SaaS Growth FAQ’S
We strive to make WhalePages as easy as possible for users to understand. However, we know that setting up a SaaS growth campaign isn’t something that most people do every day. For this reason, we’ve created a comprehensive FAQ below. If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, please contact us.
How does it work?
WhalePages is an all-in-one growth platform for SaaS companies. We help companies scale their websites by helping them obtain more high quality links, expand their social reach, improve their content marketing efforts, engage their email subscribers and grow their brand.
We do all of this with the use of “stories” which are designed from the ground up to help you grow. To learn more about how our approach helps you grow, take a moment and watch this video:
I'm interested in SEO. What rankings have you landed?
The logic to rank websites remains the same across different niches. What changes is supply (number of sites competing for that search term) and demand (volume of searches each month).
1. Ranking Product Pages With Strong Searcher Buying Intent
Generally our goal for any project we work on (for ourselves or for clients) will be to rank pages that target our ideal customers. This means we focus on targeting keywords where there is substantial buying intent behind the search.
For example, we recently ranked a site called coinist for countless organic search terms and grew traffic to around 170,000 page views in about 4 months.
There were three main products within this web property, but the SaaS component was a big data software product in the blockchain space. We therefore worked hard to rank for organic searches relating to crypto data. For example we would target terms like “best ICO charts”. We landed main page ranking for this target keyphrase and many other similar phrases (see below):
One of the other services on the site was a service to help blockchain projects get listed on exchanges. Therefore, we targeted terms like “exchange listing service” and “crypto exchange listing service”. Here you can see we rank #1 for that search term within Google.
2. Ranking For Long Tail Keywords
We also spend a lot of time targeting long tail keywords. This is especially important for newer sites who don’t have the Domain Authority (DA) yet to rank for more competitive search terms. For example, we were working on a brand new Learning Management System (LMS) SaaS company so we targeted countless long tail terms like this:
3. Ranking Blog Content
Alternatively, we might focus on ranking blog content (non product pages with low buyer intent). This allows you to build rapport and establish your brand as a leader in your space. You often won’t end up driving a lot of sales through this type of content, but it pays off as a longer term investment in your company.
For example, at WhalePages we published a post recently to target SaaS founders who asked questions online about various topics relating to monthly MRR. For example, we created a post targeting SaaS founders who were curious to know how long it took other SaaS founders to hit certain MRR milestones. Therefore, we created a piece of content entitled “how long to reach $2000 MRR”. It took us less than 2 weeks to rank #1 for this keyword.
How long will it take to get up and running?
The short answer is about 24 hours. The long answer is below:
Growth Dashboard: Your growth dashboard can usually be setup for your within the first hour after you sign up (if you sign up during regular business hours). If you sign up outside of regular business hours, it can take up to 12 hours to setup your custom growth dashboard. Once this is setup our team gets to work familiarizing themselves with your company and your niche. This allows us to figure out where the best opportunities are you for. Our goal is to treat your company as our own, and to do this we need to spend the first day studying your company and niche.
List Building: The first day after you sign up, we begin work building a list of potential partners for your SaaS company. We look for bloggers, YouTubers, social media influencers and related business websites. We continue list building for you throughout the month. We hand select each partner and include important partner metrics like domain authority, traffic (or channel size) and Alexa rank.
Outreach: We sent our outreach emails in batches. Within your growth box there will be multiple “target types”. For example, we might target popular YouTubers, bloggers or experts within your niche.
The emails for each target type will need to be customized for the target based on what we’re asking for. During pre-outreach we plan and optimize these emails based on your niche and the leverage we have to onboard partners. Once we finalize your email templates, we can begin outreach.
We can usually begin the outreach process during the first week of your campaign. Responses usually start coming in on the first day of outreach. For larger growth plans (i.e. more than 1 growth box), we will continue to grow your list and conduct outreach in parallel. We then plan a series of follow up emails which generally go out 2 days, 5 days and 14 days after our initial outreach.
When we start to send emails, we “throttle” our outreach so that we are never sending out more than 100 emails / day. Therefore, the initial outreach emails in the sequence will have all gone out within the first 3 days after outreach begins.
Writing: Once people agree to partner with you, a writer on our team will begin the research and writing phrase. Each interview contains an intro and outro as well as about ten questions in between. The questions themselves generlally end up being around 700-800 words.
Partner Activation: It’s not enough that someone agrees to partner with your SaaS company, we need that person to take ACTION by getting them to write their responses to our questions. Getting them to take action and actually link to your SaaS company is part of our partner activation process. This is the hardest part of the process and the area we spend about 70% of our time. There is lots of back and forth, questions and negotiations.
