ABM in Marketing
Account-based marketing (ABM) is diametrically opposite of traditional marketing. Instead of targeting all kinds of customers with generic content, it targets only the most lucrative accounts using personalized content. This concentrated targeting results in more conversions, longer business associations, expansion, and account retention.
In an interview
with Media 7, Clive Armitage, CEO of Agent3, said,
“If you are not utilizing the power of data, technology and content then you are failing to be a modern marketer.”
ABM leverages firmographic data (basic info), technographic data (data about the kind of technology the lead uses), intent data (lead behavior), and engagement data (data gained through form filling, and event attendance) to target accounts and segment them based on priority.
A 2020 benchmark study by the Information Technology Services Marketing Association (ITSMA) found that 76% of companies reported a higher ROI with ABM than other marketing types.
How Does ABM Contribute to Revenue Growth?
ABM drives higher ROI and measurable sales using marketing campaigns created by both sales and marketing teams.
A successful ABM strategy has components like these:
Targeting the right accounts and managing them
Measuring and dynamically optimizing the ABM programs using specialized dashboards to map targets, programs, and revenue metrics created by an account-based marketing software
ABM helps scale business revenue in the following ways:
Shows a Clear ROI
Businesses prefer precise results from their marketing strategies. ABM prioritizes ROI. It gives the highest ROI compared to any other B2B marketing strategy because it targets the highest-value accounts that meet defined criteria through custom campaigns addressing their needs and pain points.
Helps with Resource Allocation
ABM focuses only on high-value accounts. Consequently, companies can allocate their resources better and save time and money.
Engages the Audience
Personalized content means targeted accounts see only the content they can relate to so there is increased engagement and interaction.
Can Be Tracked Every Step of the Way
can be tracked every step of the way, so there is a clear idea of what is working and what isn’t. Important metrics include ROI, engagement, awareness, target account reach, and influence.
Aligns Sales and Marketing Teams
ABM aligns sales and marketing teams by helping them find common ground for their goals and objectives.
5 Must-ask Questions about ABM Strategy Implementation
Account-based marketing questions about ABM technology and strategy arise when businesses transition from traditional lead generation techniques to ABM. The following five must-ask questions about account-based marketing can be the keys to transitioning to ABM:
How to Create an ABM Strategy That Works?
To create an ABM strategy that works, follow these steps:
Define your target accounts.
Identify the key decision-makers of your target accounts.
Personalize your content to cater to your target accounts.
Choose appropriate channels to approach your target accounts.
Formulate campaigns to engage the target accounts.
Measure the success of your campaign using correct metrics.
What Things Should You Consider Before Allocating a Budget for ABM?
It is pretty challenging to find the correct answer to this question. The cost of tools, channels, and individual items keeps varying. Money spent on-field events, content creation to cater to target accounts, ads, trade shows, research, and intent data collection factors into budgeting.
To make budgeting easier, consider bifurcating the expenses into categories like technology (CRM, marketing automation systems, and data management platforms), human resources (data analysts, social media associates, and content strategists), events (one-on-one meets, trade shows, and webinars), media campaigns and direct mail.
How to Decide on the Size of the Target Accounts?
The size of your target accounts depends on your business goals (acquisition, retention, expansion), team size, and initiatives on an organizational level. Tiering accounts into three categories using data, technology, and thorough research has worked out for several businesses.
Tier 1: These are the accounts that fit your ideal customer profile (ICP) bill perfectly and have high strategic value.
Tier 2: These accounts have an excellent ICP but lower lifetime value.
Tier 3: These accounts meet only some criteria of ICP. Pursue these accounts but don’t go overboard to get their business.
What Metrics Should Be Used to Map ABM Success?
The biggest advantage of an ABM strategy is that its success can be measured. To measure this success, you need to focus on important KPIs like:
Engagement: This includes email metrics, social metrics, consumption rates, and offline activity metrics.
Awareness: This KPI measures how aware your target accounts are of your brand, how credible they think it is and how they respond to it.
Influence: Measure how your ABM campaign contributes to the lead conversion rate, and increase the frequency and volume of your lead interactions.
Target Account Reach: With the help of ABM tools, this KPI measures the percentage of the target account’s engaged decision-makers.
ROI: Mapping ROI is essential for assessing the success of an ABM strategy. ABM gives better ROI as compared to other marketing strategies.
Other metrics to consider are value, customer retention, and sales metrics.
Who Should Be on the ABM Team?
To begin with, your ABM team should have leadership that knows ABM and its implementation. Key decision-makers from the marketing, sales, and operations departments should be on this leadership team. It should work on setting goals, overseeing the implementation of the ABM strategy, and mapping its success.
How DocuSign Used ABM to Increase Their Customer Engagement and Sales Pipeline by 22%
“We have more awareness and educational content that’s reaching our non-engaged accounts. And we will dedicate a lower level of spend to that program so that we are prioritizing our spend on our more engaged accounts.”
- Perri Gardner, Director of ABM, DocuSign.
By using ABM to target high-value accounts and categorizing their spending based on the value of those accounts, DocuSign increased their customer engagement and sales pipeline by 22%.
Transitioning from a traditional marketing strategy to account-based marketing is vital to drive ROI, engagement, brand awareness, and influence. Correctly implementing an ABM strategy contributes to revenue growth through quicker lead conversions, proper allocation of resources, and a targeted approach.
What is the first step in implementing an ABM strategy?
The first step of implementing the ABM strategy is to define the accounts you want to target.
Is ABM better than a traditional lead-based marketing strategy?
Yes. As of 2021, 70% of marketers are using ABM and are seeing a remarkable increase in their ROI.
What does an ABM strategy depend on?
An ABM strategy depends on high-quality intent data. Content personalization, account segmentation, and lead nurturing cannot be achieved without it.