That’s what we discovered at League. Founded in 2014, League is on a mission to consumerize health and benefits for employers. We started using Salesforce and Pardot in 2017. Back then, marketing and sales were disconnected, and this was impacting our overall performance in a negative way.
Our solution was to develop our first account-based marketing strategy. We saw that ABM was a huge trend, and we loved the idea of choosing a set of target accounts, creating playbooks, and personalizing marketing campaigns to help drive meetings.
Here’s how we adopted ABM at League, and the results of our ABM efforts.
START WITH ACCOUNT-BASED EVERYTHING
ABM isn’t just about marketing. It’s a joint effort led by both sales and marketing to connect with key accounts. Start your ABM journey with the philosophy that ABM is more than marketing. What you should actually be doing is account-based everything: ABE.
My sales counterpart Steve Dinner, who presented alongside me at Dreamforce 2019, first helped me get ABE off the ground as a joint initiative. Marketing and sales collaboration is the heart of ABE, and it extends across all six of these steps.
DETERMINE YOUR GOAL
It’s very important to define what you’re trying to achieve with your ABM campaign. This may sound obvious, but concrete goals are often overlooked during the planning phase. Keep it simple by picking one key metric to start, and grow your goals from there.
PRIORITIZE GOOD DATA
To maximize the impact of your ABM campaign and avoid headaches during and after launch, spend as much time as you can validating your data early on. Don’t be afraid to spend extra time triple-checking to make sure it’s right. If it’s wrong, it could catch up with you and derail your campaign.
BUILD YOUR INFRASTRUCTURE
Your ABM infrastructure will make or break the success of your campaign. If you can’t coordinate and track your efforts, you’ll never be able to prove the worth of the program, which means you can say goodbye to getting executive buy-in. When building your infrastructure, be sure to avoid overcomplicating your tool stack. A unified platform works best as a single source of truth.
CREATE A PLAYBOOK
To make sure that your sales and marketing teams continually collaborate and work toward common goals, you should develop a playbook that both teams have easy access to. Coming up with tactics to challenge and coordinate your teams can be fun. Don’t be afraid to get creative!
LAUNCH IN STAGES
At League, we were careful about diving into ABM too fast. It’s best to test the waters and launch in stages. Our first ABM beta focused on connecting with a select group of 100 accounts over 60 days, and the key metric was percentage of meetings booked. When that was a success, we opened our reps up to a new market for a second ABM beta. Finally, we launched our full ABM (or ABE, as we call it) program with tried and tested playbooks full of insights from our two betas.
Today, ABM is responsible for 80% of League’s pipeline generation. Our meeting book rate jumped from 10% to 33%, and we saw a 22x return on our ABM spend in less than a year. Also, our ABM opportunities are larger and higher quality than our old traditional marketing opportunities, and they’ve also been moving through our funnel 30% faster.
Want to get started with ABM? Start small, learn from your experiments, measure everything, and communicate your results! To learn more about League’s Account-Based Everything journey, watch our recent webinar How to Develop Your ABM Strategy in Healthcare & Life Sciences.