16 Customer Acquisition Strategies To Increase Conversion Rates

16 Customer Acquisition Strategies To Increase Conversion Rates cover

With the right customer acquisition strategies, you can convert potential customers to paying users and set the stage for turning them into long-term loyal users. This article shows you how.

As you read on, you will learn:

  • The power of search engines, content marketing, and existing user testimonials and how to leverage them to win new users.
  • In-app strategies for converting free or trial users to paying customers.
  • Best practices for effective customer acquisition and product-led growth.


  • A customer acquisition strategy is a comprehensive plan for attracting, engaging, and converting new customers into paying users.

16 Customer acquisition strategies to attract new customers and grow your user base:

Best practices for implementing a successful customer acquisition strategy:

  1. Conduct thorough user and market research, then define your audience.
  2. Focus on the right customer acquisition channels.
  3. Personalize your campaigns.
  4. Measure campaign performance and refine your customer acquisition strategy.
  • Userpilot can help you implement effective customer acquisition strategies to drive sustainable growth. Book a demo now to begin.

What is a customer acquisition strategy?

A customer acquisition strategy is a comprehensive plan for attracting, engaging, and converting new customers into paying users.

For your strategy to be solid, it needs to factor in the channels and tactics you’ll use to acquire customers at the lowest customer acquisition cost. This is particularly important in SaaS, where the CAC payback period is anything from a few months to over one year.

16 Customer acquisition strategies to grow your customer base

This section covers strategies to attract your ideal users and keep them glued to your product when they finally sign up.

Leverage search engine optimization (SEO) in your marketing strategy

Identify relevant keywords related to your product or service and optimize your website content accordingly. Ensure the content is of good quality, competitive, and addresses your target audience’s needs.

By staying consistent with your SEO efforts, you’ll not only enhance your search rankings but also establish your brand as an authority in your industry and niche. Be strategic with your SEO; leverage contextual CTAs and have highly optimized landing pages encouraging users to sign up for your tool.

Increase customer acquisition efforts with paid campaigns

SEO is more of a slow and steady customer acquisition strategy. To get quicker results, you’ll need to leverage paid marketing.

Begin by promoting your paid ads on social media platforms and search engines. Create visually appealing and persuasive ad creatives that communicate your value proposition to potential customers. You can also implement A/B testing to see what resonates better with your audience.

FixDex uses LinkedIn ads as a customer acquisition strategy.
FixDex uses LinkedIn ads as a customer acquisition strategy.

Promote your case studies with paid ads on social media

Case studies make a good customer acquisition strategy because they showcase how your best customers reached business success with your tool. Potential users will see themselves in the case studies and be encouraged to use your solution.

Share detailed and compelling case studies on your social media pages. For faster results, implement targeted paid social ads to get more eyeballs on your content.

How Clearcalcs improved user activation with Userpilot.

Host product webinars to reach your target audience

Develop webinar content that educates your audience on industry trends, common challenges, and how your product addresses these issues.

Unless necessary, don’t put a price tag on the webinars; just gate the entry with a lead collection form. Make the webinars so valuable that potential customers will stick to the end and be motivated to check your tool out.

While you can host webinars yourself, also explore collaborating with industry influencers or complementary businesses to co-host some sessions. This expands your reach to a broader audience and adds credibility to your brand.

Record all your webinars so visitors and interested users can go over them later. For example, you can always watch our recorded webinars anytime you want—as many times as you need!

Watch our on-demand webinars and view Userpilot’s upcoming live events.

Use gated content for lead generation across the customer acquisition funnel

Produce quality content—ebooks, case studies, industry reports, free tools—and gate it.

The idea is to share resources free in exchange for lead data (mostly name, email, and basic company info). Tailor your gated content offerings to different stages of the customer journey so there’s something for every kind of visitor. For instance, use educational blog posts for awareness, case studies for consideration, and product demos for decision-making.

You must communicate the value of accessing the gated content. This way, the person on the other end of the screen knows they’re exchanging their details for something valuable.

