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Top 10 Books for SaaS Entrepreneurs

Talk to any SaaS entrepreneur you know and they will suggest a minimum of five books. Reading goes hand in hand when you are looking at starting a business. They help you understand what works best and what doesn’t. It helps you take informed decisions and learn from the mistakes that companies like yours made. 

With that said, listed below are 10 books that every person who is dreaming of starting up a SaaS business should read.

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

Influence is the book that anybody needs to read to learn the art of persuasion. It explains the psychology behind people who say  “yes”. In this book, you will learn the understanding behind this.  

As an entrepreneur, you will have to persuade a lot of people – starting with your investors to your clients. This book teaches you six principles that you can practice in your day to day life to become skilled in the art of persuading. By the time you finish this book, you would have understood the six weapons of persuasion – Reciprocation, Commitment and Consistency, Social Proof, Authority, Liking, and Scarcity.

If you take a look at SaaS pricing pages, you will notice that the lowest priced plan is listed first. This is because the first price is an anchor to all the plans listed next. They will be compared with the first price. Having the lowest plan listed first will persuade your customers into buying.

The book contains similar ideologies that you can incorporate into your business.

To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others

We as humans are all agents of sales at some point. Whether it is pitching a new idea, or entrepreneurs pitching to funders, or parents and teachers cajoling children to study, we spend a larger part of our lives trying to move people. This is sales. 

To Sell Is Human offers a fresh look at the art and science of selling. In this book, the author introduces us to the ABCs of selling. It shows us how taking the short roads works better in sales than taking the high way. In addition to this, Pink explains the five frames that will help you get the message clearer to your audience. The book is a must-read, if you want to ensure you sell right. When it comes to SaaS startups, most of the agents try to hard sell the product and pitch for features that are way ahead in the roadmap. This book teaches you how to sell what you have and close more deals. It helps sales agents upserve instead of upsell which when done right, gets the ball rolling with increased ROI.

Steal Like An Artist

We live in a world that is 4.5 billion years old. The truth is someone somewhere would have already tried every strategy. Steal Like an Artist offers you ten transformative principles that helps readers lead a creative life. This book is for SaaS designers, although not explicitly spelled out, incorporating these ideas into business can help a great deal.

The author normalizes the fact that nothing is original, and the art of embracing influence. It helps the readers discover a path and remix ideas to land upon new ones. The author encourages the readers to create art, that you would want to have. 

Don’t Make Me Think

Don’t make me think was initially published in 2000. The book was highly appreciated by web designers across the globe. It helped them understand the principles behind navigation and design. 20 years later the author re-examines the ideologies to suit the current audience. This book is a great pick for readers who are looking to be educated on web design. If you are SaaS business who is looking at launching a new website, undergoing a website redesign or revamping an existing site, this book is for you. 

The Lean Product Playbook

The common statement that you would hear as an entrepreneur is that “Most startups fail”. Yes, they do. But what if there is a way to prevent your failure, The Lean startup gives away approaches that are being adopted by different companies around the world. This book is a guide that helps SaaS businesses determine their target customers, identify underserved customer needs, create a winning product strategy, define your minimum viable product (MVP), design and test the MVP prototype and iterate rapidly to achieve product-market fit.

They Ask, You Answer

Today’s consumers have access to all the information that they need to make the decision. This can be a boon and a bane. To influence your buyers, you should be in a position to answer every question that they might have of your product. To be more precise you need to be a thought leader in your field. You need to be that teacher who has answers to all your questions. This book helps you achieve this. It empowers SaaS companies to connect with buyers online and increase their revenue multiple folds. It gives you a brief on the tools that will help you accomplish this. This book is a great read who is looking forward to understanding and optimizing buyer behavior.

Growth Hacker Marketing

In this book, Ryan tells us how certain well-known SaaS startups have grown over time. It illustrates real-time scenarios to help the readers understand how they can grow their business. It clearly outlines the metrics and insights that help you grow your startup without a marketing budget.

This book was published in 2014 and is still the most relevant books one must read to understand growth hacking. 

All Marketers Tell Stories

Marketers are great storytellers. This goes without saying. What differentiates them is whether we believe them or not. If they tell you the story in an enticing way, you believe them instantly. We believe that wine tastes better in a $20 glass than a $1 glass, an $80,000 Porsche Cayenne is vastly superior to a $36,000 VW Touareg, which is virtually the same car. 

What you need to be a successful marketer is to tell a story and not the benefits. The book helps you paint a vivid picture of what the customers would believe. This is a powerful book for anyone who wants to create things people truly want as opposed to commodities that people merely need. When it comes to a SaaS product, customers have a lot of alternatives. How you position and pitch your product has a huge impact in determining the success of your product. This book helps you understand the intricacies of what one should and should not tell.

Handbook on the Psychology of Pricing: 100+ effects on persuasion and influence every entrepreneur, marketer and pricing manager needs to know

Prices are a deciding factor when it comes to any business. Most often companies focus on their internal costs and set up pricing. Some people suggest that go with your gut feeling. Well, this book breaks all the myths and gives you a structured approach to price your product. It contains a 

After reading this book, you will understand how to influence customers’ buying behavior and set the right price for your product. As a SaaS entrepreneur, reading this book will help you:

  • Understand how to raise the attractiveness of your prices and offerings for your customers and lift sales and margins for your business.
  • Learn how to increase customers’ willingness to pay for your products and services.
  • Expand your pricing skill set and learn about more than 100 effects unearthed and backed by solid academic research.
  • Boost your professional value by emerging yourself into a new and growing field of research: behavioral pricing.
  • Stay ahead of the curve and receive free updates exclusive for readers.

How to Create Tech Products Customers Love 

If you are a tech startup, this book is for you. This book helps you understand how giants such as Amazon, Google, Facebook built products that customers love. Marty Vagan is a thought leader in product management. He helps you understand how to build SaaS products that customers will continue to use and reap the benefits of it. It helps you understand everything that you need to do right from building a team to embracing a lightweight process that will help you build the product. Irrespective of whether you are an early start-up or in the growth stage, the book is a must-read if you want to reinvent the way you look at your business. It sheds light on the need for customer engagement, consistency, and innovation. 

Bottom-line

Being a SaaS entrepreneur is not an easy task.

There are so many variables to consider and impress. 

The market cares only for products that truly stand out and offer something unique.

Armed with insights and knowledge from these 10 books, you should be able to get closer to having that.

There is also something that can help you ease this difficulty ⁠— digital product agencies.

With their far-ranging experience in multiple kinds of products, they can truly bring out the SaaS potential in your product.

Until then, keep reading and evolving!

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