In case you hadn’t heard yet - Account-Based Marketing (ABM) has become all the rage this year.
According to Demandbase, 71% of B2B companies are interested in adopting ABM! At its core, Account-Based Marketing takes a strategic approach to business marketing and communication. So instead of having a sales or marketing team that blankets a market with your message, you’re focusing on specific industries, companies, and/or titles that you can help.
Here at ion, we have implemented an ABM marketing model in regard to our outreach efforts and we have seen tons of success. Like any new marketing strategy, it has not been without its learning pains. So we thought we’d take our lessons learned and put together a quick list of need-to-know information to help you on your account-based marketing journey.
Know the Benefits
If you’re looking into ABM, chances are you'll have to do a little internal sell to get these practices in place. We understand!
To help you out, here are some hard facts from Demandbase’s recent report on Account-Based Marketing Adoption to share with the stakeholders at your business:
- The key benefits for using ABM are increased engagement w/accounts, better sales/marketing alignment, and better quality prospects.
- ABM usage is directly linked to better sales and marketing alignment.
- The top reported benefit of ABM by those using it is increased engagement with target accounts (83%).
- 60% of those who have employed ABM for at least one year attribute a revenue increase to its use.
Understand the Scope
Demandbase is noticing that most organizations are staffing roughly two dedicated ABM agents for every seven full-time staffers. Here at ion, our ABM dedicated staff members work in partnership with our sales team, targeting accounts for our team to approach.
Obviously, there will be some content to create with an undertaking like ABM. Before you jump into creating new content, we suggest assessing your current landscape to make sure it aligns with marketing and sales. Once this is examined, you can first look at the low hanging fruit to create content. What does this mean? Consider your accounts that are close to your core values and competency as an organization. At ion, we know our top industries where demand is high and need for what we do is acute. So we began with content for these audiences and spoke to what’s important to them – high-quality lead generation.
Want to take content even further? Consider creating content that will be used to support sales! Knowing how to best speak to the buyer audience who is actively evaluating your solution is just as important as your content creation for generating new leads.
Research, Research, Research
Research everything. Since you are more focused on an industry or specific brand, you’ll want to understand every facet of their business and their industry. This will make your content more valuable and make coaching sales a lot easier. To make the research even more enlightening, we suggest getting on the phone and listening to sales calls. You could even go as far as reaching out to your colleagues in industries you target and ‘picking their brain’. I’ve personally connected with tons of companies before writing this post on ABM.
Be prepared for account-based everything.
So far I’ve seen account-based advertising, account-based customer service, account-based content marketing, account-based selling and account-based….what is next? We should be ready for account-based practices to spread across the organization. That said, this could be as simple as the entire company focusing on specific accounts. For example, an aerospace division, where you have everything from marketing to sales and even accounts all focused on one account/industry.
Lastly, we will continue to see an overwhelming rise of ABM, which is great! This is an instance where you don’t need to be afraid to follow the crowd. Go where your ABM exploration leads you! More than likely at least one of your outcomes will be a more aligned marketing and sales team marching towards similar goals. I believe that with a deeper alignment of sales and marketing we’ll begin to see a blend of sales thinking like marketers and marketers thinking like sales. ;-)
Stay tuned to our blog this month for more tips and tricks on how your business can succeed with Account-Based Marketing.