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HR Tech Marketing: Strategies to Fuel Growth

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You’ve worked hard to build an innovative HR tech product with an intuitive user interface and features that outshine those of all your competitors.

There’s just one problem — how do you reach potential buyers?

You don’t just need an outstanding product to succeed in the ultra-competitive world of HR tech.

You also need a detailed marketing plan, which should include strategies for promoting your product and raising awareness of your brand in general.

Whether you’re an HR tech startup or an enterprise-level company, here are a few ways to create winning growth strategies.

Why Marketing Matters for HR Tech Brands

It doesn’t matter what type of HR tech company you are; you still want to grab the attention of would-be customers.

The problem is that countless other companies are trying to do the same thing.

Fortunately, it’s possible to differentiate yourself from your competition with a strong, inbound marketing strategy.

When you grow your audience through quality content and social media marketing, you can accomplish a few key objectives, including the following:

  • Showcasing Thought Leadership: By offering insightful commentary and solutions, you can establish your brand as an authority in the field
  • Building Trust: Even if a potential customer isn’t yet ready to make a purchase, they may come to see your company as a reliable source of information (for instance, they might find your blog useful for answering HR-related problems)
  • Educating Your Audience: By creating timely content that zeroes in on industry trends and advancements, you can position your brand as a reliable source of information

Of course, you can’t accomplish these objectives with just any marketing campaign.

Your campaign must be strategized from start to finish.

So even if your HR tech is for employee engagement or employee productivity, you still want to prioritize the same tactics.

Marketing Tactics That Help HR Tech Brands Generate Quality Leads

#1. Focus on Bottom-of-the-Funnel Topics for SEO and Content Marketing

SEOs and content marketers like to visualize the sales process as a funnel.

For instance, 1,000 people might read your business’s blog. Of those, 500 might sign up for your email marketing list, and 250 might make a purchase.

To optimize your chances of a customer making that purchase, you want a significant portion of your content to focus on bottom-of-the-funnel keywords and topics.

Why? The reason is simple: anyone searching for these sorts of topics is probably ready to make a purchase.

If they land on your site, they’re far more likely to buy something than someone who’s just trying to learn more about what HR SaaS is.

One of the best ways to target bottom-of-the-funnel traffic is to feature content comparing your brand to others.

For instance, if a user searches “[your brand] vs. [a competitor],” you know they’ve narrowed down their search to two products.

Once they choose one, they’ll be ready to buy.

And if they land on your website, you have a unique opportunity to control the narrative around your product.

Why let an external site say whatever they want about you? Use strategy as a way to control any doubts a customer may have about your product before they purchase it. 

Almost always start your content marketing strategy with bottom of the funnel topics.

2. Use PPC and Paid Social to Drive Immediate Leads

Fortunately, you don’t just have to write SEO content and wait for prospective customers to find it.

You can instantly boost traffic with pay-per-click (PPC) ads and paid social media.

Because HR software is a major investment, this tactic is more likely to result in new leads than new sales.

With the right strategy, however, you can capture the interest of potential customers, some of whom may even want to sign up for a product demo.

Both PPC and paid social might seem like large upfront investments, but keep in mind that you don’t need to use these strategies indefinitely.

The goal here is to generate immediate leads as you build a strong, interconnected marketing strategy. Once that strategy has been established, you should be able to rely on the leads it generates.

3. Use ABM to Target Your Ideal Decision-Makers

PPC advertising is like fishing with a large net — you extend your reach far and wide in hopes of connecting with at least a handful of potential leads.

Account-based marketing (ABM), on the other hand, is more like spearfishing. With this strategy, you identify a specific target and reach out to them directly.

One of the most effective ways to do this is to connect with key company decision-makers through LinkedIn.

ABM isn’t right for every type of business, but for software companies looking to secure enterprise accounts, it can be an efficient way to reach new customers.

4. Promote a Referral Program

You’ve no doubt seen “refer-a-friend” bonuses at other types of businesses.

What you might not realize is that you can employ a similar program to generate leads.This is essentially an affiliate program.

You incentivize current customers to refer new clients by offering a set amount of money per successful referral.

The advantage of a referral program is that your current clients do the marketing for you.

All you need to do is budget for referral bonuses.

5. Promote a Smaller but Free Version of Your Product

This is a great way to let potential customers familiarize themselves with your product.

If they like the free version, they can unlock more features with a paid subscription.

Grammarly is a great example.

The proofreading software company offers a limited free version for personal use.

If a user decides they want more features or need to use Grammarly across their business, they’re more likely to upgrade to the premium version than to seek out a different tech solution altogether.

6. Offer Discounted Plans for Annual Subscribers

Offering discounts as part of your HR software marketing plan is an easy way to incentivize subscribers to pay for memberships upfront.

It’s a win-win — the customer gets a great deal, and you don’t have to worry about pay-per-month subscribers canceling after a month or two.

