B2B SaaS Marketplace Marketing Strategies to Drive Adoption and Revenue

Learn how successful integration marketers navigate technology partnerships and collaborate with marketing teams to promote B2B SaaS integration marketplace.
Written by
Elizabeth Garcia
Published on
August 7, 2023

More and more, in-app marketplaces are becoming a requirement for B2B SaaS marketing companies. The explosive growth of well-known SaaS companies like Salesforce, Shopify, Slack, Atlassian, BigCommerce, and HubSpot has occurred in large part because of the app marketplaces and integrations they offer their users. 

Whether your customers need to integrate your app with 5 or 5,000 other solutions, building a public or in-app marketplace empowers your customers to have the seamless customer experience they are now looking for.

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The Benefits of launching a B2B marketplace 

Marketing user-facing integrations via a B2B public or in-app marketplace significantly enhances  B2B SaaS businesses in several ways: 

Increased Adoption and Customer Acquisition

Marketing user-facing integrations demonstrate the value and benefits of integrating B2B SaaS products with systems or platforms that customers already use. Showcasing how the integration enhances their existing workflows and improves productivity, attracts more customers driving higher adoption rates.

Competitive Differentiation

User-facing integrations can set  B2B SaaS businesses apart from competitors by highlighting the seamless and robust integration capabilities of the product. Spotlighting integration solutions create a unique selling proposition for the business as a preferred choice for customers who prioritize integration and interoperability.

Expanded Market Reach

Marketing user-facing integrations opens doors to new market segments or industries that rely on specific integrations. Targeting customers using complementary systems or platforms allows a B2B SaaS business to expand its market reach and tap into previously untapped opportunities.

Upselling and Cross-Selling Opportunities

User-facing integrations create upselling and cross-selling opportunities — it emphasizes the value of integrating additional modules, features, or add-ons. By demonstrating to current users how  integrations further enhance the functionality and benefits of the B2B SaaS product, businesses can encourage existing customers to upgrade or expand their usage.

Partnership and Collaborative Opportunities

Marketing user-facing integrations attracts potential partnership opportunities with complementary software providers or technology platforms. Collaborating with other businesses to offer integrated solutions  benefits both parties by leveraging each other's customer bases to create mutually beneficial marketing campaigns.

Thought Leadership and Industry Recognition

B2B SaaS businesses that excel in user-facing integrations can establish thought leadership and gain recognition within the industry. Businesses can position itself as a trusted authority in the integration space, attracting more customers and strategic partnerships, by displaying successful integration case studies, publishing relevant content, and participating in industry events. 

Attracting Tech Partners and Business Development Teams to Your Marketplace and Partner Program 

Ultimately, the most successful app marketplaces are those where tech partners are eager to build into your product, or at least happy to have an integration to your product. 

Marketing to business development teams should involve a mix of general marketing and product marketing. Key ways you can market your partner program and marketplace to partners:

  • A landing page intended for partnership teams
  • A sales deck and one sheet about your tech partner program with the ROI partners can expect to see

See an example of Box’s Technology Partner Program Guide here

  • Blog articles building a  business case for being part of your marketplace’s list of solutions
  • Social posts with material highlighting your successful tech partnerships
  • Events, webinars, and conferences for your current and potential partners
  • Compelling sales collateral for your partners' sales teams to use  
Source: Box’s Technology Partner Program webpage where they outline the benefits of being a part of their program such as marketing templates, event sponsorships, launch support, and more.

Campaigns should focus on the business value of joining the ecosystem of solutions in your marketplace. This can be done by presenting:

  • The unique problem your product solves
  • How your product is particularly sticky and integral to your users’ workflows
  • The number and type of users you have
  • How your users are using other software in their tech stacks
  • Why integrating with your product makes life easier for users
  • Any case studies or data on driving ROI for your tech partners through new leads, increasing conversions, reducing customer churn, or upsells
  • Why your users generally prefer integrated software
  • The perks of your partnership program, including any co-marketing and co-selling resources, and any favorable terms
Source: Stripe’s social media post announcing their app marketplace and its benefits via social media and video marketing.

Source: Brightcove announced the launch of their app marketplace via a blog post and recorded webinar where they detailed the benefits for customers and partners.