Once our story is complete, we will upload it to your growth dashboard where you can share it with the relevant people on your team and then upload it to your own blog.
Once completed, the content generally ends up being between 2000-3000 words.
Conclusion: We focus on creating permanent and long lasting relationships with high value partners. As you can imagine, this is not an easy process. Sometimes connections can take a few days to finalize and sometimes they can take weeks. This is why, our goal is to land these connections within a 30 day period. After you sign up, we will have 30 days to hit our quotas. We’ll likely start to be able to finalize some connections by the second week of your campaign, but some partner leads will take longer to close.
Do you help distribute the content you produce?
No. We do not do any type of social media management or content distribution. It would increase the cost of our service too much. Instead, we focus 100% on content creation. However, we have put together a comprehensive 20 minute tutorial on how to distribute the content we produce for you. We have included a free downloadable template in that tutorial, which makes it easy for you to complete the task yourself, hire a VA or outsource this work to a social media management company.
Do you only work with SaaS companies?
Pretty much. We focus on SaaS companies because SaaS companies provide unique leverage for onboarding partners. We can often use an extented trial or free subscription for the partner to help incentivize them to link to your website. Working with SaaS companies allows us to easily find partners who want to promote these types of companies. However, we’re open to working with many different types of tech companies. For example, we work with theme and plugin developers, hosting companies, tech education companies and many different B2C and B2B software providers. If you’re in doubt, simply contact us and we’ll let you know if you’d be a good fit as a client.
How does pricing work?
How does this compare to paid ads? How long do results take?
Difference between paid ads and growth hacking: Please keep in mind that the rhythm of growth hacking is very different than the rhythm of paid ads.
Paid ads: You put money in and you get immediate traffic. As soon as your ad budget runs out, your traffic stops.
Growth hacking: You put money in and you need to wait until your target list is built and your partner connections are finalized. However, these connections create permanent new flows of traffic (and boost your SEO) with no additional investment required to keep the connections alive.
Similarly, with growth hacking you’ll tend to see a slight delay between input and output. This is also quite different from paid ads. With paid ads you put money in (let’s say $10) and you’ll get $10 worth of traffic in one day.
With growth hacking, we might find you a partner on an authoritative blog or with a YouTube influencer. However, the content they create around your product might take a week or a month (or even 2 months)to rank well. That said, once this content ranks it drives a constant flow of new traffic to your site every single day without any additional effort required on your end. It’s magical once these connections start to compound. This is how we’ve grown sites to hundreds of thousands of daily visitors / month. It doesn’t happen overnight, but if you stay consistent with your partner outreach, it’s just a matter of time before you 2X, 5X, 10X or 100X your growth.
What about overages?
We try to get you overages! We want to fill your content pipeline as quickly as possible. Each of our plans has a guaranteed minimum number of partners. However, we only deliver what is paid for each month. Any content overages are applied to your next month’s content calendar.
What happens if you can't find content partners for us?
Every campaign is different and there are some cases where finding partners for our clients is a challenge. Sometimes these challenges are related to a client’s industry, a busy season, a lack of content on a client’s blog, website design issues, size of a client’s niche or an assortment of other factors.
Other times, we find content partners, but for a host of reasons out of our control, partners end up submitting content to us late. Often times this is nothing more than bad luck or bad timing.
We try to avoid these occurrences by doing outreach as quickly as possible. This allows us to immediately gauge our cold email response rate and double down on outreach if we need to. Similarly, we try to get our interview questions to partners as quickly as possible. This gives them three or more weeks to get their content back to us by. We also always over-produce content in the case that content comes back late or doesn’t come back at all. If all of the content comes back, then we simply have more content in your content pipeline for subsequent months.
We put all of these strategies in place to hedge risk and speed up delivery.
Are there only monthly plans available?
Growing a successful partner and link program isn’t a one-shot activity. SaaS entrepreneurs only reap the benefits of partner programs if they invest in their programs over the long run. It’s not something you do once and then forget it. It’s something that you need to remain active on month after month. For this reason, all of our plans are monthly plans that can be cancelled at any time.
We do not have expensive retainers or long contracts. We have this policy because we work with many smaller bootstrapped companies. That said, with any type of content marketing campaign, the goal is to stay active and consistent month after month. The positive effects of content start to compound after the first few months.
Below you’ll find answers to our most frequently asked questions. If you still can’t find the answer you’re looking for after looking through the list below, then please reach out to us here.