7. Allow Users to Schedule a Demo With Your Product

Most people insist on test-driving a car before they buy it. Chances are that your potential customers feel the same way about your product.

A thorough demo lets customers try out various features and see how your product addresses their pain points.

Before you make one available, however, make sure it’s airtight.

Even if you have a winning product, a poor product demo will likely make buyers look elsewhere.

8. Define Your Brand and Keep Your Marketing Messages Consistent

Ideally, you want to define your brand before you even build a website.

Consistent messaging is critical if you want to capture and hold the interest of potential buyers.

One way to keep your messaging consistent is to establish a brand voice.

For instance, many SaaS company blogs are authoritative but written in a conversational tone. This type of brand voice is great for creating educational content for your audience without alienating them.

If you choose that approach, it’s important to keep it consistent across social media platforms, emails, and other brand communications.

You might be sending mixed signals to your audience if your blog has a professional tone but your social media posts are informal.

9. Run Email Promotions to Your Audience

It’s possible to stay connected to your audience without spamming them. One way to do this is to periodically send out email promotions.

It could be for a special discount, a free webinar, or a free trial of a new feature. Regardless, your audience will be reminded of your company, and they might just find what you’re offering to be helpful.

10. Use Digital PR to Boost Site-Wide Authority and Brand Awareness

SEO doesn’t work in a vacuum.

If you want to bolster your brand’s authority and increase awareness, you’ll want to integrate digital PR into your HR tech SEO strategy

One of the best ways to do this is to be featured in a publication that your target audience reads, like a business journal.

This way, potential buyers will see your brand as more legitimate and trustworthy.

Digital PR placements also have another major benefit: they’re an outstanding way to get backlinks, or links back to your site.

When reputable websites link to your site, search engines will see your site as more authoritative and pass PageRank, which will help your website rank better on the search engine results page (SERPs). 

11. Create Content for Top-of-the-Funnel Searches

If you’re working on generating leads, you’ll want to create content for those at the bottom of the search funnel.

When it comes to building your brand name, though, it’s best to try to reach people at every stage of the buyer’s journey.

Top-of-funnel content isn’t purely meant to generate leads and sales.

The main content marketing goal behind ToFu is to raise awareness of your brand and capture searchers at different touchpoints.

That doesn’t mean you should only choose topics with a high search volume.

Top-of-funnel content can help you build your audience, so make sure you cover the areas of focus most likely to connect you to your target audience.

You can even use your higher-level executives to create thought leadership content for you.

You can read this article to learn more about improving your HR tech content strategy.

12. Use Organic Social to Build an Audience

SEO content isn’t the only way to expand your audience.

When your brand has an organic social media presence, you’ll be able to form genuine connections with current and potential customers.

If that presence is especially strong, you might even be able to create a community surrounding your brand.

Creating a great social media presence is an art in itself, but here are some general tips to build an audience:

  • Network with micro-influencers to help promote your brand
  • Create eye-catching visual content like videos and infographics
  • Join and participate in relevant Facebook groups and communities
  • Promote blog posts and other types of relevant content on your social media pages (just don’t post your article only – turn them into carousels or infographics)
  • Make use of free social media analytics tools to see what posts or strategies are working best

Some business owners prefer an all-organic social media strategy, but there’s nothing wrong with combining paid and organic social media strategies to spread brand awareness.

13. Have Industry Leaders Promote Your Product

When it comes to marketing, endorsements work. People tend to listen to expert advice from industry leaders they trust. It’s almost a way to outsource social proof for your business.

You’ll also have access to a wider range audience this way too.

If you want your HR software to stand out, what’s better than having a respected industry expert broadcast their support for your product?

There’s no surefire way to convince an industry leader to promote you — you’ll first need to convince that particular leader that your product is worthy.

Try reaching out to selected industry leaders to start a dialogue.

You might find that one of them is willing to promote your software.

Outside of this, you’ll still want to build social proof for your product. Create case studies, gather customer testimonials, and lastly, get people to vouch for your product.

14. Always Track Conversions and Measure ROI

With any marketing activity, you’ll find that some strategies work better than others.

However, if you don’t track anything or set any KPIs, you won’t be able to measure what has a direct impact on your marketing efforts.

Always calculate your return on investment (ROI) for different marketing strategies. Tracking conversions will also show you which marketing channels are most effective and if you’re on track to meet business goals.

One specific KPI (key performance indicator) you’ll want to track is your site’s traffic-to-lead ratio.

This figure tells you the portion of your web traffic that actually turns into leads. If your traffic increases but your leads stay steady or decrease, it’s a sign that something is missing on your site.

From there, you can take a closer look and implement measures to remedy the issue.

Further down the funnel, you can also track your lead-to-customer ratio, which indicates the portion of your leads that become actual customers.

If only a small percentage of leads become customers, you’ll know you need to investigate what’s going wrong at this stage of the buyer’s journey.

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