Spring to action once you’ve started gathering lead data—nurture leads with targeted follow-up emails, providing additional value and guiding them through the conversion funnel.

Userpilot’s product adoption school is an example of leveraging gated content as part of SaaS customer acquisition strategies.

Encourage word-of-mouth marketing with existing customer testimonials

Happy and loyal users are more than excited to share their product experiences. Identify these users and reach out, asking that they write a review or grant you a video interview you can embed on your landing pages or social media.

Go over the testimonials and highlight specific outcomes and experiences to make the testimonials relatable and compelling. Another option is to give your users a template from the onset so they know how to structure the feedback.

Here’s a good example of sharing testimonials on your landing page:

How Kontentino increased new user activation with Userpilot.

Build trust with potential customers on software review platforms

SaaS users regularly visit review sites to find new products and evaluate competitors.

Leverage that opportunity to market your tool and attract new customers. Of course, most review sites don’t let you run ads on their platforms, but by asking your loyal customers to rate you properly and leave positive reviews, you’re marketing your tool.

High ratings build trust and make purchase decisions easy. Aim to get good reviews on platforms like G2, Capterra, and SourceForge.

Adobe Illustrator’s rating on G2.

Use YouTube marketing to reach relevant audiences

Develop informative and engaging videos related to your product or industry. This could include tutorials, product demos, customer success stories, thought leadership, and any other related content.

Use relevant keywords, compelling thumbnails, and clear video descriptions to optimize your YouTube videos for search engines. Also, always have CTAs in your description box to direct users to your platform.

Share your videos across your marketing channels to reach a wider audience and attract potential customers.

Ahrefs uses its YouTube tutorial videos as part of its customer acquisition strategies.

Leverage event marketing for brand awareness

Choose events that align with your target audience and industry. This could include trade shows, conferences, or even virtual events. If you can secure a speaking spot at major events, awesome! Other options you can explore include sponsorships and exhibitions.

Plus, you can host your own events regularly and collaborate with others in your industry. Any of these strategies you implement will help you pull in visitors and establish you as an industry thought leader.

Product Drive 2023 is over, but you can sign up/sign in and watch the replays.

Increase brand awareness and customer acquisition with viral growth loops

Growth loops, often called viral or referral loops, are self-reinforcing systems within a product that drive customer acquisition, engagement, and retention through a continuous cycle of positive actions. These loops leverage the existing user base to attract new customers, creating a self-sustaining and scalable mechanism for growth.

There are various ways to implement viral loops; a common strategy is to add brand labels to features that users share with others. For example, Calendly’s free meeting links include a “powered by Calendly” tag that subtly promotes the brand.

Calendly’s viral customer acquisition strategy (top right).

Use free trials to acquire product-qualified leads

Free trials allow your leads to experience the full spectrum of the product for a limited time and decide if it’s something they’d like to continue using.

Most SaaS buyers are scared of trying new products that will turn out to not meet their business objectives, so by having a free trial, you reduce that friction, making it more likely that they’ll convert to paying customers.

Later has a prominent free trial button on its homepage so visitors don’t miss it.

Shorten customer acquisition process with on-demand product demos

An on-demand demo is a self-guided product tour available anytime, anywhere, empowering customers to explore at their own pace and see the value instantly.

A good demo helps you drive fast acquisition with little to no sales effort. For example, Bynder uses a quick tutorial video to walk trial users through the platform’s key features. By watching the tour, trial users are better equipped to maximize the tool and convert to paying users.

Bynder product tour.

Use an onboarding email marketing strategy to nurture freemium users

Design a series of welcome emails that guide freemium users through the important features of your product, especially the ones that meet their JTBDs.

Use your onboarding emails to provide product tips and resources. Leverage user behavior data to send personalized emails that prompt them to explore your tool and derive value.

For instance, if a customer signed up but didn’t engage as expected, trigger an email telling them you noticed the slow engagement. Provide tailored resources and ask if they need help. Also, use your emails to remind users of the trial expiration and what they’ll miss if they don’t upgrade.


Onboarding email marketing is a big part of Airtable’s customer acquisition strategies.
Onboarding email marketing is a big part of Airtable’s customer acquisition strategies.

