Email Marketing For SaaS: The Complete Guide For 2023

Most SaaS (Software as a Service) businesses have long and complex customer journeys. It takes time and effort to move leads down the funnel, and marketers seek ways to shorten that period to increase their revenue.

That’s where email marketing for SaaS makes an entrance. This channel can become game-changing for your SaaS company, with marketing specialists resorting to email campaigns and communications on various occasions.

This guide will shed more light on all things SaaS email marketing, including:

  • The advantages of using emails for your marketing strategy
  • The four main email categories for SaaS
  • Tips to streamline a successful email marketing strategy
  • Email examples from top brands

Let’s begin!

What Is SaaS Email Marketing?

Briefly, it’s the process of promoting your SaaS business through emails to customers and prospects to support your business growth. Considering that 4 billion people use emails daily, it’s a channel that can work miracles for your business regarding sales, brand awareness, and ROI.

Besides marketing and sales, specialists can use this platform for other valuable communications with existing and prospective clients, such as account verification or password change.

Benefits Of Email Marketing For SaaS

Before we move to the primary purpose of this guide, let’s see some of the top benefits of introducing emails to your existing marketing strategy:

email marketing for SaaS

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Increases Website Traffic

The more your target audience interacts with your website, the higher the chances of converting it. By creating top-notch email campaigns, you can direct visitors who have already shown interest in your brand to your website and nurture them with great content.

This redirect can happen through the so-called call-to-action buttons that stand out from the rest of the email text with a unique design to prompt the readers to click. As long as this action is tempting, exciting, and relevant to your subscriber’s needs, it can eventually lead to conversion.

Hence, to achieve the best possible results, optimize your website and build a consistent customer experience between those channels to avoid confusion.

Boosts Your ROI

Sustaining a positive ROI is not always a piece of cake for software businesses. However, if you succeed in nurturing prospects at the decision stage, you can ensure that your revenue will keep rising.

Emails can contribute massively to this process. Sending timely campaigns to prospects who are ready to purchase can make a huge difference. Ensure that the content you deliver is relevant to this stage, and don’t hesitate to offer some incentives.

For example, you can invite them to a webinar to demonstrate your latest features or inform them about your free trial. It’s up to you to decide what your buyer personas need the most.

Maximizes Authority In Your Industry

A consistent email outreach aims to promote and educate your audience about your service and can help you stand out from the competition. As long as your email content remains authentic, your subscribers will stand by you.

To stay ahead of the curve, it’s essential to create your resources, such as surveys, checklists, and infographics, to show customers that you’re willing to support them all the way.

Moreover, by compiling this information, you can improve your service over time and provide your customers with a potent SaaS tool.

Enables A Personalized Marketing Approach

Unlike other digital marketing tools like SEO and social media, email marketing lets you share personalized content with your customers using dedicated features, such as custom fields. For example, you can add the recipient’s name to the subject line and email introduction.

Not to mention that through email segmentation and marketing automation, you can deliver highly targeted messages to subscribers and get them to act faster. We’ll discuss it further in the SaaS email marketing strategy section.

Main Email Categories For SaaS Companies

A SaaS business has many challenges to tackle. Demystifying them will help you approach your customers the right way to achieve your goals in the long run.

Regarding email marketing, there are four main categories to consider to support your business objectives. Let’s explore them!

1. Product

In this category, we’ve included product-related newsletters that will enable your customers to digest your product and use it to thrive. They can add to your customer retention activities and even improve your SaaS product over time:

  • Updates: Inform your subscribers about feature updates and how they’ll benefit from them.
  • NPS surveys: Learn what customers believe about your product to improve your product/services.
  • Company announcements: Share your latest big news with your audience and make them feel part of your team.
  • Οnboarding: Explain your product to new users with a dedicated automated sequence – here’s an example from Moosend:

Moosend onboarding email

2. Marketing

How can your marketing team nurture people at different stages of the marketing funnel through emails and build trust and authority in your industry? Here are some examples:

  • Content newsletter: Share top-of-mind resources with subscribers, such as blog posts, whitepapers, etc.
  • Promotional emails: Inform your customers about your latest marketing activities to gain more traction – check an example from Designmodo regarding their Black Friday initiative:

example of email marketing for SaaS

3. Sales

Sometimes, you need to go the extra mile to increase conversions, especially if you offer premium plans. Here are SaaS email marketing campaigns you can plan in this case:

  • Offers: Give incentives to leads you’d like to move down the marketing funnel, e.g., gift cards, and discounts.
  • Winback campaigns: Plan re-engagement emails to motivate churned customers to purchase your service again – here’s what Asana did to make it happen:

Asana email marketing example

4. Transactional

These emails are follow-up messages meant to reassure customers and prospects that they’ve completed a specific action. Here are some examples:

  • Welcome email: The first email your customers receive when signing up for your list.
  • Confirmation email: Follow-up emails to confirm that the desired action, e.g., payment, purchase, card expiration is complete.
  • Receipts: Share the billing information with your paying customers – have a look at Rydoo’s example below:

Rydoo receipt email

How To Start A SaaS Email Marketing Strategy With Success

Ready to build an email marketing strategy for your SaaS company that will contribute to your long-term success? Now that you’ve learned the most important emails that will increase your lead generation, conversion rates, and sales, let’s move to the tricky but exciting part:

1. Set Your Goals

As mentioned in the previous section, email campaigns can serve different purposes. Hence, before creating them, it’s essential to have clear goals. This will enable you to create better campaigns to entice old and new customers. Here are some suggestions on where to focus each time:

  • Sales/Conversions
  • Brand awareness
  • Customer success/retention
  • Upsell/cross-sell

These goals may occasionally overlap but setting distinct objectives will help you track your email performance carefully. Moreover, you can set goals to improve your email marketing metrics over time, such as cleaning your email lists or tweaking your subject lines to boost your open rates.

Plus, align your email marketing goals with other promotional tactics, such as social media or content marketing, to create an omnichannel marketing experience and nurture excellent results.

omnichannel marketing description

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2. Choose Your Email Marketing Software

SaaS companies usually utilize digital solutions to manage daily operations. For instance, marketing teams choose CRM solutions like Salesforce or Hubspot to keep all customer data in one place. This data enables them to understand their buyer personas in-depth and build more detailed customer journey maps to increase conversions.

To ensure that your email outreach remains competitive, it’s vital to adopt a scalable email marketing service like Moosend or Campaign Monitor with full capabilities that will free your hands. Here are the best email features to look for:

  • Ready-made email templates and an intuitive editor
  • Email deliverability
  • Marketing automation and segmentation
  • Mobile responsiveness
  • A/B Testing
  • Flexible pricing
  • Reporting and analytics
  • Behavioral tracking

In a nutshell, search for an easy-to-use solution that will help you nail your email marketing efforts and can work in synergy with the rest of your marketing stack. If you’re in a hurry, sign up for a Moosend account and enjoy our 30-day free trial!

Try for free

3. Grow Your Email List

To start email marketing for SaaS and other eCommerce businesses, you need to get your audience’s opt-in. Avoid sending email campaigns to leads and customers who haven’t permitted you, as this may increase spam rates and gradually build a bad reputation around your brand. Plus, include an unsubscribe button for subscribers who wish to opt out.

But how can you collect your subscribers’ email addresses? Here are some methods to introduce:

  • Content upgrades: Share free resources such as case studies or whitepapers with your prospects as a bonus in exchange for their email addresses.
  • Purchases: Add an opt-in box during the purchase stage to grow your email list.
  • Landing pages: Build dynamic landing pages with outstanding CTAs.
  • Giveaways: Run a social media contest, asking for the contestants’ email addresses.
  • Signup forms: Include static or pop-up forms in your website or blog to expand your subscriptions.

