March 14, 2024

SaaS Marketing Automation: Top 8 Tools & Tips

Reading time about 15 min

Software as a service (SaaS) is a fast-growing industry. As software companies evolve, so does their need for SaaS marketing automation

Many people assume that SaaS marketing automation is limited to email marketing. While email marketing automation software a good start, there’s so much more to it than setting up a welcome email sequence.

SaaS marketing automation covers the whole range of activities your marketing team performs. This includes generating leads and tracking campaign performance.

Automation lets SaaS companies personalize and optimize campaigns. It also helps them streamline repetitive tasks, so they can avoid getting bogged down in manual work.

This article will go over the benefits of SaaS marketing automation as well as the best tools for your SaaS business.

  1. Brevo
  2. HubSpot
  3. ActiveCampaign
  4. Slack
  5. Sprout Social
  6. Supademo
  7. Jasper
  8. Improvado

What is SaaS marketing automation?

SaaS marketing automation helps software companies streamline marketing processes and tasks. This includes lead generation, email marketing automation, and data analytics.

Ultimately, automation lets SaaS companies scale their marketing efforts. That way, you can focus on improving your product and growing your business.

Benefits of SaaS marketing automation

SaaS marketing automation has become essential to running a successful software company. Here are the main benefits.

  • Improved efficiency. SaaS marketing automation helps you streamline repetitive tasks. This boosts both your team members’ productivity and return-on-investment (ROI).
  • Enhanced customer experience. SaaS marketing automation allows you to run personalized campaigns at scale. Highly personalized messages make your company stand out and encourage brand loyalty.
  • Higher conversion rates. Send targeted follow-ups thanks to lead scoring and automated workflows. This pushes leads down the sales funnel and increases conversion rates.

Top SaaS marketing automation use cases

SaaS marketing automation covers many different areas. Here, we’ve highlighted some of the most effective use cases and tips.

1. Lead generation

Lead generation is how SaaS companies attract potential customers. They do this by offering valuable content, running PPC ads, hosting webinars, and so on. 

SaaS marketing automation makes it easier to capture lead information. From there, you can continue to nurture the relationship later on. 

Embed a lead capture form on your website, integrate it with your CRM, and watch the leads roll in. All you need is to connect your form builder and your CRM software. Or better yet, your CRM software might offer a built-in signup form builder.

Here’s how you can use SaaS marketing automation for smarter lead generation:

  • Page-level targeting: match your forms to the content people are browsing.
  • Traffic source targeting: display different lead gen forms to users coming from different channels/campaigns. 
  • Intent-based lead capture: display your forms only for users performing high-intent actions (e.g. dwelling on pricing pages or comparing features).

2. Lead nurturing

For SaaS companies, automation is key to nurturing leads throughout the customer lifecycle. Send timely follow-ups after key touch points. For example, you can automate a campaign after a lead fills out a form or attends a webinar.

Drip marketing is part of lead nurturing. Automate email sequences to educate potential customers about your SaaS product’s value. From there, address their pain points and gradually encourage them to buy.

Since SaaS often has a longer buying cycle, drip email campaigns hold a huge potential. This is thanks to automation’s ability to send personalized, timely messages.

3. Customer onboarding and retention

SaaS marketing automation is key to onboarding new customers. Once someone signs up for your services, automate a welcome email.

From there, guide customers through an onboarding email sequence. Teach customers how to get the most out of your products. Send personalized tips based on individual preferences or behavior. You can even automate emails when customers reach different milestones.

As you learn more about your customers, try automating product recommendations. That way, you’ll never miss out on a cross- or upselling opportunity.

This will help you reduce churn and keep customers excited about your brand long after they sign up. 

4. Performance tracking and analytics

Tracking campaigns and analyzing performance metrics can be time consuming. But imagine having all your data neatly organized, analyzed, and presented to you in an easy-to-read format. 

SaaS marketing automation tools help you gain valuable insights without lifting a finger. They can also be used for customer segmentation and lead scoring. You don’t have to analyze real-time data yourself to see which customers are likely to convert.

SaaS marketing automation can also help you improve the ROI of your campaigns. This includes A/B testing to see what messaging, content, and tactics resonate with your audience.

Automation also helps with lead attribution. Discover which marketing channels drive the most revenue. This will help you decide how to best spend your time and resources.

