How to Find the Right SEO Partner for Your Business

PAT AHERN | July 1, 2018

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Ok, you’ve decided to begin the hunt for an SEO partner to help you scale. Now you find yourself stuck with one massive question: how do I find the right SEO partner? Finding the right SEO partner can be a challenge if you lack a strong understanding of search engine optimization. We’ve seen it countless times. A company is looking for SEO services and starts evaluating agencies to help them out, but doesn’t know where to start.

Spotlight

SiriusDecisions

SiriusDecisions® is the leading global b-to-b research and advisory firm. We deliver actionable intelligence, strategic and operational frameworks, and personal guidance from experienced practitioners. Sales, marketing and product executives rely on SiriusDecisions® to contextualize problems and bring to light opportunities to drive sustainable growth. Our holistic solutions are founded on proprietary research, a deep understanding of b-to-b complexities, and the tenet that organizational alignment brings better outcomes.

OTHER ARTICLES

Optimizing ABM with Influencer Marketing

Article | February 28, 2020

Marketers who practice ABM are seeing impressive results. A recent report from ITSMA and the ABM Leadership Alliance found that 73% of marketers plan to increase ABM budgets in the coming year, and 71% saw greater ROI compared to traditional marketing. Yet as much success as marketers are seeing with ABM, most are missing a crucial part of the strategy: Building trust through external influence. In his B2BMX presentation, Lee Odden observed that ABM marketers tend to focus on internal influence which members of the buying committee have a say in the purchase decision.

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6 Most Crucial ABM Metrics: Why & What to Track

