How to Create An Effective Account-Based Marketing (ABM) Strategy?
In the realm of B2B marketing companies experience a lot of pressure. The market has become competitive as never before. Moreover, today with all the different frameworks and marketing automation tools available, it’s hard to know which one will be right for your business. However, for campaigns that need to target a very specific audience and establish key relationships with decision makers in the organization, account-based marketing (ABM) is probably the most effective B2B strategy today.
ABM focuses on heavily personalized strategy from both sales and marketing departments and includes insight-driven campaigns that are focused on building strong client relationships. The primary goal of such an approach is to drive business growth through building relationships with a very targeted set of key accounts. Account-based marketing is not a new idea but rather a reimagining of an old, almost forgotten, strategy. In recent years, due to the rise of social media and outreach platforms, there was a great switch towards quantitative marketing. Personalization is a reverse marketing targeting: Instead of you searching for the right prospect, you make a message right for the prospect.
ABM is a great investment for SMB-type companies with smaller marketing budgets and it is definitely a great asset for larger businesses that wish to diversify their marketing activities. 97% of marketers report that ABM has a much faster and more reliable ROI when compared to other campaigns. However, in order to succeed in account-based marketing, you need a solid strategy and near-flawless implementation. That is why we have prepared a list of the 5 most crucial tactics that will help you to launch your first pilot ABM campaign.
Top 5 ABM Tactics
Define Criteria for Your Target Accounts
In any marketing, defining goals and criteria for success is paramount. Unfortunately, this is where a lot of companies make mistakes. Without a clear understanding of what you are trying to achieve with ABM, you set yourself to fail at the very first step.
Typically, the goal of account-based marketing is to increase brand awareness and gradually build relationships with key figures in your target audience. Therefore, your first metric should be the number of valid accounts in your database, as well as their parameters such as location, company, revenue, etc.
This is the very top of your sales funnel for ABM with which you can start filtering those accounts into prospects, which is the second metric. Next, based on historical data you can evaluate your desired and actual time-to-close, as well as average deal value.
Create Prospect Exclusive Offers
Personalization is the name of the marketing game. And it applies to ABM like to no other campaign. In a typical account-based marketing campaign there is a very small number of target prospects because each and every offer is developed to maximize conversion rates.
Apart from personalizing the content, you can specifically tailor your business offer to target a given account. The chances are good that if you are targeting a company in the healthcare sector, the offer that includes HIPAA compliance will have more chances to grab the prospect’s attention.
Also, in case of email marketing and sales outreach, a representative of a targeted company will be more likely to open and read your email if the name of their company is in the subject line. But you should never use this tactic if you don’t have very specific and personalized information. Otherwise, you risk penalization by spam filters.
Organize A Role-Based Contact List
Another form of personalization that you should consider is targeting specific people in the company. This account-based marketing approach requires you to have a solid contact list.
You should aim at creating lists based on role or responsibility, as this will allow you to build ABM models with right contacts. The name and title very often do not tell you enough about a person and his or her role in the company. With a solid database, you can search for roles such as “people in charge of new software implementation”. Obviously, knowing that little piece of information you can start developing content that will be beneficial to them, rather than guessing.
Of course, such an approach takes more effort from your sales department. However, there are third-party vendors who specifically can create and manage such a database for you.
Launch a Direct Mail & Gift ABM Campaign
We all live in the digital age and direct mail is not at the top of your priorities. However, implementing a smart ABM direct mail campaign can separate you from the crowd.
The trick here, of course, is to not overdo it. To be completely honest, today just by looking at your website with the eyes of your potential clients, there isn’t much difference between you and your competition. And direct mail can be a great opportunity to set yourself apart.
If you want to take your ABM direct mail campaign to the next level, you can implement software tools such as Rocket Notes. With such a tool, in just a few clicks your sales reps can deliver one-of-a-kind named gifts for prospects and clients.
Machine Learning (ML) & Predictive Analytics Enhancements
Creating high-value content for every single visitor can seem extremely challenging at best. However, today advances in big data and machine-learning technology can deliver you strong and actionable insights.
There are certain tactics you can implement to leverage data in your account-based marketing campaign.
- Account intelligence: With ML you can more easily create reliable databases and structure each individual account.
- Shared data between departments: Shared data can be a great asset in aligning marketing and sales departments by creating a single source of information. It’s a simple and yet very powerful ABM tactic.
- Data tracking: By tracking and measuring your progress against solid criteria you can implement data-driven strategies and improve your ABM B2B approach over time.
Create Your Own Account-Based Marketing Approach
Account-based marketing is all about making the most of every opportunity and it can play a key role in acquiring high-value prospects. Of course, every business will need to adjust the ABM strategy to fit their individual requirements. By clearly defining the objectives of your ABM campaign and measuring its success against your business goals you can make reliable forecasts.
Today the spendings on advertising are all-time high, and yet more marketers reports poor outcomes of traditional marketing. ABM has the potential to change that for your business and build high-value client relationships.