5. Multichannel customer journeys

SaaS marketing automation is the best way to deliver seamless customer experiences. This involves mapping out multichannel touchpoints to guide leads through your SaaS products. 

Imagine that a lead downloaded your ebook. If they later see a relevant ad on social media, you’ll have created a personalized experience. 

When it comes to multichannel workflows, the goal is to create a journey that feels effortless to the customer. Automation helps you send the right message at the right time — regardless of the channel.

8 best SaaS marketing automation tools

Ready to get started? Check out the top SaaS marketing automation software.

1. Brevo: best for CRM and email marketing

Brevo is an all-in-one CRM suite. That means their functionality isn’t limited to email automation. 

Effortlessly automate email and SMS campaigns with the intuitive editor. Brevo also offers automation templates for common scenarios (e.c. welcome messages, abandoned cart emails). Or, create custom automations in a few clicks.

You can also trigger order confirmations and shipping notifications. With Brevo, manage marketing and transactional emails in the same place.

Brevo's Drag & Drop automation editor to create SaaS marketing automation workflows

Create SaaS marketing automation workflows with Brevo’s Drag & Drop editor

Brevo lets you design multichannel campaigns. Run a unified strategy that spans email, social media marketing, and push notifications — all from a single platform.

Customer success story: how Hi-Rez Studios boosts customer engagement with Brevo

Video game developer Hi-Rez Studios sought to build stronger communities around their games. They chose Brevo to collect their players’ contact information and send personalized messages.

“Brevo has made it easier to engage players. Whether it’s game updates or referral campaigns, players who see the content we make with Brevo have 10% greater engagement with our games.”

Prarthana Ramesh, Marketing Specialist at Hi-Rez Studios

Brevo pricing

Brevo’s free plan offers automations for up to 2,000 contacts and 300 emails per day. You’ll also get core automation features, including dynamic content, advanced segmentation, and the automation editor.

Upgrade for higher sending limits. Paid plans start at $25/month.

2. HubSpot: best for B2B SaaS marketing automation

HubSpot offers comprehensive sales and marketing solutions. Its products are split into different “hubs,” including the Marketing Hub. The Marketing Hub includes digital marketing features, such as lead scoring, list segmentation, and a CRM.

With its in-depth offerings, HubSpot is a good choice for B2B marketing automation. However, it may be too complex for newer SaaS companies, startups, or smaller marketing teams.

Hubspot's automation editor

Create automations in HubSpot

HubSpot pricing

HubSpot’s Free Tools plan includes email marketing (2,000 email per month), 1 automated action, and list segmentation.

The Starter plan costs $15 per month per seat and covers 1,000 marketing contacts. For unlimited automations, upgrade to the Professional plan from $800/month.

Further reading: 12 HubSpot Competitors for Email Marketing and Sales CRM (2024)

3. ActiveCampaign: best for inbound marketing campaigns

ActiveCampaign offers email marketing, marketing automation, and CRM tools. Their automation builder lets automate workflows to better manage your marketing efforts.

With ActiveCampaign, you can automate follow-up sequences, contact segmentation, and more. That makes them a good choice for inbound marketing. 

However, they don’t have a transactional email server. You’ll need to sign up ActiveCampaign’s Postmark or another transactional email service. This is billed separately and may be costly for some SaaS companies.

ActiveCampaign's automation editor

Set up an automation in ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign pricing

ActiveCampaign offers a 14-day free trial. Pricing starts at $29/month.

Further reading: 9 Best ActiveCampaign Alternatives for 2024

4. Slack: best for internal workflows

Slack is a popular messaging app among SaaS companies. It removes friction, encourages teamwork, and boosts productivity.

Slack’s Workflow Builder can be a boon for marketing teams. For example, you can set up approval workflows to get stakeholders to sign off on marketing assets. All information is centralized, making it easy to monitor requests.

Slack also integrates with different business tools, including Salesforce (its parent company).

Create internal workflows in Slack

Streamline content review requests in Slack

Slack pricing

Slack’s free plan does not include the Workflow Builder. You’ll have to upgrade to a paid plan starting at $7.25/month.

Further reading: Salesforce Alternatives: 9 Out-Of-The-Box CRM Tools

5. Sprout Social: best for social media management

Sprout Social is an all-in-one social media management platform. For SaaS companies, it’s a great way to streamline their social media strategy.

