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Buffer's MRR has only grown 10% in the last 6 months. In this post I dissect their SaaS metrics to identify why and offer my recommendations.

  • KK

    Karl Kangur

    8 months ago #

    The real issue with them is that the product is simply not keeping up with the competition :) They had the benefit of entering the market early and being good at marketing early on. Now they product is stagnant, competitors have kept improving their products, and they've lost their marketing game.

    • KL

      Kevan Lee

      8 months ago #

      Thanks for this post, @justin_butlion and for the conversation here. It's great food for thought! I lead the marketing team at Buffer and would be happy to answer any questions or send along any details. :)

      • KL

        Kevan Lee

        8 months ago #

        @justin_butlion1

        Yes, happy to share!

        On the marketing side, we're taking a closer look at the data to see the LTV for our various channels. We've historically been quite heavy on word-of-mouth acquisition, so we'd also love to build in some attribution models so we can understand where our "best" (active, engaged, paying, etc) customers are coming from.

        Going up market is definitely on the table. We're keen to increase our ARPU, and one strategy we're looking to employ in 2018 is being more explicit in how Buffer can benefit small businesses.

        On the product side, we have a few plans in place to diversify the tools we offer. There're a lot of jobs to do on social media, and we'd love to help with many of them. We feel this will help a lot with retention/churn. We're also looking at our onboarding & activation to see what kind of opportunities are there.

        That's kind of a general overview -- let me know if I can dig into any of that!

      • JB

        Justin Butlion

        8 months ago #

        Hey @kevanlee . Thanks for your comment. I'm a big fan of your writing for many years now:)

        I'd love to know how Buffer's marketing strategy is changing based on the fact that revenue from new business is flat over the last 6 or so months. Are you planning on moving more up market? Do you feel the issue is more on the product side? Anything you can share would be great.

        Thanks Kevin.

    • GH

      Glen Harper

      8 months ago #

      This tweet seems to indicate that their marketing is (or continues to be) quite effective for them https://twitter.com/Brian_G_Peters/status/942395460026884097

      • JB

        Justin Butlion

        8 months ago #

        Thanks for sharing Glen. Those numbers are definitely impressive but as I highlighted in my post, they are struggling to generate revenue from new users and in keeping churn low.

      • GH

        Glen Harper

        8 months ago #

        @justin_butlion Absolutely. This was simply a response to the notion that they've lost their marketing game when it appears that they are doing more of it than ever.

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