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Lead Generation

10 Critical Lead Generation Strategies for SaaS Startups

July 28, 2021
The mantra “build it and they will come” doesn’t really work. We all want to imagine that when we finally launch our startup, a flood of signups from people that can’t wait to use our product will happen on day one. I wish this was true, but it is.

You need to be thinking about lead generation strategies for your startup before you even launch and build them into your action plan.

We’re going to show you the 10 lead generation strategies that will skyrocket your startup.

Just before we get into the good stuff, let’s just refresh ourselves on what lead generation is. In short, a lead is an individual or organization that has expressed an interest in your offering (product or service).

And, the whole SaaS lead generation strategy includes the process that can be shortened into three steps. These are:

  • Attracting
  • Engaging and
  • Converting

Let’s explore these lead gen strategies one-by-one.

Attracting phase: Your sole target in the attracting phase will be to make the people visiting your business platform or website.

You can initially attract visitors via publishing visually appealing content or some kind of lucrative inbound marketing strategy.

Engaging phase: Now, you have to engage those visitors with your website. You may do it by offering free content like an e-book or informative video, an invitation on a webinar, discount coupons, a free trial of your products, or simply signing up for your newsletter.

Converting phase: Once a person gets interested in your free resources, then you can convert them into your potential lead.

To get these free resources, they have to share their contact information via a simple form. That’s how you can contact those people who are already included in your sales funnel.

Pro tips: Try to use as few input fields as possible. You can increase the conversion rate up to 25% only by diminishing the input fields to three. (Source – HubSpot)

So, the overall idea is to offer something valuable to them for free. Thus, they might permit you to contact them (mostly through email) in the near future.

That’s it!

What are the Lead Generation Strategies for SaaS Startups? 

So, you just climbed up the impossible mountain of starting a SaaS startup. Just before you are planning to celebrate, we want to remind you of the actual challenge of a business which is: finding leads or customers. 

Now it’s time to offer you the top 10 best lead gen strategies that a SaaS startup should use in 2021 and onwards. 

saas lead generation strategies

Create A Blog 

Blogging is good especially when you are trying to create a lead generating website! In fact, 77% of users read blog posts on a regular basis. It’s an effective way to attract people and probably your best long-term inbound lead generation strategy. That’s the good news, right? 

So, what’s the ‘bad’ news here? 

Well, creating a blog is only half of your lead gen battle. You have to perform lots of other activities to convert those visitors into your lead. You know, web traffic without any lead is actually meaningless. 

You should write and update your blog often with high-quality and valuable content and do some content marketing. It will increase your presence on search engines and social media. 

When done properly, your blog will turn into a red-hot SaaS lead generation sales machine. 

Remember, you can generate 126% more leads than your competitors only by blogging. So, put a good effort into blogging, please. 

Create Webinars

Running a successful blog is good for startups. But you should do more. If you can also offer some webinars or podcasts for your visitors, it will spice up your overall SaaS lead generation strategy. 

You know 73% of sales leaders and B2B SaaS lead generation experts believe that hosting a webinar is a great way to get high-quality leads. Even 5% to 20% of webinar attendees convert into buyers. Awesome, right? 

However, you can’t taste the juicy fruits of a webinar just by hosting a random webinar. Keep the following facts in your mind while planning a webinar or podcast session. 

  • Defining buyer persona – Define your buyer persona based on the content of your webinar. 
  • Registration process – Keep the registration process as smooth as possible. 
  • Dedicated landing page – You may create a dedicated landing page for this webinar. Don’t forget to add speaker information and a few eye-catchy CTA’s into the landing page. 
  • Promoting the webinar – Promote the webinar via email marketing, paid advertising, social media, or other SaaS platforms. 
  • Supply better resources – 79% of total B2B marketer shares their personal information willingly for a webinar. So, you MUST supply something extremely valuable and useful to them. 
  • Do Q&A sessions – 92% of total webinar attendees prefer a Q&A session at the end. The host can communicate with the attendees during this session. It’s a critical part to generate promising leads. 

Keep these tips in your mind and host a successful webinar! 

Create Gated Content

Gated content is nothing but some resources which are hidden behind a contact form. Users have to provide their name, email, title, or other relevant information to access the content. 

