Content marketing attracts, educates and converts customers. Learn more about our B2B SaaS content marketing tips, tricks and topics.
The B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel is an important framework for understanding and optimizing the SaaS customer journey. It’s helpful for both understanding where your audience is in the funnel and what content they’ll find valuable. The content marketing flywheel will help you take your marketing strategy a step further, boosting your understanding and emphasizing the importance of content’s role in customer retention and advocacy.
Build a content strategy that drives brand awareness, nurtures leads, and boosts revenue.
What is the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel?
The B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel emphasizes the cyclical process of building relationships and momentum through valuable content. The flywheel illustrates customer and prospect behavior and the continuous effects that strong content marketing can have on prospects. The B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel outlines how marketing must support the customer journey differently at each stage. The content marketing flywheel model is broken into four key elements:
The first stage in the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel is adopt. In the adopt stage, businesses focus on creating content to attract their ideal customer profiles and encourage them to engage with their brand.
You can work closely with a technical SEO specialist or use other content marketing tools to improve your rankings and drive organic traffic using keyword research. Leveraging an SEO specialist is one of the most efficient ways to implement effective, relevant keywords into your content to help generate traffic and expand reach.
Types of content in this stage might be a blog post (one of my favorites), a video, social media content, or other types of content that potential customers may find valuable.
Types of content in the adopt stage
- A blog post or article that answers common or frequently asked questions and provides valuable insights for your audience.
- Infographics and one-pagers that help simplify complex information, statistics, or data related to your SaaS solution.
- Social media posts highlighting your experience, personality, and industry knowledge
- Videos explaining your products or services and offering tutorials or demonstrations of your SaaS product, service or solution.
Important metrics to consider in the adopt stage of the B2B SaaS marketing flywheel
- Website and organic traffic:
You should measure the number of visitors coming to your B2B SaaS website to help indicate the effectiveness of your content in attracting potential customers.
- Page views:
It’s important to track the number of views on specific content pieces to understand which topics and formats resonate the most with your target audience.
- Time on page:
Always remember to measure how long visitors spend on your content pages so you can determine levels of engagement and interest.
- Conversion rate:
You’ll want to calculate the percentage of visitors who take a desired action, such as signing up for a newsletter or downloading a resource, to measure its effectiveness.
After you’ve attracted your target audience and potential customers, the next stage is to adore them by creating engaging and valuable content while developing a strong relationship with them.
I’ve noticed that retention is key in this stage of the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel. The best way to keep customers engaged in this stage is to use personalized content and exclusive offers to show customers that your business values the relationship. After all, when your customers pay for your product or service, you want to make sure they stay as customers by holding onto them for the long term and encouraging additional purchases, add-ons, or higher-tiered services.
Types of content in the adore stage
- Personalized ‘thank you’ emails and exclusive offers, promotions, and discounts
- Online events and webinars that provide valuable and in-depth information about your business, products, or services
- Interactive content like polls and quizzes that encourage customer engagement
- Loyalty programs that reward customers for their repeat purchases or referrals
Important metrics to consider in the adore stage of the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel
- Customer retention rate:
During the adore stage, you’ll want to measure the percentage of customers who continue to use your SaaS solution over a specific period of time to indicate the effectiveness of your content in retaining customers.
- Customer churn rate:
Tracking the percentage of customers who cancel or stop using your SaaS solution is crucial. This will highlight areas that need improvement in customer satisfaction and content relevance to customer feedback.
- Repeat purchases:
Measuring the number of times customers make additional purchases or upgrades can help you determine customer satisfaction and engagement with your SaaS offering.
- Customer satisfaction surveys:
These are a great way to gather customer feedback to assess their satisfaction levels and identify areas for improvement in your content and overall customer experience.
Existing customers who are happy with your service and their experience are more likely to engage in word-of-mouth marketing. I’ve seen this happen a number of times. When customers are satisfied and happy with a product, they become raving fans and can’t help but share their excitement and experiences with their peers.
Your customers may become brand advocates as they become more engaged and enamored with your business. That's why the third stage of the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel is advocate, where businesses shift their focus to creating content that encourages their customers to share their positive customer experiences with others. This can be done with customer testimonials, social media shares, and other types of user-generated content. This word-of-mouth marketing is low-cost and sometimes basically free advertising, as your customers boast about how great your product is.