Here is an example from the recruiting software Greenhouse:

Greenhouse signup form example

To maintain healthy and effective lists, cleaning them regularly and removing inactive and churning subscribers is essential. Thus, you’ll sustain a high deliverability rate while reducing your spam and bounce rates.

4. Create Different Segments

Personalized emails are among the biggest assets in an email marketer’s toolkit. They give a more personal tone to customer communications and make prospects and customers feel safer with your brand. Moreover, personalized campaigns receive higher open and click-through rates.

customer segmentation types

Apart from adding your subscriber’s name to the subject line and email intro through dedicated personalization tags, you can utilize customer segmentation. Create sub-lists called segments based on shared characteristics of your customers and prospects.

What are the most prominent segmentation criteria for SaaS businesses? Let’s see them:

  • Firmographic – e.g., company size, industry
  • Demographic – e.g., age, gender
  • Geographic – e.g., country, city
  • Technographic – e.g., Android vs. iOS user
  • Psychographic – e.g., values, interests
  • Behavioral – e.g., feature use, lifecycle stage

Some email marketing platforms give you access to a limited number of data. Therefore, you can collect information from your analytics and CRM tool to go the extra mile. Plus, you can conduct dedicated customer surveys to collect the missing data you need to nail your email marketing practices.

5. Share Interesting Email Content

To make your subscribers fond of your email campaigns, you should share meaningful and relevant content. Your storytelling and email design should be captivating, following your branding guidelines and tone of voice in a predictive way.

Everything starts with the subject line; write intriguing copy that reflects your email’s most substantial elements. Firstly, you’ll make your email stand out from multiple campaigns in your subscriber’s mailbox daily. Plus, people genuinely interested in your email campaign and more likely to convert will most likely click.

Your email copy should continue in the same tone. Write straightforward, creative, and inviting messages to make your readers love you and increase your conversion rates.

These rules apply to your email design, as well. Pick a customizable template and tweak it based on your needs. Moreover, adding beautiful visuals and relevant GIFs will enrich your reader’s experience. You can experiment with different email content types to find what appeals the most to your audience.

Here’s an interesting campaign from Atlassian that checks all the boxes:

Subject line: How to sync and collaborate with Git

email example from Atlassian

6. Build Automated Sequences

Lead-nurturing emails are key in moving your leads down the funnel and converting them. To meet your goals, you can create automated email sequences, also known as drip campaigns, to nudge your prospects within specific time intervals.

Let’s imagine that you own a recruiting software company. Someone downloads an infographic about the latest recruiting trends. You can build an automation sequence and send them two follow-up emails in the next few days. For example, the first can be about the benefits of applicant tracking systems, followed by a free trial offer for those who open the first campaign.

Below, you can find an additional automation example to nurture people that have just joined your mailing list:

drip campaign example for SaaS businesses

All in all, through email automation, you can create a consistent outreach plan to boost your lead generation and conversions at different customer journey stages.

7. Analyze Your Email Performance

To ensure that your email campaigns are fruitful and that your gains exceed your costs, you need to track some important email marketing metrics to make adjustments if needed. Let’s see them combined with some recent benchmark data:

  • Open rates – 22.7%
  • Click-through rates – 2%
  • Unsubscribes – 0.2%
  • Conversion rates
  • Bounce rates

Initially, there’ll be a trial and error-period to keep these metrics strong and steady. To hit big results, it’s essential to understand your audience s in-depth, emphasizing their pain points and habits.

Finally, pick an email marketing platform with top analytics and reporting features to keep a log of these metrics. You can also integrate it with other tools like Google Analytics to keep all your marketing data in one place.

7 Top SaaS Email Marketing Examples 

If you’re ready to step into the world of email marketing for SaaS businesses, here are some top campaign examples to get inspired:

1. Miro’s Welcome Email Campaign

Subject line: Welcome to Miro. Let’s collaborate.

welcome email for SaaS

Why it works: When someone finds your product and content interesting, they may end up subscribing to your list. For this, it’s essential to plan a welcome campaign to show them your gratitude and share a first glimpse of what you can offer them.

