4 Audience Targeting Ideas for SaaS Businesses

When promoting a SaaS product, your target audience is often saturated with messages from multiple competitors to try similar products. Building specific audiences to reach using retargeting or customer lists can help your brand stand out with the right strategy.

In this article, we’ll cover four audiences you can target to improve your SaaS PPC campaigns.

Qualified Leads

You may be offering potential users a downloadable resource such as a whitepaper or the chance to sign up for a demo before subscribing to the product. If you build audiences of people who have completed an action that indicates they’re potentially interested, you can target these users with more aggressive messaging to sign up for your product. Depending on your site setup and resources, you may create an audience based on “thank you” page views or a customer list from your CRM.

Depending on your sales cycle, you may take users through a funnel of multiple promotions before sending them the message to buy a subscription. For instance, retarget people who have downloaded a whitepaper to view a demo of your product, and then target those who have participated a demo with ads focused around actually signing up.

Logged-In Members

Tracking individuals who are actively logged in and using the product allows you several possibilities for targeting.

First of all, you can exclude logged-in individuals from campaigns focused on acquiring new members. Next, you can use this audience to create a lookalike audience in Facebook or a similar audience in AdWords, targeting individuals similar to those who chose to engage with the product.

For more, see our post on why you should be tagging your customers.

Free vs. Paid Members

Your product may allow users to access a free trial for a limited time before having to pay, or it may include a permanent free tier with the option to upgrade to more advanced features. If possible, isolate free members and paid members in separate audience lists. Depending on the configuration of your site, you may be able to segment these users based on URLs visited or upload custom audience lists based on their personal information. Note that you’ll need to keep lists fresh to ensure that free users are moved to a paid list after upgrading.

To reach these audiences, you can target “free” users with ads touting the benefits of upgrading to a free trial. You can also exclude the “paid” list from existing targeting to ensure paying users are not annoyed by seeing ads to sign up.

Finally, you can build lookalike audiences. Ideally, you’ll want lookalikes to be based on paying users, but depending on the size of the lists, free users may give you more volume to work with. Facebook can build lookalikes based on a relatively small list, but AdWords will need a larger list to build a similar audience.

Cancelled Members

Perhaps you’ve accumulated a number of individuals who either signed up for a free account and never paid or paid for an account and cancelled for some reason. By creating a custom audience based on these people (assuming you can pull their contact information from a database), you can target them with messaging specifically tailored to bring them back as customers. For instance, you could offer a discount or a free month of membership for those who choose to re-join.

If you haven’t yet tested these audiences in your SaaS accounts, start building them out and brainstorming messaging for each category.

We’d also love to hear from you about other audience categories you’ve found effective. Let us know if the comments below!