But, there’s a huge misconception about gated content amongst the SaaS startup owners. Some marketers think that gated content reduces the possibility of generating leads. 

The reality of it is that your visitors are willing to give their personal information to you as long as you are providing something that has high perceived value. 

To be honest, it’s common human psychology. For example, most people have no issues with signing up for a demo of your product because there is a lot of potential value in the trade off. But if you use that same form on a gated content piece about “The history of selling blue t-shirts”, your conversion rate will be a lot lower because you aren’t giving them enough perceived value. 

A great gated content piece could be in the form of an eBook, discount coupons, referral marketing codes, tutorial videos, etc., just as long as they the visitor sees value in it.  

It is a win for both sides which is why 90% of B2B marketers prefer to use gated content as a good SaaS lead generation strategy. 

Use Google Adwords

Using Google Adwords for B2B lead generation is kind of tricky. Being a competitive ad platform, you have to optimize your ad in the best possible way to achieve your expected B2B SaaS marketing target. Otherwise, all of your time and money will be wasted. 

In this section, we’ll show you how to get immense success by optimizing Google Adwords. 

  • Keyword planning – It is extremely important for every SaaS business owner to research their keywords. From the landing page creation to ad publishing, you have to place relevant keywords everywhere. 

You may use Google Keyword Planner or other tools for researching your keywords. 

  • Implementing a single keyword ad group – Just like the name suggests, single keyword ad groups are groups with only one keyword in them. 

But most novice marketers prefer to add 10 to 20 keywords within a single group. But, it’s extremely difficult to optimize a bunch of keywords within a single ad copy, right? So, the equation is – 

Higher optimization = Higher relevancy = More traffic = More lead 

  • Geo-targeting – A research by Clicteq shows that geo-targeting reduces the cost per lead by 38.5% and increases the overall leads by 21.9%. 

Even though SaaS business owners target global audiences for their products, still you should apply geo-targeting. It helps to target the specific consumer group and increase the possibility of generating the qualified lead. 

You can use the Dynamic Text Insertion for geo-targeting your potential customer. 

Please leave no stone unturned while researching Google ads. A properly optimized campaign will help the startups to get leads directly to their sales funnel. 

Competitive Ads on keywords your competitors are organically ranking for

You know what, your competitors can help get new leads for you. 


Okay! But you can do it only by running ads on strategic keywords that your competitors are ranking for organically. If you aren’t able to get a top spot for a keyword, create a highly optimized ad for it. 

By analyzing your competitor’s keywords and running ads on the most important ones, your ad will show up above the organic listings for that particular keyword and give you the best chance to steal traffic and give you the best chance to bring in a quality lead. 

Focus on keywords that will have a higher conversion rate in the SaaS industry. Generally, these would be “bottom of the funnel” keywords with a high commercial intent like “best contact form tool”. But your competitors are already ranked on those keywords, right? 

You can also run an A/B test to choose the most conversational keywords. 

Offer Free Trial or Freemium Model

Who doesn’t love to use a free product? 

But, is this a good thing to do for the business owners? Well, the answer could be both yes and no. 

You know, free stuff is very hard to resist for the consumers. In a good way, it can increase your sales by up to up to 2000%! 

But there are also some bad things. If the freemium version or your free stuff isn’t good enough, it may hurt your business growth. 

Though you are providing it for free, make sure you are offering the best thing to the target audience. Only then you can generate a good amount of lead from it. 

So how to know whether your free lead magnet can bring leads or not? Well, there are some key factors to determine that. You can win a massive amount of lead by satisfying those factors. Let’s have a look at those. 

  1. The freemium model of your SaaS product aka the lead magnet must be relevant to your consumer needs. 
  1. It must be very simple to implement and use. 
  1. The product should be available to the consumers immediately after sharing their information. 
  1. The product must be built with a higher standard. 
  1. After all, it must solve at least one major problem for your clients. 

If you can ensure these facts, you can definitely get a huge number of leads by following this B2B marketing strategy. 

Create YouTube Videos 

There’s an evergreen appeal for videos among the consumers. People love to watch videos for everything. From solving their technical problems to fixing the porch swing, they love to learn it from video tutorials. 

