Let’s go on a journey.
What is Account Based Marketing?
B2B marketers often try to target as many companies as possible hoping that casting a wide net will hook a couple of opportunities. Now is the time to really consider your approach. Maybe hunting for business with a spear will generate better results. Account-Based Marketing is an alternative approach to traditional lead generation that concentrates sales and marketing resources on a strategically selected group of target accounts.
ABM requires more insight and content than traditional marketing and it has historically proven to be far more difficult to implement than a spray and pray approach. However, technological advances and the introduction of CRM systems have enabled sales teams to gather sales intelligence far easier than previously possible and at a fraction of the time.
Many B2B companies find that their sales teams perform better when targeting a small number of identified accounts rather than taking a broad-reaching approach to their business development effort. If your business fits ABM you need to consider the potential impact of adopting this approach, because the benefits are real. Take the test, it only takes five minutes.
Well if you are still reading you passed the test, great. Understanding the benefits is important, but you also need to understand how it works in reality. We do ABM in six stages.
Use all the sales intelligence and firmographic data to prioritize the target accounts with the highest potential to generate revenue. Things to consider are revenue potential, influence in the market, upsell opportunities or potential for higher than average profit margins.
Build a map of who the key players are in the decision-making process of your target accounts. Who do you need to convince? Who is reviewing your proposal? What are the deciding factors? What should you be saying?
Use sales intelligence to understand the significant business challenges that the stakeholders within you target accounts face. Then produce valuable content and messaging that can help relieve some of the pain from the identified business challenges.
Communicate with your target audience on all the channels they are active on, including web, mobile, email and direct mail. Consider which channels will be most effective at the various stages of the buying journey and the best times to follow up with leads.
Put your plans into action and brief your sales and marketing teams of the objectives. It is critical to coordinate your sales and marketing teams’ effort to achieve maximum impact.
Test, measure, and optimize your ABM campaigns to achieve objectives and improve your results over time. Evaluate the performance of individual campaigns and share any marketing/sales insight with the wider team.
The real first step is usually getting the rest of your team to buy into the idea - across leadership, sales and marketing.
Download our account-based marketing guide to learn the basics of ABM and lay the foundation that will unify your lead generation and account management functions.
Or if you think that you need some help to develop your ABM strategy get in touch. We'd be delighted to learn more about your business goals and develop a strategy that will deliver growth.
Michael talks about making the most of your B2B marketing activity