Attracting Partner Developers to Your Marketplace and Partner Program

Tech partnerships involving user-facing integrations sit at the intersection of partnerships, product, and engineering. To scale an in-app marketplace, getting third-party developers on board is key. Excited developers result in more integrations built and maintained, ultimately creating a better user experience for your customers.

How you can market to developers:

  • A web page for developers with clear documentation on your API and what can be accomplished with it
  • Offering developer forums where questions can be asked and answered
  • Developer-specific blogs or content
  • Hosting events for developers
  • Being active in online and in-person developer communities
  • Free developer sandboxes where developers can try building integrations and understand your product

These initiatives should exhibit benefits that developers care about. This can be done by highlighting:

  • How simple and seamless your API is to work with, including having the configuration options users will need
  • How well-supported and robust your API is
  • The cool stuff that can be created working with your API
  • Your tech team knows what it is doing and is available for troubleshooting

Marketing the Marketplace to Prospects and Customers

Marketing the marketplace to prospects and customers is essential to driving adoption and showing ROI. These campaigns should highlight individual integrations and the app marketplace itself.

How to market to prospects and customers:

  • Email campaigns that are segmented to user profiles and share integrations of interest
  • In-app messaging for new integrations to users based on usage
Source: HubSpot includes a link to their app marketplace in their in-app navigation bar and also pushes out in-app notifications for new integration releases.
  • Social posts highlighting your new or popular integrations
  • Social polls asking about favorite integrations or most desired integrations
  • Press releases
  • Ads targeted to users who are already using partner integrations
  • Ads targeted to your current customers broken down by user profile, and highlighting integrations they are most likely to use
  • Search ads for people looking for integrations to your tech partners’ products
  • Provide logo, elevator pitch for the product, and integration description, as well as any other materials, to all tech partners for their website, sales, and marketing campaigns. 
  • Webinars explaining one or a few important integrations and how they work
  • Clear documentation on how to use the integrations, with a FAQ for the in-app marketplace
  • Blog content on the value of using the in-app marketplace or particular key integrations
Source: Aircall’s blog post about reaching 100 integrations in their marketplace.
  • Events targeted at particular user profiles that include information on integrations of interest
  • Promote integrations inside your application, either in the marketplace or where they might be used in a user's workflow. 

How to Leverage Beta Customers and Partners to Amplify Your Launch 

Leveraging Beta Customers

The more you have involved beta customers in the marketplace build and rollout, the more they will amplify its official launch.

On launch day you’ll want some kind of event, whether it is a large conference your organization is holding or a webinar. During this event, you can showcase one or two beta customers. These customers should be as high profile and as enthused as possible. 

You should start promoting this event two weeks out to prospects and customers. If possible, you should segment these communications to reflect which integrations the prospect will be most excited about.

A mix of emails, social, and ads (and any other channels you use to promote webinars) should be most effective. On social, tag and thank the beta customers who will participate in your event.

Including marketplace images and describing important use cases in your marketing newsletter a few weeks before launch can also help to lift the number of registrants.

If you own or participate in any communities on social media or Slack, announce the event in the weeks leading up to the launch.

Leveraging Partners

You’ll likely have a few integrations in your marketplace before launch and you’ll want to leverage these partnerships to draw attention to the launch. 

You can include your top two partners in your event day webinar — they can showcase their integrations and what customers can accomplish by using them.

Ensure that all the marketing materials submitted by partners (or written by your team) are clear, helpful, and easy to understand. You will likely have explanatory marketing materials inside your app and your public marketplace.

Ask your partners to promote the webinar leading up to the launch, and to promote the marketplace on the day of the launch. For any partner that has relevant, strong website traffic, you should ask to write a guest blog on the marketplace and your integration that they can publish on launch day.

Ask to include 3-4 of your most important partners in a press release on the marketplace. This can amplify your news as each of their teams work to get it placed and shared.

If any of your partners own active communities, see if they will let you promote and announce your webinar in those communities.

Ahead of the launch, enable your partners’ sales teams with decks and info sheets on your product and the integration and encourage them to share it with relevant prospects.

After the initial launch, you will want to continue to engage your prospects, customers and partners so that they use the marketplace and continue to provide feedback on the experience and how it can be improved. 

Ongoing marketing initiatives can include regular webinars on getting the most value out of the integrations, case studies featuring customers using integrations, and segmented suggestions for using the marketplace to accelerate business objectives. 

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