March 25, 2019

#1 Saas Problem - Predictable Customer Acquisition

I've been seeing a lot of people here talking about this lately and since I'm in the business of solving this issue I thought I'd weigh in on the solution discussion!

Predictable CAQ comes from a foundation of these 3 things:

1. Understanding exactly who your customer is.

Knowing who you are targeting is the first critical step because it shows you what pain points you can solve, and also how motivated these people are to solve them. Which is an indication about their tendency to pay to get from where they are to their desired state.

3. An excellent product is one that solves a pain point well.

Now that you know exactly what the pain points are for that target customer, you also need to have a product that solves at least one of those pain points. And the pain point that you solve needs to be one that your customer is willing to pay to get fixed!

Make the best product out there for this pain point. Predictable CAQ needs a great product behind it that is so good that customers are obligated to share it with their friends.

Iterate. Ask your customers. Iterate. Ask. Iterate. Ask. Forever.

3. Formulating a message that resonates.

When you know who you are targeting you can begin to formulate a message that conveys your solution as THE only vehicle to get said customer's pain point solved. This is called taking a customer from their current state to their desired state.

Pro tip: Do not target a single soul outside of your target audience with this message!

4. Message distribution that pays you a return.

This is really where everyone thinks they've gone wrong, and I'm here to tell you that if you are having problems finding an ROI from ads or outreach... It's most likely that you messed up the previous steps. When you have 1, 2 & 3 right, your ideal customer should be raising their hand and running towards you.

This step involves creating an offer that is mutually beneficial for both your customer and you. And by mutually beneficial, I mean that the customer should feel like they won the lottery and you should make a 4x return on your cost to acquire them.

So if you want to be able to go pay for Ads to acquire a customer, you need to have an offer put together that factors in the fact that it's going to probably take some digits to go pay to get customers. Offering your widget for $9/month when it costs you $65 for a conversion is obviously going to take some months to get you an ROI. Maybe you should offer a year subscription with an info product or some other package deal?

And also, for the love of God, "build it and they will come" does not apply to the internet. Nobody cares about your website until you give them a reason to and smack them in the face with it.

I'm curious to hear from you all out there how you acquire customers...

What are some baller ways that you've continually been able to acquire them?

And what is your #1 recommendation to the every day Indie Hacker that is trying to do this for themselves?

#marketing #leadgeneration #sales

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    Pro tip: Do not target a single soul outside of your target audience with this message!

    Personally, I find this the most challenging. I know who my customer is, but I have difficulty reaching exactly these customers whilst minimizing marketing spend on reaching similar customers (who don't convert).

    I primarily rely on SEO and PPC ads but am pretty novice at the whole ad game. I feel like these are the only two acquisition channels which offer the level of sophistication required to specifically target niche audiences (assuming I eventually get good at it). There is cold outreach which has worked well for me, but it takes a considerable manual effort to find highly targeted leads.

    Any other channels or strategies which are good for specific targeting?

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      I always do cold outreach first to hone my message & confirm that my assumptions about what pain points I'm solving are true. It is a lot of work, but it is worth it in the end when you have a thriving customer base.

      When you do cold outreach successfully you also establish the word-of-mouth channel as well because you have a deeper connection with those customers and they want to share you to their friends. Especially if your product is really good at solving their pain points!

      Personally, I find this the most challenging. I know who my customer is, but I have difficulty reaching exactly these customers whilst minimizing marketing spend on reaching similar customers (who don't convert).

      The best thing to do here would be to write copy that disqualifies those people from clicking your ad so you don't have to pay for them.

      I'd be careful of running ads right off the bat because you need to make sure your message is right first and test it.

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        I'd be careful of running ads right off the bat because you need to make sure your message is right first and test it.

        While I have done this to a certain degree, how can I tell whether I have tested the messaging enough? I am tracking conversion rates with cold outreach and organic search, but it is hard to determine what is a "good" conversion rate. Do you just go on gut? Or something more analytical?

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          I do this through cold outreach. First step is developing your initial copy to trigger an "I'm interested" response & optimize that, then develop your followup copy to get them to do your call-to-action. Then the copy on your landing page to get them to convert or whatever is (this location greatly depends on what you want them to do, like buy your product, sign up, schedule a call, etc.).

          All of this process of trying to figure out what converts users the best helps you figure out the who, what, why, & how you need to use to convert users with your words. It's a very refining process because you are doing real world testing and iterating based on the feedback.

          If you have money to spend on ads, then you can test this same process as well, but the feedback loop is longer and you don't get to talk with real people... You just have analytics to improve on.

          After we do this process with cold outreach we then start testing ads, and every single time we've done this it's made our ad relevancy score be 7+, and convert very well.

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        The best thing to do here would be to write copy that disqualifies those people from clicking your ad so you don't have to pay for them.

        Hm... interesting idea. I hadn't though of this approach. Thanks.

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          Yeah just put a qualifier at the top that calls out the specific customer you are targeting.