As the digital revolution unfolds, new SaaS startups are popping up left and right, many legacy tech players are reinventing their B2B brand voice, and the following copywriting problems aren’t going away anytime soon:
How do we sell our platform and services without sounding overly technical?
How do we balance nuts-and-bolts functionality with a bigger, more emotional brand story?
How do we come across as a company of real people who prospects would love to work with?
Fortunately, there are companies like Axonius we can all learn from. Axonius is a technology company specializing in cybersecurity and asset management. Their platform connects to hundreds of devices, cloud assets, apps, and other data sources to give IT teams and leaders the information they need to identify and address security threats—providing, as one user put it, “a single source of visibility and truth.”
The company’s B2B business model necessitates technical copy, but they find ways of infusing their marketing language with plenty of warmth and humanity. Let’s dive in to see what every SaaS company can learn about crafting a B2B brand voice that talks tech in a way that makes readers want to spend more time with the brand—and the people behind it.
Own a simple, single-minded concept.
When I mention Volvo, what’s the first word that comes to mind? For most people, they think “safety.” The brand has invested a fortune over the years to claim that word—and it’s more than just a word. It’s an identity. Aligning with a single attribute like this has a powerful effect on consumer behavior. For buyers in the market for a car and concerned with safety, Volvo’s brand positioning makes them a forerunner.
In a similar way, Axonius has laid claim to a single problem they purport to solve for IT managers: Complexity. The homepage headline boldly proclaims, “Complexity is inevitable,” followed by body copy that succinctly articulates the Axonius solution: “So focus on what you can control. Learn how Axonius uses the tools you already have to manage and secure all assets.”
Further down the page, they continue to drive the point home: “We give IT and security teams the confidence to control complexity by mitigating threats, navigating risk, decreasing incidents, and informing business-level strategy—all while eliminating manual, repetitive tasks.” In the end, their B2B brand voice leaves no doubt about what problem Axonius is solving for their reader—and a problem well-stated is a problem half-solved.
Demonstrate technical expertise—but don’t be a robot.
A website has to work hard to earn a reader’s trust—and with studies showing visitors decide whether to stay or go in 2.6 seconds, you don’t have much time. Axonius gets straight to the point with a homepage subhead that reads, “Why IT and Security Teams Trust Axonius,” followed by blurbs addressing hyper-detailed pain points. A line like, “Fragmented data sources, multiple device types and operating systems, and decentralized ownership mean visibility challenges for IT and infrastructure teams,” shows Axonius understands its audience—and speaks its language.
But if all Axonius did was reflect the jargon of its audience, the copy would quickly fall flat. Wisely, they weave in warmth and personality to their B2B brand voice when appropriate. Consider this introduction to a blog post:
Inventorying, managing, and securing assets was simple back in the day.
The attack surface consisted of servers and any asset (like, laptops and desktops) with an internet connection.
Boy, have times changed!
The perimeter of the attack surface has grown. And still continues to do so. Now, it’s about applications (SaaS apps, too!), mobile devices, websites, cloud services, collaboration tools, social media pages, and more.
From the outset, it’s clear the writer knows their stuff. But phrases like “back in the day,” and “Boy, have times changed!” make the tone relatable—it sounds like a conversation two people might have in person. For a field like technology where language can quickly turn to buzzword soup, one feels a sigh of relief encountering this sort of humanized copy. It says you’re in good hands—and encourages you to read on.
Showcase the people behind the product.
Done poorly, B2B copywriting can easily make a brand sound like a faceless corporation—all features and functionality, no soul or personality. One simple way to get around that is to highlight the very humans who work at the company. Axonius does this well. The Leadership page reads, “We’re led by cybersecurity veterans (both literal and figurative) with proven track records of bringing innovative cybersecurity products to market.” This line pays homage to C-suite members with a background in military service—while bolstering their brand as trustworthy security experts.
In addition to sharing details about their impressive tech experience, the Leadership bios are peppered with personal details, from hobbies to family life. These endearing bits and pieces warm things up and add personality to each profile. You get the sense that these are real, down-to-earth people you’d enjoy working with:
- “He lives on Cape Cod with his wife, daughter, and dog, and enjoys watching the unfairly dominant New England Patriots.”
- “She enjoys crafting her own cocktails and spinning on her Peloton.”
- “When he’s not recruiting you can find him on a soccer field cheering on his two children, and telling his dog to sit.”
Axonius has even gone so far as to come up with a branded team name. On the Careers page, the headline reads, “Become an Axonian,” followed by some copy describing what makes their team tick: “We’re a passionate group of problem solvers. Innately curious, we’re excited about using technology to take on the toughest challenges in cybersecurity. Want to join us? Check out our open roles.”
It all comes together to convey that people at Axonius are regular folks like you and me—who just so happen to be cybersecurity badasses.
Add a sprinkle of creativity and playfulness.
Let’s review what copy traits we’ve covered thus far: Single-minded positioning? Check. Technical authority? Check. Relatable humanity? Check. If Axonius stopped here, they’d be miles ahead of many other SaaS brands. But the company flexes their copywriting chops even further by adding a touch of wit that surprises and charms.
For instance, one video is titled, “The Demo Before the Demo,” offering site visitors a “15-minute look at the problem we solve, and how we solve it.” The cleverness of this title breaks the fourth wall in a way. It shows genuine empathy for its reader, saying, in effect: “Look, we get that you might not be ready to sign up for a full-blown demo just yet—no pressure, we’ve got you covered.”
From playful invitations to download long-form assets (“There’s a new tech in town—and it’s called CAASM”) to humorous recruiting bids (“Want to join this rocketship? Check out the open roles at Axonius”), Axonius finds ways to add a splash of creativity throughout its content—without ever overshadowing the direct, straightforward language that underpins its credibility. In one blog post, they even manage to make a Super Mario Bros. reference—sure to hit home with tech folks—without undermining the employee achievements highlighted in the post.
A growing company got support for its content needs
Known for smart and capable HR products, PeopleDoc makes life simpler for corporations around the world. But as her company grew, marketer Jolene Nicotina found she needed help too—especially with a constant stream of blog posts, lead generation content, and more. But after tapping MarketSmiths, Jolene found the help she needed. We offer sparkling copy whenever PeopleDoc needs it, saving Jolene time and growing web traffic at her company by 40%.
Make it look effortless.
Bringing all of these copy qualities together isn’t easy—even though Axonius makes it seem that way. It begins with a deep understanding of who you are, how you’re different, and what you have to offer the market. And it ends with the skillful wielding of words in a way that entices readers from the very first sentence—and enchants them all the way to the final call to action.
Need technical copywriting that connects with readers on a human level? Get in touch with MarketSmiths today.