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As ABM Gains in Popularity, Data is Key

December 06, 2016 / Staff Writer

It seems like everyone in the marketing industry is using Account-Based-Marketing (ABM) but no one has quite yet mastered it. It is not a brand new phenomenon as professionals in the sales and marketing industries have been practicing some form of account-based marketing for many years, but because of different tools and technologies, in recent years it has become a common practice in businesses small and large.

Businesses can reap major benefits from successful ABM strategies by experiencing more sales, gathering better data, creating cohesiveness between marketing and sales teams and cross selling within key accounts. The issue with ABM is not deciding whether or not your business should use it, it lies in deciding how to use it and where to use it. It is often thought of a simple task of creating a list and building a campaign around it, but a strong ABM strategy goes far beyond that. ABM often times falls short of its potential due to a number of overlooked steps of the ABM process.

DATA IS KEY

One of the biggest challenges many marketers find is accessing and aligning the right data to come toaccurateinsights. Many companies don’t feel as if they have the right data to create a strong ABM strategy. Making sure your data is accurate, usable and relevant will be the first step to creating a strong ABM plan. With robust and accuratedata, you can understand your customer’s strengths and weaknesses, recognize key accounts, segment your prospects and your customers, and align your sales and marketing teams around current and target accounts.

ALLIGNING SALES AND MARKETING

When the sales and marketing teams are aligned, closing a deal can become an easy task. It seems like a no brainer to have sales and marketing focused on the same goal, but it appears to be an ongoing struggle within many, if not most, companies. Aligning the sales and marketing teams is definitely easier said than done, but when they are aligned you will see the value it brings to your company and the revenue it can generate. To create a strong ABM strategy, you have to make sure your sales and marketing teams are focused on a shared goal and collaborating together to reach your target audience. Once the teams are unified, you will have an effective and consistent message for each target account, which is a huge step within ABM.

DATA SEGMENTATION

Once you have accurate and strong data and your sales and marketing teams are on the same page, segmenting your data into target accounts is a crucial step. When creating an ABM strategy, you need to know as much as possible about your target and current business. Gathering information like annual spend, organizational breakdown, business behaviors and duration of business relationship, will help tremendously in creating an approach. This data will be used to dig deeper into your target and current customers to find out where they are strong and where they need help, (preferably from you). You can then focus your sales and marketing efforts around this information for both current customers and target prospects.

It’s no secret that ABM can bring many benefits to your company such as gaining more market share within current clients, acquiring new customers and growing your sales while providing cohesiveness between your teams, but it is something that must be well planned and takes time to get all needed information to get started. ABM is something most companies are trying to incorporate into their business, but a solid foundation and taking the time to complete the first few crucial steps is very important to your success.

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