The Definitive Guide to Account-Based Marketing
There is something interesting happening to marketing at present. Have you heard of Account Based Marketing (ABM)?
ABM has become a quite popular kind of marketing over the days for B2B companies who targets larger accounts. It is best suited for companies that try to sell into larger accounts with long sales cycles and large deal sizes. Today’s digital marketing company makes use of ABM that delivers higher ROI.
So, What is Account Based Marketing (ABM)?
A popular business marketing strategy, Account Based Marketing, focus on a few target accounts within a market. It makes use of a personalized campaign specifically designed to engage each account and thereby providing marketing messages on specific attributes and the requirement of the account. ABM takes care of marketing in a holistic view that is beyond just lead generation. Focus is given to the existing customer to encourage them for up selling and cross-selling. It is one of the keys to get the most value from the largest accounts you have.
Being a highly focused business strategy where the company’s marketing team considers a customer like their market. The marketing team creates content, entire campaigns, events that are dedicated to people who are linked with that account instead of the industry. Having mentioned this, ABM markets based on a specific customer and is a market of one. This exercise is classically carried on by enterprise-level sales organizations and is most benefited to B2B.
Account Based Marketing is best suited for B2B where organizations deal with multiple stakeholders or buyers. ABM should be essentially used as an addition to your company’s larger digital strategy. The main goal of ABM is to target larger accounts that more likely to pose more business opportunities within the organization. As ABM has its goal, it has many benefits as well.
Let us discuss a few of its benefits:
- The Marketing Approach is Personal – ABM is devoted to decision-makers that are all within the same organization, due to which it ensures that your marketing campaigns are designed to vibrate with these specific set of people. It could be hard for marketing campaigns to cater to a wider audience to make the individual feel that their requirements are being met. When the audiences are bigger, the more type of people your business is trying to help. ABM allows you to personalize all your content and messages to an intimate group of people.
- Monitor Return on Investment – The biggest challenges of the marketing department are to link certain marketing campaigns with new revenue. When you market to buyers for a business you are already linked up with, it is easy to attribute your revenue with your marketing campaign.
- Target Only Specific Business – You will end up spending less time on marketing campaigns that do not give you new business. Along with ABM ensuring that you have a better ROI, it also ensures that you don’t spend too much time or resources on projects that have no clear business value. While you spend a small portion of your marketing budget on ABM, you are inclined to make your department more stable when you have a slow quarter or any decline on the specific season from your wider audience. It can be said in other words, that ABM is like an insurance policy for your marketing team.
- Reduce in the Sales Cycle – Lead generation is a major part of marketing and it must handle sales as well. Some leads would not turn into customers. It is the sales team’s performance to search for these leads to take away from their pipeline when there is no reply to their outreach. ABM takes the responsibility to generate more qualified leads as the business would like to hear from you. Due to this, the sales staff will have to reduce their time taken to groom leads who are unlikely to become customers and spend the maximum time that is likely to get connected with.
- Strengthens your Relationship with Clients – Most businesses tend to lose customers over months. Customer retention is very important to sustain business growth. Your customer service team should be at the lead to activate this effort, at the same time, ABM also helps your marketing and sales teams to become an equal part of it. Although ABM does not involve expanding your business with a client, it strengthens your business relationship with your client. When you keep networking with more business people and focus on their requirements, you can increase customer retention.
- Sales and Marketing Teams are Aligned – The pressure seen in both sales and marketing teams from olden times. The sales goal is to get better leads and marketing goals are to gain more visibility to the customers to improve their strategy. When ABM is concerned, sales and marketing are aligned integrally. Both teams will get a grip on whom they are dealing with.
Let us see few examples of ABM:
- Webinars – Webinars are created for a specific target account that can be customized for specific companies. You can create unique webinar content keeping the target audience in mind.
- Events – The sales team found it worth the in-person events to persuade the decision makers. ABM approach to events includes special VIP dinners, personalized invitations for the target accounts, personalized gifts, and follow-up after the event.
- Direct Mail – When most of the communication takes place through the mail, direct mail has been a popular method to reach the prospects in a company. As ABM has a targeted approach, marketing though direct mail has a higher value as it raises the potential for revenue.
- Email Campaigns – Even though direct mail is quite popular, email has been a valuable marketing channel for ABM. It involves tailored email messages for every individual and company.
- Paid Advertising – Paid advertising and social media ads are a popular method to reach out to the target accounts on the web. By using social platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn, you can target a specific companies and individuals by using technologies like re-targeting and IP targeting. You can even target to focus on a few target accounts.
- Web Personalization – Once a visitor reaches a website, the website personalization technology is used to create a customized, account-specific experience for the audience.
Ways to implement ABM
Having discussed the ABM in detail, let us see the ways to implement it. Here is the step-by-step process to set up an ABM.
- Recognize your target accounts who are of high value to your business. These are the main accounts who have the potential to contribute more to your business. The audiences are another company and not individual people. Finding out the target accounts should a joint effort of the sales and marketing team as data will be required from both sides.
- Have an analysis of those accounts – After you recognize your target accounts, get the feel of the customer requirements and their customer journey. Get to know with various elements like the company structure and the main players. Convey the product services to the target especially for decision-makers and influencer.
- Create your content for the main players within all the accounts. The content should be specific to the business.
- Choose the right channels to promote it. This should be based on what is more appropriate for a given organization.
- Develop a customized marketing campaign by using the information you had in the analysis stage.
- Execute your customized marketing campaigns to your target account. Execution of marketing campaign requires some care. The messages will have to be coordinated across multiple channels.
- After the customized marketing campaign is launched to your target account, analyse the data to see the performance of the marketing campaign. Every marketing campaign will have to be measured properly with respect to new methodologies.