Auntie Anne’s pretzels anyone?5 min read

December 15, 2020 4 min read


Auntie Anne’s pretzels anyone?5 min read

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Hello to everyone except those who don’t like sampling Auntie Anne’s pretzels 🙂

All jokes aside, There is something so good about those tiny little bite-sized morsels of Auntie Annie’s pretzels! When at the mall, it’s simply impossible to let go of the opportunity to sample some.

The sampling strategy just works. Tempt the tired shoppers with an irrestible offer and watch them happily spend a mini fortune!!

Did you know, A certain brand of frozen pizza at Costco experienced a 600% sales growth just by giving away few samples

Athough, just imagine for a second if Auntie Anne did not offer any samples!

The pretzels are still damn good, but the hook is missing. In the absence of a compelling offer, what’s to stop you from trying something else that is equally as good?

Why not implement the same strategy for your SaaS website?

In this hyper-competitive landscape, just like the pretzels, it really does not matter how great your product is, if your prospects do not see the value in it instantly, they move on, worst yet to your competitors.

Companies make huge investments in marketing campaigns to drive prospects to their websites . It is criminal not to help them see the value in your products instantly and increase the likelihood of a purchase.

Let us look at the following example. Given a choice, who are you more likely to engage with? Most likely the first one. That’s a no brainer. Why go through the hassle of scheduling a time when you have the choice to experience the product live.

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Real world examples

  • Cardless replaced their Call to Action (CTA) from “Request a demo” to “Watch a demo” which resulted in 139% increase in conversion rates
  • When Nectafy changed the CTA from Free trial to Free Demo, the number of demo meetings scheduled with prospects increased by 59% and the the number of people who attended the scheduled demos increased by 42%

Customer expectations

What do prospects really think when they land on your website/product/solutions page? Believe it or not, in that moment, they are actually rooting for you. When they are on your website for a few seconds, they are expecting to find solutions to their problems. And at that very moment, they are hoping your product/service will be the one to provide that. This is your opportunity to get them hooked on. A tiny morsel will suffice, but better make sure it’s a damn good one.

The Status Quo bias

In general and especially in sales and marketing context, the Status Quo Bias is an extremely powerful force that causes a lack of action on the part of the prospect. When they land on your website, it is your job to provide them with big enough “nudge” to move them from their state of inertia — aka the status quo. Unless you can provide them with a compelling value proposition to act or take the desired next step (CTA), they are guaranteed to move on.

Instant gratification

We live in a world of instant gratification. Our consideration spans are short. In this “now” economy, consumers are faced with information at every turn, on every device and with every click and they will only give you seven to eight seconds of attention at most. In other words, all you have is less than eight seconds to meet your customers expectations and nudge them over their status-quo persuading them to take the desired next action. That is a tall order. In those seven to eight seconds, you not only need to capture their imagination and tell them what they need to do but also provide them a compelling piece of evidence to make them believe.

Applying the “sampling strategy” to improve website conversion rates

A recent report published by Unbounce show SaaS website conversion rates are only 2.9%.

If you are spending millions on dollars on running marketing campaings, that unfortunately is not a good return on your investments.

The good news: There is plenty of room for improvement.

When prospects land on your website/product/solution pages for a few seconds, it is critical not to make them go through the hoops of scheduling and gated offers. Why not offer them a frictionless experience instead? Let them see the value for themselves. In this era of Product Led Growth, prospects do no like to be sold to. Let your product do the talking. Consider creating Product Led content to educate and inspire them. Be like Auntie Anne !

As a B2B SaaS founder/marketer, it is ultimately on you to instill the confidence and trust in your prospects to lower their risk barrier, provide them every possible reason to overcome their status-quo bias and hope they will reciprocate with your desired Call to Action — most likely a request for an in-person demo or a free trial offer.

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In conclusion

At the end of the day, your customers will always choose what is best for them. In this hyper competitive economy, there will always be choices. Oftentimes, more than a handful of them. If you cannot convince your prospects that your solution will solve their pain points, someone else will. When a prospect stumbles upon your website, it is up to you to put your best foot forward. It is up to you to serve them the most delicious morsel of a pretzel or whatever else you are selling. More often than not, your customers will surely bite!

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