Account-based marketing (ABM) is a marketing and sales strategy focusing on turning ideal customers into accounts. With ABM businesses can gain higher revenues in a shorter time period. This is because instead of starting from scratch in contacting new leads, companies are contacting promising leads the company already has.
This strategy perfectly complements the traditional, short-term, lead-generation goal with efforts targeting long-term revenue growth. Not only will the company benefit from gaining possible customers from promising leads they already have, but they also will benefit from gaining possible clients from new leads. To be successful with this strategy, business owners must know how it works and how to approach it.
How ABM works
The team must first define the organization’s ideal accounts. This is somewhat similar to the company’s buyer persona, however, narrowed down to specific businesses.To use account-based marketing means to use the marketing funnel, including to identify, expand, engage and advocate when it comes to ideal accounts.
- Identify – The team will research accounts that are converted into leads. They will then research those accounts by learning who is already a lead and that person’s position at the company.
- Expand – The company will connect with the contacts to share valuable content to those accounts. For example, the team leader can give them an online conference that benefits their organizations.
- Engage – Businesses must engage the existing network and then engage the contacts with more important content once the business connects and can expand the network in this account. The business team will now have a chance to personalize how they can solve critical points in the company. The engaging step includes having a potentially ready, extremely targeted opportunity to close the deal.
- Advocate – Businesses must advocate their products/service. The goal for this stage is to eventually obtain upsell opportunities and more referrals. To achieve this, the company will want its network to become so invested it’s willing to support and tell its industry about ABM and its products/services.
There are three ABM approaches available: programmatic ABM, ABM lite and strategic ABM.
The strategic ABM’s core focus is relationship-building. This approach is devoted to making personalized marketing campaigns demonstrating the ideal account’s in-depth understanding.
The ABM Lite includes pursuing ABM at scale, focusing on lightly customized/personalized campaigns targeting a similar group of accounts.
And last, programmatic ABM combines the two previously mentioned ABMs by using latest technologies to customize marketing campaigns for ideal accounts at scale.
Benefits of ABM
In addition to the benefits already mentioned, ABM’s other benefits include the following: A win-win for customers and marketing and sales efforts, and there’s a dedicated marketing involvement in the sales efforts. ABM also has more targeted, nurtured people in the sales funnel and provides a better customer experience.
Typically, this strategy is made for B2B industries having longer cycles of sales. However, other kinds of B2B companies can benefit as well. Either way, ABM, if used appropriately, will help the company go a long way. Clients will gain more trust in the business and will communicate more effectively for more exposure and possibly more business.
Getting started with ABM
Companies working with ABM must create the ideal account’s profile. Just using the ideal account’s persona is not enough. They must also look into the company’s size, the industry, the common pain points and key decision makers.
The next step is to relentlessly produce the CRM data. Business leaders may not possess all the account information needed in the CRM to better comprehend each account. If that’s the case, they must concentrate on building up information so they can leverage it.
After the business team researches and gathers the information, it can start creating targeted, personalized and scalable content. When it does this, it can contact these targeted accounts to demonstrate how its products/services can help the targeted company. The team can now personalize and tailor how they can solve the potential client’s critical company areas.
After completing this step, the team must connect the marketing and sales CRM together. The step includes rolling up the CRM workflow and lifecycle changes. When doing this, the team can have the right stage of information in each account by reporting and tracking each stage.
The last step in this process is the alignment of sales and marketing using an ABM strategy. The company’s sales and marketing team will have regular meetings to discuss the right approach for each targeted account.
The traditional inbound sales funnel is always a good idea. Nevertheless, the account-based marketing strategy is also a complementary angle to aid in gaining more business. With ABM businesses can gain higher revenues in a shorter time period. This strategy perfectly complements the traditional, short-term, lead generation goal with efforts targeting long-term revenue growth.
If you want to experience the full benefits of ABM for your business, you can get in touch with Demand Works Media today.