Expanding your SaaS business to reach new segments requires careful planning, specific strategy and a thorough understanding of the customer. Ashley Grech, the Global Head of Sales for Square, shares advice and tips based on learnings from Square’s incredible success in moving upmarket and expanding their customer base from micro-merchants to large enterprises. 


The “Jobs to Be Done” Framework

The Jobs to Be Done (JTBD) framework is a methodology used to identify and empathize with a customer’s struggle and their desired progress. As Grech describes it: “Square follows the ‘Jobs to Be Done’ framework, which is an idea that customers will hire your product based on a need or a job they need to get done. That sounds kind of simple, but this actually helps you think about your product, not as a transaction, but it helps you to…understand the underlying need behind a purchasing decision.”

If you understand the job that the customer wants to hire a product or service for, you can more accurately develop products and create marketing messaging tailored to what customers are trying to accomplish.

Applying JTBD to Your Offerings

Your product’s core building blocks and reason for existence will help you navigate your customers’ JTBD. You must consider the following questions:

  • At its most fundamental level, what problem does your product solve? This is not about what can it do, but what job your product accomplishes that a customer needs to be done.
  • Once you have determined your fundamental purpose, can you replicate it across a broader audience? Could the same JTBD apply to an entirely different segment altogether?

Grech comments, “If you’re thinking about trying to expand or broaden your customer base, you should begin to assess whether or not your current offering can serve the ‘jobs to be done’ of a different segment, different size segment, or a different industry.”

Supporting Multiple Customer Segments

If you want to expand your servable market, take these steps:

  1. Learn the JTBD for Your New Segments. Do your research to find out what your new segment needs, then assess your current product experience: What might need to change to serve this larger customer or new industry?
  2. Target With Intention. Once you know how your offerings need to adjust, you’ll decide what adjacent markets to which you could feasibly sell. Then, target the broadest TAM possible without reinventing or overhauling your entire product.
  3. Clear GTM. Before forming your GTM strategy, know the answer to these three questions:
    • Do you have a nuanced understanding of the buyer?
    • What do your buyers care about?
    • How will you reach your prospects?
  4. Structure Your Team Correctly. Decide whether to add new experienced leaders to your teams to help you expand your segment. Will you need unique or specialized knowledge or new processes? Grech says, “Empower your team with colleagues that know your space that you’re trying to move into, that they are familiar with the pain points that you are trying to solve for, and that they can speak a lingo and reach those customers.”

Advice for Moving Upmarket

Reach Customers With Complex Needs

Assuming that you won’t need a major product overhaul, think about moving upmarket as a packaging play. What groupings or branding of your products and services would most appeal to the JTBD of your customers?

Collaborate With Marketing to Reach These New Customers

“It is critical to identify these new jobs to be done, and then work with marketing to create the most connective messaging with this new customer base.” Grech goes onto suggest that you outline a plan to raise awareness amongst your new prospects through specific channels that will matter most to them.

Build the Right Feedback Loops

Your product team and frontline teams should communicate on a continuing basis. The product team should offer recommendations on how to package or bundle the product offerings to appeal to the new segment. And the frontline teams on the ground, like sales and support, can give direct customer feedback to the product team to continue to make improvements.

Key Takeaways

  • Identify JTBD and be intentional about growth.
  • Build for scale and flexibility.
  • Create a strong people foundation around your expanding needs.
  • Create a fast and robust feedback loop around the voice of your customers.

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