The exploding interest B-to-B marketers have shown in account-based marketing (ABM) is mostly about revenue. Altera Group research finds that 97% of marketers surveyed said that ABM has a higher ROI than other marketing initiatives.
As traditional marketing practices continue to decline, and inbound strategies fail to fill the gap, more and more marketers are shifting to targeted and personalized approaches to drive pipeline and revenue. In a recent Sirius Decisions survey, 93 percent of respondents said they consider ABM “extremely” or “very” important to their organizational success.
While Account-Based Marketing is evolving and adding new dimensions to it, Implementing ABM in the right way is important to generate the maximum revenue results. Here are 5 best ABM practices that B-to-B marketers should follow in 2020:
1. Focus on right target accounts
Account-Based Marketing is about marketing to a whole organization rather than an individual. We (marketers) are used to defining individual personas; this is a critical distinction. Account-Based Marketing efforts should be kick-started by determining the common type of organizations that bring in a major share of revenue at their organization. For instance, define the industry, company size, location, annual revenue, upsell opportunity, profit margin, etc. for the accounts that are yielding your business the highest long-term profits. Those are the types of accounts you want to go after.
This process will likely consist of both quantitative and qualitative research. Having the right data to back it up will ensure you’re heading to the right goal. Major contributors to this data can be the employees who work on the front-line with prospects and customers; they know your customers than anyone else.
Finding and focusing on high probable accounts major factor which impacts your ABM strategy, persona and other factors comes next. Once the right target accounts are focused you can keep building the block on a stronger platform.
2. Target all key stakeholders in a single account
As mentioned above, for a long time B-to-B targeting happened at an individual level — the idea was to target the right decision-maker. However, the B-to-B process is no longer limited to one decision-maker. Rather, most accounts have multiple key decision-makers and Influencers. Each player has his own set of compulsions and ideas about which solution or service best meets the account goals.
In such a scenario, businesses cannot limit themselves to single decision-maker. Your ABM strategy should address this critical aspect of selling to a group by allowing businesses to tailor their messaging to first clearly define specific pain-points, and then inform and educate how their product or service can address the queries of individual stakeholders and their problem areas effectively!
3. Deliver personalized experience in every touchpoint
Conversations are the most important factor in marketing; the days of linear marketing are long gone. Businesses simply cannot afford to use generic marketing and sales strategies or messaging to deliver stellar brand experiences. You should understand the stakeholders’ specific pain points and appeal to how you can solve them with your messaging and imagery.
Keep in mind that the beauty of ABM is that it’s personalized to targeted organizations; this is why your content needs to speak specifically to them. Each and every message or content needs to be personalized to address customers who are in different stages of the buying cycle. Marketers need to work together with their sales and design team to ensure the content is visually engaging, but also communicating the right messages to their key stakeholders.
4. Decide on the Best Channels for Your Campaigns
Your ABM strategy and content will be useless if you’re not promoting your campaigns and creative in the right channels. You need to understand where these stakeholders spend their time online, and what their state of mind is when they’re on social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
For B-to-B marketers, Facebook and LinkedIn can be powerful channels to target the right stakeholders because you can actually run campaigns to appeal to specific organizations, as well as titles within those organizations.
5. Get sales and marketing in the same room
Theoretically, the Sales and Marketing departments of an organization should always work together. But is that always the case? If you observe situations from your own experience, you might realize that these two teams are focused on a common goal, but work separately towards it.
According to research from Content Marketing Institute and LinkedIn, 81% of marketers in highly aligned companies were more likely to closely collaborate with their sales team on the way they use content when compared to just 25% of marketers in low aligned companies.
The most interesting fact that came out of this report is that ABM was considered to be a definite sign of alignment. 57% of highly aligned companies had implemented this strategy into their marketing efforts. Account-based marketing has a direct relation to using high-quality content since it has to direct it to specific accounts.
One of the biggest advantages of ABM is that it flips the sales funnel on its head — businesses start out by focusing first on specific high-value accounts and then expanding those accounts to help create multiple opportunities for returns. Since there are a limited number of accounts that are actively in-market, it doesn’t make sense to divide them up into sales and marketing. Instead, both teams work together to reach and convert their target accounts across each stage of Account-Based Marketing Journey.
Most of the marketers find that ABM is yielding huge returns for their business. Let us know about your experience!
Originally published at https://salesboxai.com on November 11, 2019.