Sprout Social helps you plan and schedule social media posts. It also lets you centralize and automate your social interactions.

With Sprout Social’s customer engagement tools, you can:

  • Manage all your customer conversations from a consolidated inbox.
  • Organize your incoming messages with unlimited tags, custom views, and bulk actions.
  • Set up automated workflows to prioritize messages based on sentiment.
  • Enhance your responses with AI assistance.

Social media conversation management in Sprout Social

Centralize conversation management in Sprout Social

Sprout Social pricing

Sprout Social offers a free 30-day trial. Pricing starts at $199/month.

6. Supademo: best for interactive product demos

Supademo is an interactive, AI-powered demo builder. It allows SaaS companies to create engaging product walkthroughs without any coding skills.

Self-guided demonstrations can serve as a powerful lead generation tool. By capturing user information during the demo, you can build a database of leads. Use this information to target your follow-up marketing campaigns.

Example of a product demo created with Supademo's AI-powered demo builer

Design a product demo in Supademo

Supademo pricing

Supademo’s free plan is limited to 5 Supademos and 1 Creator. You’ll need to upgrade for unlimited product demos. Paid plans start at $27/month.

7. Jasper: best for content creation and distribution

Jasper is an AI tool that helps marketing teams create marketing campaigns. Based on one brief, the tool can create marketing emails, landing pages, PPC ad copy, and case studies.

It’s a good choice for time-strapped SaaS companies who want to put their content marketing and social media outreach on autopilot.

Example of an AI-generated LinkedIn post with Jasper

Auto-generate a LinkedIn post with Jasper

Jasper pricing

Jasper has a 7-day free trial. Pricing starts at $39/month.

8. Improvado: best for automated reporting and analytics

Improvado is a reporting and analytics platform that turns your marketing data into insightful reports. On top of that, the platform offers an AI co-pilot for data analytics. 

No need to wade through charts and metrics to find what you need. Simply ask the AI assistant to learn more about your ad spend, campaign performance, and so on. That chat-like interface makes the data easy to digest.

Example of budget data analysis with Improvado

Get AI-driven insight with Improvado

Improvado pricing

Improvado offers custom pricing plans. Contact their sales team to learn more.

Further reading: Marketing Automation for Agencies: The Top 10 Tools

SaaS marketing automation best practices

Now you know about the top SaaS marketing automation platforms. Here are a few best practices to keep in mind.

1. Identify top priorities for automation

Start by making a list of repetitive tasks eating up your team’s time. Where would marketing automation save you the most time? Lead nurturing, welcome emails, and social posting are often great places to start.

2. Prepare your tech stack

Before getting started with SaaS marketing automation, study your existing tech stack. Ideally, you should have infrastructure in place before you build your first workflow.

Say you want to get started with a lead generation tool. Ask yourself: how are you going to use the lead data when you gather it? Will your CRM system integrate with your lead capture software? How will you segment your leads?

If you rush into it, you risk ending up with a tech stack that doesn’t integrate properly. You might give your team more manual work. This defeats the whole purpose of automation. 

3. Map out new automation workflows

Once you have your tech infrastructure in place, map out the new workflows you plan to automate. Consider the entire customer journey, from initial engagement to conversion and beyond.

Be sure to test your workflows before launching them. If your marketing activities include personalization, verify that the personalization variables are working. Test different scenarios. Make sure that each recipient gets the right content based on their customer data.

If your workflows involve third-party APIs, make sure that data is being exchanged correctly and seamlessly.

4. Document your automations

Document all your automations to keep your marketing strategy organized. You should outline the steps, triggers, conditions, and outcomes of each workflow. 

Most importantly, explain how the automation workflows are connected. This will help prevent unexpected disruptions when making tweaks or troubleshooting.

Regularly update your documentation as workflows evolve to keep everyone on the same page.

Get started with SaaS marketing automation software

SaaS marketing automation will not only save you precious time. It can also help you build stronger relationships with your customers. 

Looking for the best SaaS marketing automation tool? Brevo offers a range of automation features. Get automation templates for welcome emails, birthday greetings, and abandoned cart reminders. Or, build your own with the Drag & Drop automation builder.

Brevo also offers dynamic content, lead scoring, advanced segmentation, and more. Send personalized campaigns at scale — no extra effort required. Get started with Brevo for free.

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