Article | June 17, 2021

As Account-Based Marketing (ABM) continues to grow and develop into a powerful marketing strategy, the conventional question remains: How to prove and measure my results? Diving into your account-based marketing metrics to understand your results is all about asking the right questions. The metrics focus on quality over quantity. This means that looking at engagement levels above traffic volume and opportunities over leads have a close association with sales. Thus, it summarizes activity metrics and outcome metrics together. If you implement a new sales methodology without adopting new sales metrics, you’ll have a much harder time tracking the progress of your marketing efforts. That’s why the companies, shifting to an account-based framework, should update their KPIs, as these are the leading indicators of success. So, the account-based marketing metrics highly focus on the activity of an individual lead and look at crucial accounts that would likely drive the most revenue for your organization. How are Account-Based Marketing Metrics Different? The rate at which digital marketers have moved towards the ABM model by creating successful ABM campaigns is quite surprising. While many thought, ‘Will this thing stick?’ or ‘Is this just a whim that will go away in the future?’ But it’s 2021, and ABM has become even more popular in the B2B world as marketers see value in targeting accounts and not only leads. Recent research from SiriusDecisions states that 93% of marketers consider ABM extremely important to their overall organizational success. With any marketing strategy, you are going to be asked whether your campaign is performing well or not. It indeed takes time for the programs to run for any marketer who has built an ABM strategy. So, what should you consider more in creating an ABM strategy? Think quality, not quantity A team working on the ABM model understands the priority—influencing customers who matter as crucial accounts. So instead of focusing on new lead creation, ABM focuses on activating and engaging the right leads (even if it’s smaller in number). Similarly, your ABM team needs to focus on growing revenue from every single account. This means what would your team value more: ten random marketing professionals downloading a whitepaper or having a meaningful conversation with a decision-maker? It’s About Engagement SiriusDecisions states that there has been a 24% increase in the average B2B sales cycle length since 2019. It means that the larger the deal size, the longer the cycle. With such a lengthy process, you need to measure what’s happening during the progressing phase. So, how do you do that? It is engagement on which you need to focus on. Track how deeply the right account gets engaged with your brand. This way, you’ll have a measurable way of showing development in your business. Engagement in ABM results in immense benefits for most businesses. Here is a list of the latest ABM statistics that shows companies that utilized the strategy saw incredible results, such: 200% rise in ROI 50% of sales teams were more productive and able to optimize qualified leads 30% boost in revenue 66% augmented the number of leads generated 83% saw amplified engagement from targeted leads Shorter sales cycles grew by 27% and more However, such benefits of implementing an ABM strategy are only the results of a successful ABM approach, as it’s not an easy task for every organization. The only way to ensure that your business’s ABM efforts are successful is by meticulously monitoring the most important metrics. The 4 Crucial Metrics to Track Reading further, you will come across the six crucial types of account-based marketing metrics. Engagement How are your prospects get interested and engaged? The more attention they pay to your company, the more committed they tend to be. Measure the time they spend with your brand or on your website. Monitor when they respond to your marketing programs socially or when they use your product and connect with your sales team. As one of the account-based marketing metrics, the amount of engagement will be the closest and essential. Therefore, your focus should be to measure how contacts are involved with your content, including the type of content. The following areas will help you understand it deeply: Email metrics: Track the activities of your audience with your email marketing campaigns. You will want to know the open and click-through rates and look at the number of responses received from each email. Also, how email recipients are sharing your messages with others. Social metrics: You can check with contacts from your targeted accounts if they have liked, shared, or commented on your posts. Are they following your business page and social accounts? Consumption rates: Similarly, you can look at how contacts from your targeted accounts consume your online content, specifically information provided on your website and blogs. This shows several page views, average page time, and specific content being viewed and downloaded. Offline Activity metrics: Beyond your digital information, track your targeted accounts engaging with you offline. Are they attending events you sponsor, readily contacting, and responding to direct mail? Therefore, these account-based marketing metrics' primary goal is to know where your contacts are in their buying journey. In fact, through these metrics, you can uncover what information (content) your website lacks to support communications in their research. Awareness Do your prospects are aware of your company’s name and offerings? Web traffic is an ethical reflection of keeping prospects aware, specifically, traffic coming from within your target accounts. You should also track whether your contacts are opening your emails, attending your events, and contacting through calls, or using any other medium you provided. Target-Account Reach Are you able to reach specific target accounts in the right way? Where do you lack in your efforts? These account-based metrics help you to track success by channel. In case of point, in a webinar campaign, you would measure its success by analyzing event attendance. So, track the percent of target accounts that have successfully enrolled in each program as well. And, finally, track your focus. What is the percentage of all program successes coming from key accounts? This will help you understand how many target accounts reach you through your ABM campaigns, ABM strategies, and other marketing functionalities. Influence Your marketing strategy’s influence on a targeted account will be measured mainly by your interactions with each account. However, some of the account-based marketing metrics mentioned above will help check your ABM strategy's influence metrics. But the big question is whether your efforts are working or not. To understand this, you need to evaluate some parameters such as: The conversion rate for contacts in your targeted accounts Converting of your targeted accounts in the marketing funnel Frequency and volume of meetings or calls with each account With whom you have the discussions— account influencers or final decision-makers Finally, the results of your meetings These parameters will divulge what efforts are working and where you need to change your approach or the information you provide to make your business successful. Types of Account-Based Sales Metrics Marketing and sales often measure success differently. Account-based metrics can help bring these closer by aligning their focus on a specific list of target accounts. With an Account-Based Sales Development (ABSD) strategy, there are two types of metrics. These would help you understand whether your sales team is performing well in an account-based sales plan or not. Activity-based sales metrics You need to check and understand whether your sales team is doing various marketing activities in the right way or not. This will be specific for each account to be targeted and includes activities like task completion, emails, contacts per day, account coverage, meaningful conversations, and appointments. Outcome-based sales metrics It is generally considered under post-sale account-based marketing metrics. Now the time is to track the result of the activities mentioned above. Also, include the rate of accounts accepted from the pipeline created and revenue generated. In short, the goal is to measure the monetary value of each transaction and to track your performance and successes over time in business. This information is also helpful in identifying new accounts to target. To know how read through in the next! Value Measuring value is more important than your total sales volume, as it is a part of ABM metrics. The goal is to understand the worth of each account to your bottom line—how they compare to other accounts and see the performance of each sales representative. In this context, your account-based marketing metrics should uncover the following: What is your average selling point value? What is the average account sales volume? What is the swelling value of each account? What is the total sales volume? How much revenue generated? What is the value of each deal? Having a clear answer to these aspects reveals the most tangible insights into your results. By looking at specific accounts, you can measure where you are growing, where opportunities exist and show underperforming accounts. Thus, it will make your work accordingly. Retention As account-based marketing metrics measure quality over quantity, retention is one part where this comes into play. In addition, it measures the possibility of a targeted account and their satisfaction level. Measuring retention is a decent indication of the strength of your account relationships. Accounts that stay for a long term are generally satisfied. Thus, they provide the most value to your business. On the flip side, dissatisfied accounts won’t stay with you very long. But they are virtuous indicators of areas you need to change and improve — either with the process, products, or account types. ROI The most crucial account-based marketing metrics is your return on investment (ROI). Eventually, you measure your ABM campaigns and marketing strategies—if they are effective. So, ROI is the percentage of your investment to earnings. What makes these account-based marketing metrics so challenging in reality? Several factors influence each transaction or sale. Take a step back and consider these questions: Has your closure rate improved over the past month, quarter, or year? On average, how long does it take to close a sale? What was your ROI for each campaign you launched? The purpose behind considering these aspects is to know what marketing campaigns were successful and better understand inclusive marketing and sales effectiveness. Putting all ABM Metric to Work Together A successful ABM strategy requires various activities, technologies, and outlooks for B2B marketing or demand generation. Here, the use of ABM metrics becomes important for measuring pre-sale success and revenue potential. For this, B2B marketing organizations should monitor post-sale metrics to track client satisfaction. Therefore, by monitoring the entire ABM funnel, you can incessantly optimize marketing activities and improve customer relationships for your business. Conclusively, account-based strategies present an incredible opportunity for organizations to make marketing and sales more relevant, focused, and effective. However, to apprehend the benefits, it’s important to measure what matters. Frequently Asked Questions How is account-based marketing success measured? To measure account-based marketing success, here are some important ways: Understand targeted accounts and needs Regularly check content analytics statistics Account engagement Rate of interactions Amount of in-depth conversations Conversion metrics Sales cycle lengths What are excellent ABM metrics? Awareness, engagement, conversion, and outcome are some of the excellent ABM metrics. Putting them together, a business can arrive at a complete set of elementary account-based marketing metrics and attracts more customers. How are ABM campaigns measured? The value of your ABM campaigns is scaled by the lifetime value of each targeted accounts. When measuring these, elements such as customer retention, awareness, reach, pipeline velocity, and influence are responsible for making an ABM program successful. What are key metrics in marketing? 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How to scale ‘true’ ABM: lessons from the leaders

