My name is Greg Bardwell and I have been an entrepreneur for more than 20 years. I love SaaS- both as a way to deliver software and as a business model.
It was 15 years ago when I had my first SaaS called MathRealm, long defunct. That was built on ColdFusion and we were known as Application Service Providers (ASP) back then. Trust me! It was so much harder back then.
Nowadays, anyone can whip a SaaS MVP in just a few weeks with the help of a highly experienced developer. I did just that earlier this year with bestopenhouseapp.com, with a friend who is a real estate broker. With our developer and a number of the infrastructure from several of my previous projects and products, we had it in 6-weeks.
Marketing and integration are different stories, however. The marketing aspect took us 4 paid apps and many tools with several free ones. It was almost as much work as the app itself. All these on top of a completely different skill set, which we had to outsource at a substantial cost.
Also, we paid for ClickFunnels, Zapier, SendGrid, and Intercom as well as hired an expert to setup Google Tag Manager and analytics, stitch the figures altogether and interpret them. We were paying for the ones highlighted below for a total of $432.20/month to get the capability we needed to run experiments to and do in-app triggered drip sequences for onboarding and marketing. And this was just getting started. Compare this to the free or the $99/month SaturnOne.io plans. That is a saving of over 300%.
|ClickFunnels (website & landing pages)||$97 – $297|
|SendGrid (Transactkional & Drip)||$14.95 – $24.95|
|Zapier (to integrate)||$61.25|
|Drip/ActiveCampaign (email marketing)||$49 / $70|
|LeadPages/Unbounce (landing pages)||$27 / $97|
|Google Tag Manager||free|
|Total to Start||$222.2 to $453.20|
Every change we made broke the funnels. And the complexity…it got quickly out of hand.
For a SaaS founder with almost 10 years of experience in the marketing technology space like me, it still needed countless hours of effort and hacks just to get on to the experimentation of test messages, channels, and marketing funnels at the most basic level. Not being able to see flows of out trials, leads…!!! It took manual labor by our contractor to compile data for reports…