You already know that ABM is a strategy like no other, and that it can give you some truly brag-worthy results – but there’s a lot to be said for exactly why account-based marketing can generate such big returns for B2B marketers. If you joined us for Mathew Sweezey’s webinar ‘Getting Started with Account-Based Marketing‘, then you’ve got a pretty good idea of what makes ABM so powerful, and if your’e new to the concept, it’s also a great place to start.
So. On to today’s topic. One of the things that stands out to me now that ABM is at the forefront of B2B marketing, is the way that marketing itself has changed in that last few months, years and business cycles. With more decision makers involved at each stage of the buying cycle, and more channels, marketers are working harder to connect with prospects. Enter account-based marketing: a strategy that targets prospects by company with strongly personalized marketing. Is it any surprise that marketers who practice ABM are seeing success?
That’s what makes account-based marketing something special. With the right tools and technologies in place, it can address many of the touchstone issues that B2B marketers face when trying to connect with prospects – from how to personalize to sales and marketing alignment. Here’s how.
1. Delivering a Personalized Customer Experience
Customer experience has emerged as the central metric in the quest for better B2B marketing. With consumers across the board more educated than ever, B2B marketers have had to find ways to connect with them besides just offering information. Buyers want a better customer experience – we know that, but what we might not know is just how account-based marketing can provide it.
ABM scores major points on customer experience because it is essentially about connecting with customers through personalization. In order to market to a single specific company, you’ve got to build in a distinct message. What that message will be should depend on the pain-points that your solution addresses. In ABM, personalization isn’t an afterthought – it’s part of the strategy from the beginning, and greater personalization leads to a better experience for your customers.
2. Uniting Your Sales and Marketing Teams
You’re probably thinking ‘yeah right, there’s no way ABM actually makes this easier.’ But honestly, it does. An ABM strategy effectively breaks down the silos between your marketing and sales teams, because it has to. There’s no room for poor communication and workflows when significant portions of your revenue are coming from just one account. Both teams become responsible for metrics like Revenue and ROI, and transferring leads becomes a cyclical process instead of a linear one. That last part is the important one. When account-based marketing gets your sales and marketing teams working together, leads will flow from marketing to sales – and then back again, from sales to marketing.
Wild right? But with the help of tools like marketing automation, your sales team can send leads back to marketing that need to be nurtured to a more sales-ready state, and for ABM, that’s awesome. It means that if you get a bunch of leads from your key account through to sales, but your key decision maker in the bunch isn’t ready to talk business yet, sales can send that prospect back to marketing to be warmed up a bit more.
3. Becoming a Data-Driven Marketer
Data-driven marketing is one of the most important methods of driving success for your business. It means using your data to inform your marketing decisions and ultimately, meet and preempt the needs of your clients and prospects. Account-based marketing relies heavily on data – it’s how you navigate through the process of marketing to an entire account, and it’s what keeps your sales and marketing teams on the same page.
Engagement, brand awareness, and lead quality make up a huge part of how you guide your ABM strategy. These metrics unite both your marketing and sales teams around common goals – for example, increasing brand awareness among prospects in a new key account. With both teams working together, the buying cycle becomes streamlined. Marketing can create the content and messaging that will best position your brand and pass it to sales. Sales can then take it into the field and see how it resonates with customers. As the data comes in, sales can pass that feedback back to marketing who can compare it to their own success metrics for the campaign.
This kind of marketing is a big deal, so if your’e still not sure how ready you are, check out our checklist of tools and techniques that you’ll need to get started, and join Meredith Brown, Sr. Director, Product Management at Salesforce for her webinar presentation: Introducing Einstein ABM: Bringing AI to Connected Sales, Marketing, and Service.
Have you tried account-based marketing? Let us know in the comments!