Article | July 13, 2021

ABM is Agent3’s heartland. It’s what we do best. And if you’re a regular reader of our website, you’ll be in no doubt about how strongly we feel about our commitment to ‘true’ ABM, ie, an approach that treats key accounts as markets of one. Why? Because it works: according to ITSMA, almost 85% of marketers measuring ROI say that ABM outperforms other marketing investments and research by Alterra Group backs this statistic, revealing ABM had higher ROI than other marketing activities. So when marketers come to us asking for pilot ABM programs on, say, 8-10 accounts it’s little wonder that the results we achieve soon means they’re asking us to ramp up that ABM activity to 50-100 accounts as interest in ABM within their organization is suddenly piqued. And therein lies the challenge for many. To scale a ‘true’ ABM program effectively without compromising on the key fundamentals it encompasses involves the alignment of many moveable parts: technology and resourcing are fundamental considerations, but then there’s also the decision about which accounts to include and why, and establishing clear objectives for the program. It’s not straightforward, but if this is a challenge you’re grappling with currently, be reassured by the multiple survey results available online that you’re certainly not alone. And it’s for this reason we chose to discuss the topic at last week’s B2B Marketing Ignite USA event with a panel of esteemed marketers: Carrie Feord – Global Head of ABM Industry Clusters, Servicenow, Giovanni Di Natale, senior manager, enterprise and ABM Marketing, Pure Storage and Vera Tatro, strategic account-based marketing, AMER, Splunk. It was great to sit down with these ABM leaders to explore some of these challenges and provide some perspective on how best to successfully navigate them. In the session, we covered: 1) How people define ABM at scale and where the line is drawn in terms of defining the difference between 1:few/1:many ‘ABM’ and good account-centric demand generation from Product, Solutions and Industry Marketing teams. We also discussed whether certain compromises need to be made as you pursue scale. 2) How to enable teams in the field to scale with ABM: the panel shared successes they have had as well as highlighting ‘banana skins’ teams need to avoid in terms of developing ABM resources/playbooks/templates/toolkits which can then be activated by a growing team of ABMers and Field Marketers. We also discussed ways to embed a ‘build once, use again’ mindset while still being true to the ideals of ABM. 3) Clarification of roles within ABM organisations across marketing when it comes to scaling and succeeding within ABM – the panel discussed what skillsets and roles they see as being important as organizations shift from being small-scale ABM pilots to broader programs. As you can probably imagine, it was a lively session and audience feedback would suggest we hit upon some very real challenges, so it was great to hear first-hand from the panel about their own experiences, successes and learnings. If you missed it, I highly recommend carving 30 minutes out of your day to watch, and if you have any feedback or comments, we’d love to hear!

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Improve Your Marketing & Sales Alignment With Account-Based Marketing

Article | March 20, 2020

Marketing & sales alignment is among the key factors that play a major role in determining the success of any business. Many B2B companies are starting to embrace Account-Based marketing or ABM for their overall marketing endeavors. ABM perfectly underpins the conventional, short-term marketing objective of harboring leads with strategies aimed at driving revenue growth in the long-term. In this blog post, we’ll be talking about ABM and how businesses can improve their marketing and sales alignment around it. But before we jump right to it, let’s try and understand why B2B companies must have their marketing and sales team aligned.

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Spotlight

SiriusDecisions

SiriusDecisions® is the leading global b-to-b research and advisory firm. We deliver actionable intelligence, strategic and operational frameworks, and personal guidance from experienced practitioners. Sales, marketing and product executives rely on SiriusDecisions® to contextualize problems and bring to light opportunities to drive sustainable growth. Our holistic solutions are founded on proprietary research, a deep understanding of b-to-b complexities, and the tenet that organizational alignment brings better outcomes.

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