Offer in-app product walkthroughs to reduce friction for new customers

Don’t leave users to figure your tool out on their own. Even if your SaaS is super simple, some users will still take time to master it

Reduce the time to value and boost your adoption rates by implementing in-product walkthroughs that take users by the hand and show them how to use your software.

Leverage UI elements to create personalized user onboarding.
Leverage UI elements to create personalized user onboarding.

Implement referral programs to lower your customer acquisition costs

Design a referral program that provides attractive incentives for both the referrer and the new customer. The rewards could include discounts, increased feature usage limit, access to a premium feature, or other valuable perks.

Begin with your happy users; they already love your tool and wouldn’t mind telling people about it in exchange for a reward.

After sharing the opportunity in personalized messages to your happy users, actively promote the program across various channels, including email campaigns, social media, and in-app messaging. Keep the program visible to encourage ongoing participation.

Dropbox uses a referral program as part of its customer acquisition strategy.
Dropbox uses a referral program as part of its customer acquisition strategy.

Launch new products and features on ProductHunt

ProductHunt is one of those few platforms that open you to a steady pool of early adopters. SaaS enthusiasts visit the site regularly to find what’s new, and that’s your opportunity to attract new customers.

When you launch new features or products, craft engaging and concise descriptions that highlight the unique value propositions of your new offering. Use visuals, videos, and clear messaging to capture the attention of your target audience.

ProductHunt uses upvotes from real users to rank products. The more upvotes and positive comments your tool has, the higher you’ll be on the Top Products list. A good hack is to build anticipation before launch. Let your existing customers and people in your audience know about it; that way, you can redirect them to ProductHunt and get positive comments and reactions when you launch.

Userpilot’s launch on ProductHunt.
Userpilot’s launch on ProductHunt.

Best practices for implementing a successful customer acquisition strategy

Follow these best practices to create an effective customer acquisition strategy that pulls in and retains the right customers.

Properly define your audience

Start by creating detailed buyer personas that represent your ideal customers. Understand their demographics, interests, pain points, and behaviors, then use the data to finetune your customer acquisition strategies.

For example, imagine one of your user personas is an entrepreneur with a small team and on a budget. Your content marketing and paid ads should, in part, cater to businesses that need budget-friendly solutions.

Focus on the right customer acquisition channels

Identify the channels that resonate most with your target audience. This could include social media platforms, search engines, content marketing, email, or even offline channels, depending on your SaaS. Check your historical data to know what channels have brought your best users.

You can also conduct A/B testing to assess the effectiveness of different marketing channels and optimize your customer acquisition strategy based on the data.

For example, if you’re getting more users through events and paid advertising compared to social media, it’s time to double down on the first two. It doesn’t mean you’ll completely neglect your social media platforms; check to see if you can optimize them for better acquisition marketing.

Personalize your campaigns

Use lead generation forms to collect customer data and personalize your campaigns.

Tailor messages, offers, and content based on customer preferences, past interactions, and behavior. This adds a human touch to the user experience and makes your audience feel valued.

Consider the example below. Reading it, the trial user will feel like the email was addressed specifically to them and not to a generic audience. It will motivate them to click the links and engage more.

Userpilot's personalized welcome email.
Userpilot’s personalized welcome email.

Measure campaign performance and iterate

Define clear KPIs for each customer acquisition campaign. These could include metrics such as conversion rates, customer acquisition cost (CAC), return on investment (ROI), and customer lifetime value (CLV).

Once you’ve decided on the KPIs, use analytics tools like Hubspot to measure campaign effectiveness across different marketing channels.

Identify what works well and replicate successful customer acquisition strategies. Simultaneously, learn from underperforming campaigns to refine and optimize future efforts.

Traffic analytics on Hubspot.
Traffic analytics on Hubspot.


Now that you’ve learned effective acquisition strategies and best practices, go ahead and start applying them one step at a time.

Userpilot makes the process easy. Book a demo now and see how our platform helps you implement effective customer acquisition strategies to drive sustainable growth.

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