Blog / Growth

Content strategy when launching a new feature for your SaaS

You shouldn’t launch your SaaS once, but many times. New features are a great way to do mini-launches. Let’s go over a solid content strategy when launching a new feature.

Photo by Hello I'm Nik on Unsplash

Let’s cut right to the chase: you are not noisy enough about your new SaaS’ feature launches. Most SaaS founders only make a big splash about their product’s launch. This is a mistake. You get way more bang for your buck if you launch often. New features in your SaaS product are a great way for these mini-launches. It allows you to reach out to your customers and leads.

Shared on your socials, your network can help you spread the word. Shared in your newsletter, the recipient can quickly provide you feedback or give praise.

You do not need to go through all these (56) steps, but don’t let that nagging feeling of making too much noise hold you back on creating too much noise. Not often do your customers follow your company on all these channels, they often have a preference for one channel.

Step 0: Tell a selected group of customers #

In an ideal world you keep track of who requested a feature. This allows you to get back to them and let them know about the new feature you just released. This always creates a positive reaction. It can be a quick one/two-liner email with a link to your log in page and your good.

I’d like to add features behind a feature flag and give a handful people manual access first. This helps with gathering some feedback from customers who requested the feature. It has the added benefit of not exposing the feature to all your customers at once, potentially breaking something critical in the app.

At Spinal, we use Helptail (currently in private beta), but a simple note with their email in your todo list/board works too.

As such, this step happens before you launch the feature publicly. Depending on the scope of the feature this could be a few weeks to a few days.

Step 1: Highlight it in a changelog #

Having a changelog is a super easy way to keep all your customers up-to-date about all the new features, improvements and bugfixes in your SaaS. It also shows to leads your SaaS is continuously improving.

Creating a changelog with any static site generator should be straight-forward to set up. I suggest creating a separate markdown file for each entry. Keep entries short and to the point. If you need to expand upon any feature, you can always do so in a separate blog.

Read this or this if you need more convincing. And check out Linear’s changelog for a beautiful example of doing a changelog right.

Step 2: Dive deeper in a blog #

Depending on the feature, extending on it in a blog is a must. Here you show off certain use cases of the feature or add more details with images or videos.

A great, not often used technique, is to get feedback from your customers that already used the feature in beta and put in a quote from them.

You could create a separate “Product Updates” category so all blogs can be easily found and listed too.

Step 3: Share it on your socials #

Just as: “if you build it, they will come” doesn’t work, the same is true for the content you create. When your content is useful to people, it might get picked up by search engines, but you also need to share it wherever your audience hangs out. Be it Twitter, LinkedIn or Reddit. When done right (and sometimes with a bit of luck), this can greatly boost the reach of your content.

Depending on the network, like Twitter, re-sharing your content after a few days is easy and worth it too.

Step 4: List it in your newsletter #

Newsletter subscribers are probably the most valuable marketing asset you can have as a SaaS company. If you are not already getting the permission of your customers to email them, now is the time to ask it: on sign up, on your blog or even in-app.

It’s important to send email newsletters out regularly. Once or twice a month seems like a sweet spot for most SaaS companies.

Next to sharing news from your blog, it’s a great outlet to highlight your latest features. You can reuse parts of your changelog and blog here.

It often invites your subscribers for feedback as it’s just one click of a button away.

Bonus tip: bubble up previously launched features in a section "In Case You Missed It" or similar. The feature might've been missed previously or your reader might have forgotten about it.

Step 5: Showcase in in your app #

Sharing your new feature in your app is a sure way to let your customers know about it. You could share your latest changelog in a widget or show your latest, big feature in a modal.

When using the right frequency, tone-of-voice and visuals, customers will be looking forward to these popups (a marketer’s dream!).

Of course, depending on your app, overtaking a screen might not be the best way to share and a less obtrusive option, is a better option.

These are the 56 steps to mini-launch every new feature to your audience. Don’t be afraid to share it often and wide. Most inboxes are pretty crowded, so it usually takes a few tries to get seen by your customers. Of course blasting spam to your customers will have the opposite effect, so always make sure the content you share has real value to them.

Written by July Forand

Published: (updated: )

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