Even though a startup can have hundreds to thousands of free and beta users, there is no guarantee any of them pay. And realistically, you need to generate revenue, at some point. There are many ways to get out there and find your first paid users, one of the most common is Facebook ads. But, not every startup wants to rack up the bill that comes with FB ads, and quite frankly many can’t. So, here are multiple ways content will help you get paid users. And, if you can write yourself this will be a lot easier on your finances.
Be The Linchpin/ Necessity of SuccessNo matter what your product or solution offers, you want to create a piece of content that positions it as the linchpin to success. For example, if you own a CRM product, you’ll want to position your product as the solution that brought a team together, that solidified sales and made sure nothing got lost in the shuffle. Your post might talk about a realtor office in L.A. that was always dropping potential sales, with realtors who often missed important phone calls, and texts went to the wrong buyer and messed up a potential deal, other mistakes. Then you’ll explain how your tool saved the agency from their mess. You were able to get them set up on your program, with smartphone access, and a simple set up so easy a 65-year-old about-to-retire grandma could do it. After the setup, and brief training, everything was on schedule, no one got the wrong messages, realtors always had pertinent information, and the agency was able to increase sales 15% in just 2 months. Of course, you’ll want this story to be real, unfabricated, so you’ll need someone as a case study. Be sure to leverage that opportunity when it comes along. And use the case study as a blog post, the story that centers around how successful people will be with your product will receive more exposure this way. Live example; blog post for 5,000 shots a day.
Go Deep Niche For Revenue ResultsIt’s common for a content marketer to write general blog posts. They want to appeal to the mass audience, get the biggest bang for the buck, and impress the company they represent. Of course, this means appealing to a lot of people that simply aren’t part of the startup’s audience. So while viral posts reach a lot of individuals, few of them will be funneled into sales. On the other hand, deeply niche articles produce leads that are ready to buy, eager to learn more, and at the perfect stage of the buyer’s journey. As an example, a company called Processd is a SaaS platform that allows businesses to keep track of their processes, what should be done by who and when in a dashboard where they can easily be edited and used. The tool is free to set up the first few processes, so people can use it without paying unless they become a heavy user. How can Processd get paid users? By targeting small niches of companies who need this software. Small startups that need to keep track of their employee onboarding, teams that have high turnover and want to jump the learning curve, or teams that have a highly specific compliance process such as government, security, or even HR teams. By drilling down, Processd could write about:
- employee onboarding for HR teams
- safety clearance processes
- technology failure processes for tech companies
Stay In Touch With Potential CustomersEvery piece of content stands on its own as an opportunity to make an impression or get attention for your company. When you write a blog post, or a new email you have something to share, a way to reach out and say “Hey, I thought of you, hope you find this useful.” For this reason, using content as a means of staying in touch will help you generate paid users. Think of tools like Craigslist, Facebook, Remember the Milk, these are all products that just about anyone uses, meaning millions of people are your target market. By staying in touch through email, you will be front of mind when the need for your product arises. You’ll need to stay relevant in the messages you do send. Emails have to provide value. You can do this by sharing articles you find online- curation, but a lot of companies do this. What you want to do is find something very specific and segment your list accordingly. Do people like What you want to do is find something very specific and segment your list accordingly. Do people like humorous content? Do they want tips on parenting? How about life hacks? Whatever it is, it has to be interesting.
Show Massive Value & Results Anyone Can AchieveIf you guaranteed results of $10,000 for each $1 invested into using your product how many people would sign up? EVERYONE! Now just make the promise to the right people who can achieve these results. This does mean you have to get specific about who you are helping but don’t go running scared at that idea. It’s not difficult, you can easily send people to different landing pages based on what they do, but you should have headlines and benefits that motivate people to take action based on their needs. Let’s say you sell a lot of contracts to realtors and they are almost a third of your users. You want to make sure your site talks to them, but you are also nervous that you’ll scare others away. However, you also know that you help realtors increase their sales by 33% within the first two months. Guess what? That’s impressive to everyone, not just realtors. Now you have a better headline.
Get User Generated Content Will Increase RevenueNow it’s time to get the help of the paid users you already have. You want to hear their stories of success. We aren’t just interested in their increased revenue; people want to hear about how people use tools creatively.
- How exactly did they avoid headaches at work?
- What was the conversation they had with their boss when they were able to close more sales?