.
Trim the Fat and Avoid the Obvious
Are you writing about SaaS again? Software-as-a-service is a type of service model that is centrally hosted, blah, blah, blah. We all know what SaaS is, but here’s the thing — many SaaS writers fail to remember it isn’t new anymore. If you’ve written up a paragraph on how subscription models work, you’re wasting precious time and real estate (and time) on your sales funnel or landing page. Focus instead on what truly matters — product differentiators and your app’s unique selling proposition.
Persuade and Instruct with Clever CTAs
Last but most definitely not least, subtle strategies like a call to action are often the most effective. Calls to actions are phrases or words, which, as you guessed, encourage your readers to take a specific action. It takes away the ‘thinking’ process from the equation. Instead of pondering the next step your user needs to take next, your CTA lays it out clearly and walks them straight down the journey you’ve planned out for them already.
Final Tips to Take Away
Compelling and effective SaaS copywriting is supposed to convince readers to trust you, turning them into prospects or product buyers. Keeping that in mind, the critical golden rules to take away include:
- Don’t explain anything you don’t have to — get right to the point.
- Convince, persuade and get your readers to take action.
- Aim to sell or convert rather than engage or attract awareness.
In short, focus on helping your customers use your tool and describing what it will do for them. Focus on how it can help them achieve their goals or solve a problem. If you can successfully message copy that combines the benefits with its awesome product features, you’ve got yourself a winning formula. As this isn’t an easy thing to do, you can always have us help with your SaaS copywriting to ensure “each word counts”!
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