So, you can create some YouTube videos that can demonstrate solving some real-life problems by using your SaaS solution. Your videos can reference the gated content on your site or maybe has a link to a promotional landing page. 

Don’t be a sales person, be an expert and a guide. We have referenced Ahrefs’ YouTube channel in previous articles and I think it still applies here. If you follow their model, it can be a great source for demand generation. 

The best place to start is on YouTube because they already have an audience built in. You know, the YouTube Android app is the first app that hits a massive 10 Billion download in Play Store. Impressive, isn’t it? 

Partner with other SaaS companies

If you want to skyrocket your B2B SaaS lead generation process, you have no other choice than to do it via partnership marketing. 

But you have to create a partnership deal in such a way that can benefit both of you. For example, you may offer sponsorship for their upcoming webinars, conduct some research together, or simply exchange guest blogging. 

You may also start your own conference by partnering with other established SaaS companies. You may discuss the product features and show the effectiveness of your product at that conference. 

Thus, the audience will become familiar with your SaaS app, and you’ll also get some quality leads. 

Create A Promo Video

Have you ever asked yourself why the producers release a trailer or teaser video before releasing the actual movie? 

Because it raises interest and keeps them hooked with the release date. That’s the power of a simple promo video. 

If you also want to engage more leads with your business, start creating promo videos. These promo videos help understand the value your SaaS brings in less than 60 seconds. 

Here I’ve listed a few points about how a promo video helps to generate more B2B SaaS leads. 

  1. Increases conversion rate – In the software industry, 74% of total consumers become convinced to purchase a product or service after watching videos. 
  1. Videos are intriguing – People love to watch videos by nature. It is effortless and the conversion rate is higher than other forms of content. 
  1. Search engine friendly – Search engines are more likely to feature video content on their first page. Thus, your product will become visible to a lot of people. 
  1. Increases brand awareness – If you can integrate your brand or a product on a video, it will create a huge momentum in brand awareness. 
  1. Content marketing – The social promo videos can generate 1200% more shares than both text and image-based content. So, it drastically improves the possibility of promoting your product along with generating more potential leads. 

Overall, every SaaS marketer prefers video to promote their products. It does not only help to generate leads but also makes the ideal customer acquisition process smoother. 

Perform Influencer Outreach

Social media platforms aren’t used just for virtual gatherings anymore. Nowadays, it’s becoming a one-stop solution for everything. 

From setting up trends to promoting your business, social media influencers play a vital role and have become a critical strategy in outbound lead generation. 

Being a SaaS company owner, you might approach the micro-influencer first. Compared to the bigger influencers, the micro-influencers are more connected with their fans. 

About 82% of fans are very receptive to the recommendations of their favorite micro-influencer. So, find some relevant influencers, promote your business or service, and start generating leads. 

Okey dokey, these are our 10 critical lead generation strategies for SaaS startups. Start implementing your most favorable SaaS lead generation efforts now and grow your business. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Here I’ve listed the five most commonly asked questions about SaaS lead generation. Have a look.

Question #1: What are the marketing strategies to generate leads? 

Answer: Few popular lead generation strategies are creating a blog, hosting a webinar, promoting videos, or conducting digital marketing. You may choose the best suitable one for your SaaS startup.

Question #2: How do you find B2B leads? 

Answer: B2B lead generation isn’t as challenging as it sounds. You can easily do it by following some strategies like influencer marketing, Google Ads, content marketing, or marketing automation tools. 

Question #3: What is a marketing qualified lead?

Answer: The marketing qualified lead aka MQL is the lead who becomes genuinely interested in a brand via their marketing efforts. A qualified lead is more likely to become a paying customer than the other leads.

Question #4: What information should be in a buyer persona?

Answer: A general buyer persona includes customers name, title, behavioral traits, demographic details, product preference, location, etc. It just represents the characteristics of your targeted customer base.  

Question #5: How can you get free leads?

Answer: Inbound marketing and social media platforms are the best ways to get free leads. But it comes at the expense of time. It’s better to use our lead generation strategies which can be done for free or cost you a few bucks.   

Final Words 

Are you planning to get millions of leads overnight? Sorry, it’s not happening! 

Go slow by following the proven SaaS lead generation strategy we’ve described above and grow your business. 

Choose your strategy wisely! 


Greg Tucker