This example from Miro is excellent for starters. The subject line starts with a welcome note and collaboration call-to-action. The email content remains in the same tone, inviting new subscribers to learn about the product and join the community, using clever copy and high-quality images.

Overall, crafting a welcome email is a must practice as it receives high open and click-through rates based on a recent report. Ensure that it includes essential information and leaves a lasting first impression on readers.

2. Moosend Monthly Content Newsletter

Subject Line: New blog post alert 📢

Moosend monthly content newsletter

Why it works: If you want to increase authority in your niche and educate your customers on crucial topics that will help them build a better business strategy, share your content marketing resources with them regularly.

Moosend creates monthly blog digests with the latest resources and seasonal content campaigns to help customers thrive in their email marketing strategy. You can follow a similar format and share some of your proudest content accomplishments with your audience.

3. Shopify’s Onboarding Email

Subject line: Set up Marketing Operations with a guided tour of Shopify

Shopify email marketing example

Why it works: If you want to prepare new customers for success and reduce churn rates, creating an onboarding email sequence is very important. These automated emails educate new users on how to use your platform successfully to meet their goals.

This onboarding email from Shopify introduces new users to their service and offers a free course for those who want to excel in marketing operations. Moreover, it includes links that direct new users to download additional apps for an enriched user experience.

Onboarding emails are also useful for businesses that have opted for the free plan, as a successful onboarding experience may motivate them to go for more.

4. GoDaddy’s Win-back Email

Subject line: You’ve still got time to save 30%.

GoDaddy re-engagement email

Why it works: Losing loyal customers is challenging, as acquisition costs more than retention. Even though it can be normal to a certain extent, it’s worth trying to win them over again by offering incentives.

With this win-back email, GoDaddy attempts to reclaim their relapsed customers’ attention by offering a 30% promo discount. In the email footer, they’ve also added the terms and conditions for people who have questions or concerns about the offer. Overall, give them an incentive that is attractive enough to make them act fast.

5. Squarespace’s Trial Expiration Campaign

Subject line: Retention Email Design from Squarespace

trial expiration newsletter for SaaS

Why it works: If your SaaS company provides free trials to prospects, it’s essential to create a trial expiration campaign that is automatically triggered one day before it expires. Τhis will help you nudge them while they’re still warmed up.

In this Squarespace campaign, you can see that the head title informs the readers when the trial is about to expire. Moreover, the “Upgrade now” button stands out from the rest of the text to prompt readers to act fast. You can follow the same format to avoid creating noise that can distract free trial users from completing the desired action.

6. Figma New Feature Update

Subject line: Move work forward

Figma new feature email

Why it works: Want to inform your customers and qualified leads about your latest product updates? Then create a dedicated campaign emphasizing the benefits they’ll gain from each one of them.

Figma added two CTA buttons – one that would make users claim the new features fast and one for those wishing to do more research. Moreover, they added a brief description for each feature to attract people interested in them.

7. Dropbox Customer Survey Email

Subject Line: Dropbox Support: tell us how we did

Dropbox email campaign

Source

Why it works: Nobody knows your product’s assets and flaws better than your costumers. Collecting their feedback from time to time regarding different business operations is important to keep your SaaS business profitable.

To ensure that your subscribers will complete your survey, make it as concrete as Dropbox did. They asked subscribers to evaluate their service on a scale from one to five to make the process as fast as possible. Finally, they added a privacy note for people with GDPR concerns.

The Takeaways

Building an effective email marketing funnel and strategy for your SaaS business can be tricky, but the benefits will eventually pay you back. Start with smart goal-setting and continue with a SWOT analysis to keep the engine going.

Moreover, remember that creating mesmerizing email campaigns will bring you closer to your customers and prospects and help you showcase your brand to the world. At the end of the day, it’s a creative process, and your marketing team can have lots of fun creating them.

Ready to embark on the SaaS email marketing train? Sign up for a Moosend account for free and experiment with our SaaS-friendly features that will let you entice your subscribers once and for all!

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