Accruing an audience of vocal fans is not only important for building your library of social proof, but increasing the number of people hearing about your solution from a trusted source such as a friend or colleague as opposed to a blog or site page. Word-of-mouth marketig is a uniquely effective channel and should be encouraged whenever possible.
Types of content in the advocate stage
- Customer case studies and testimonials that highlight the positive experiences your customers have had with your business.
- User-generated content like social media shares, reviews, or photos of customers using your products or services
- Partnerships with influencers or brand ambassadors who spread the word about your business to their followers
- Referral programs that provide incentives to customers who bring in new customers or business
Important metrics to consider in the advocate stage of the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel
- Net promoter score (NPS):
NPS measures the likelihood of customers recommending your SaaS solution to others and helps to indicate their level of advocacy and satisfaction with your B2B SaaS company.
- Social media engagement:
To measure the effectiveness of your social media efforts, you can track the number of likes, shares, and comments on your social media posts, reflecting the extent to which customers are actively endorsing and promoting your business growth brand.
- Referral conversion rate:
You should always calculate the percentage of referred leads that convert into paying customers. This will assist in demonstrating the effectiveness of your referral programs, inbound marketing, and customer advocacy efforts.
- User-generated content (UGC) engagement:
Monitoring the engagement metrics (likes, shares, and comments) on user-generated content related to your brand will showcase the impact of various tools of customer advocacy on your audience.
The last stage of the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel is activate, where you can engage in product-led growth by driving leads and referrals into the product experience. Here, you’ll want to focus on using the momentum created by engaged and loyal customers to attract even more customers. Using referral programs, influencer marketing, and other types of content, you can encourage current customers to bring in new business.
Types of content in the activate stage
- Exclusive promotions and offers that encourage customers to try your product or service or make a purchase
- Targeted ads or retargeting campaigns that use customer data to reach new customers
- Collaborating with other brands or businesses in your industry to create content that reaches a broader audience
- Thought leadership content that establishes your business as a credible authority in the industry, like whitepapers and ebooks.
Important metrics to consider in the activate stage of the B2B SaaS marketing flywheel
- Free trial sign-ups:
Measuring the number of users who sign up for a free trial of your SaaS solution will indicate the effectiveness of your content in driving initial interest and activation.
- Activation rate:
You should always calculate the percentage of users who complete key actions or milestones during their onboarding process to understand better their engagement and readiness to use your SaaS solution.
- Conversion rate to paid customers:
It’s important to track the percentage of trial users or free users who convert into paying customers. Doing this will highlight the success of your content in driving conversions and indicate areas for improvement.
- Upsell/cross-sell rate:
You’ll want to measure the percentage of your customers who upgrade to higher-tiered services or purchase additional features to indicate the effectiveness of your content in promoting upsell and cross-sell business opportunities.
Flywheel vs marketing funnel
The big difference between the flywheel and the funnel is that the funnel shows conversions as linear with the singular goal of becoming a client. Whereas, the flywheel illustrates the cyclical nature of customer engagement, showing leads to clients to happy clients bringing new leads.
You can use the marketing funnel to create content strategies that take people who have never heard of you and are looking for solutions to their problems all the way to leads who are deciding to move forward with your solution.
The flywheel can be applied as a way to understand clearly what content needs to be delivered at each moment of a lead and client’s journey. I recommend using both to make sure you’re including everyone.
Making the SaaS marketing flywheel a core component of your content strategy
The B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel is an important strategy for developing a strong GTM strategy. I’ve witnessed the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel in action, and I can say from firsthand experience that it’s a fantastic strategy for optimizing the buyer’s journey through the use of high-quality content.
By understanding and implementing the B2B SaaS content marketing flywheel, SaaS businesses can attract their target audience, engage and retain customers, encourage advocacy and word-of-mouth marketing, and drive leads and referrals for further growth. It’s a comprehensive strategy that helps companies grow and optimize the SaaS customer journey and maximize customer retention and revenue.
For more on creating valuable content for your audience, see our complete guide to B2B SaaS content marketing here.