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3 Product-Led Brainstorming Ideas That’ll Help You Drive Organic User Acquisition
Exercises to reorient your organic growth team's relationship to the product
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If you’re like other marketing leaders, what’s ultimately bothering you about your search investment is that it feels disparate from your other content and, even worse, the product itself.
To help you gain alignment that’ll unlock organic growth using SEO and a product-led mentality, here are a few mental exercises to reinvigorate your team and help you drive more users to your product.
1. Give your strategists time to brainstorm your blue oceans
This should be a fun exercise with ample time to consider how people search for your product, the potential buyer journeys, and its feature set.
The goal is to think of a few BIG ideas that go beyond the traditional content-led strategy and into a web experience that aligns the product and your users based on the way they search.
Brainstorm functionality example: Zapier initially aligns its product functionality and onboarding into thousands of optimized pages for queries like “how to connect x software to y software.”
Inventory and profile examples: Grubhub, Yelp, Eventbrite, Clutch, and Zillow know that people begin their searches in these categories for individual restaurants, restaurant types, events, and listings in specific geographic locations. They responded by creating indexable individual pages for every company, event, and property designed with the exact information users want.
Notion’s UGC templates: Notion enabled its users to create an organized, filterable database of custom templates. The ability to monetize or market them for free incentivized users to build templates while simultaneously helping new or struggling users find ways to realize the value of Notion for their own goals faster.
Remember, you don’t have to walk away from these brainstorming sessions with a definite solution to what you will build. You will, however, walk away with big ideas with significant potential upsides, trials worth testing, and a deeper focus on investigating what prospective users are doing when looking for a product like yours.
What software tool or web resource currently attracts your users and would be worth purchasing if you had the budget?
E.g. If you’re Testbox, perhaps you’d love to have G2s scaled reviews and tool comparison lists to compliment your tools functionality.
Recommended Reading: Explaining Product-Led SEO: Is It Right for Your SaaS Company?
2. Explore what people use in place of your product or alongside your product
Do you want to know why execution-focused content (like templates and spreadsheets) continues to play a pivotal role in companies' SEO strategies?
Many great SaaS products start as more robust and user-friendly versions of a free Microsoft Excel or Google Sheet that someone is currently using.
Instead of selling them your product immediately, create a branded resource of free or downloadable templates/spreadsheets that already have the functions and tables built into them users need.
This strategy is scalable, people search for these and link to them, and when they need more data integration capabilities, complex AI and filters, and increased security, they’ll be staring at your logo and URL you placed on the template.
Your users are using templates and spreadsheets for parts of their JTBD both outside your product and to better engage with your product.
For example, we use Asana for most of our project management, and a big part of uploading tasks is using their CSV spreadsheets. These make the process faster and allow us to customize to the information we want to be highlighted and tagged for each workflow.
Templates are so popular as part of product-led growth motions and SEO that when we looked at data from a randomized group of 300 PLG companies on Peersignal, we found that 30% of them reported having templates as part of their content mix.
Where and how do our users currently organize their workflows, model projections, sort data, keep plans documented, house ideas, and store business analytics?
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3. Fill out a content map that works backward from the moment a user decides to sign-up or trial your product
Product-led content that converts organically involves starting as close as possible to your product and working your way out.
If you have clear insights into their flow, lucky you.
If you’re working backward based on largely disparate pieces of qualitative and quantitative feedback from customers, sales, product, success, and the founders, below is a simple way to organize your thoughts and start prioritizing based on your bandwidth.
Put your product next to others for comparisons
Traditionally this means comparison, vs., alternatives, and category lists people search when they’re solution and product aware
This should fuel your sales teams and allow you to control the narratives and positioning surrounding you and your competitors’ products.
How to do X task or how to achieve y outcome that your product features allow people to accomplish
These often look like guides, videos, blog posts, and knowledge-base articles
As you continue to push outward, stay focused on your user’s JTBD-done topics that are tangentially related to your product. Even if people don’t follow a straight line down the funnel, it’s helpful to have a map of how people would move about in a perfect world.
For content-led strategies to be most effective as you move up the funnel, consider how you will usher organic traffic into a continued nurture experience.
If you have 1000s of blog posts that rank in search, then you have a library that likely is capable of engaging prospective users multiple times via that one channel, increasing the trials and sign-ups you’re able to generate.
If you’re currently content-limited for organic search, consider other organic channels that’ll help complement your optimized articles and can be sourced by recycling and repurposing those articles into newsletters, podcasts, whitepapers, ebooks, and social media-friendly assets.
What are the solutions that users tell us they consider meaningful for this specific product feature? (Rinse and repeat for each feature).
Bonus - What goal or task does this software integration do that makes the user experience of our product better and ultimately stickier? (Rinse and repeat for each integration).
Being product-led means being product-focused
These exercises should help you and your team unblock some of the mental hurdles that marketing teams face when you’re trying to gain traction and aiming for significant organic growth beyond a list of keywords.
Here are some additional product-led marketing resources worth exploring:
Smart people talking about SaaS marketing
Check out our recent episode of the Content that Grows podcast!
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