Like it or not, account-based marketing is the new normal for B2B lead generation. Marketing to businesses used to begin with prospective clients coming to your website after the launch of a marketing campaign—all with the hope that they’ll fill out contact forms so that the sales team has leads to go on. Next, out go a slew of emails and calls which hopefully give more insight into these organizations to determine if they are qualified leads—which isn’t always the case. It’s a bit like showing up on a first date with an engagement ring and a deed to a starter home, only to be crushed when they run away screaming. Not only did you not make an effort to get to know this person, but you also made assumptions that they would be on board with what you had to offer.
How ABM Works
Account-based marketing (ABM) turns the tables on traditional B2B marketing by first getting to know prospective clients. It’s important to remember that not all ABM campaigns are created equal and each one is its own recipe. Understanding needs, pain points, and other factors help to determine right away if this business is worth going after. To properly get a command of ABM, you need to determine what companies best suit your services. ABM is a holistic practice which means factors like industry, company size, revenue, location, etc. all need to be put into consideration.
In order to drive successful ROI for a B2B marketing campaign, the following areas should be considered as a part of the overall ABM Strategy:
Aligning Targeted Accounts with the Right Channel Mix: Different marketing channels whether it is programmatic, social, etc. have their own unique abilities to target audiences (e.g. by department, by job function, etc). Aligning the marketing messaging to the right audience on the right channel for each account is critical in driving higher levels of engagement.Now that you’ve segmented your accounts, you can enlist tools like Terminus’s ABM platform to build customer personas and deep-dive into data from your Salesforce account to hone in on where a potential client may be in the buying cycle. From there, you can send out the appropriate tailored messaging across relevant channels to get your name front and center.
So here’s how an ABM platform works:
Let’s pretend that you’re a plumbing supply company and want to get the attention of every single plumber in the Philadelphia area. The ABM platform uses business data and matches the IP addresses of every Philadelphia-based plumbing company that visits your website, which is then integrated into platforms like Salesforce. Meanwhile, marketing can get a grasp of the needs of those potential customers and create campaigns that are driven by user behavior on sites like LinkedIn.
Marketing and Sales Team Alignment: Whether it is identifying the Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) or creating account lists, having a collaborative approach from the top-of-funnel marketing activities to conversion/lead qualification with sales teams is important to make sure that the marketing strategy aligns with the sales outreach and pipeline goals. Now, inbound marketing is still important for B2B lead generation, but ABM encourages marketers and sales teams to align which in turn expedites closing a new account.
Optimization and Reporting: Providing clear reporting at the account level within your CRM allows for marketing and sales teams to see the real-time performance of ABM campaigns and provides the data needed to make informed decisions on how to optimize campaigns over time. By keeping sales and marketing on the same page, both departments can work in sync to maintain an appropriate message while also building relationships with chosen industries. However, it’s important that these departments remain flexible. Not every marketing campaign is successful, so plan to pivot as needed. ABM is not a set-it-and-forget-it practice, it’s all about nurturing and taking care of an entity that is subject to change at any given moment. Be sure to also keep a record of which methods yielded success and which ones didn’t, as you may discover a formula for success for specific industries.
ABM in the COVID Era
With more and more businesses operating on a work-from-home basis, companies are under intense pressure to become more efficient when courting a new client. Face-to-face interactions have been replaced by Zoom meetings and business travel is limited (or non-existent). This, in turn, has caused a severe amount of rationalization for travel and entertainment expenses. Pre-ABM, it was easier to wine and dine a prospective client regardless of their interest in your services because you had no way to track the majority of their interactions on your website. Now, travel and entertainment dollars go to those that actually deserve your time and money because you know they are engaging positively with what you have to offer.
ABM puts sales and marketing together to identify the right audience and the appropriate times to reach out. Combine a marketer’s creativity with a salesperson’s personability and you have a match made in heaven. When you marry sales and marketing, you don’t get a disjointed mess, you get an arsenal of heat-seeking missiles for targeted accounts. On top of this, you get more mileage out of your accounts because you took the time to get to know the wants and needs of individual prospects.
How Chartis Helps with ABM
Here’s a real-life ABM situation concerning one of our clients, AnyClip. This is an organization that provides the first video AI-powered platform for video management, marketing, distribution, analytics, and monetization that is totally automated, centralized, and streamlined. With so much competition swirling within online video management platforms, AnyClip needed to dial in accounts that would generate a solid amount of ROI.
The Chartis team was tasked with targeting accounts across both enterprise and SMB clients in order to promote AnyClip’s brand awareness and provide personalized messaging on how their solutions differentiate themselves in the field. We were able to evaluate the latest ABM platforms and recommend a solution that aligned best with their business needs and MarTech infrastructure. After leading the setup and integration, we successfully launched over 18 ABM campaigns across multiple channels and have increased marketing engagement and CTR to their website—leading to an increase in overall lead conversions.
Chartis is here to help you iron out a strategy that ensures sales and marketing are aligned to see the scope of your current state of capabilities. Next, we’ll assist you in choosing a third-party data collector to determine where you want to cultivate potential customers. Chartis will be at the helm of the industry-leading ABM platforms like Terminus on your behalf. Because the Chartis team is skilled in analytics, we know how to prepare, implement, and operate the best practices in ABM. Take the guesswork out of lead generation and let Chartis make your ABM initiatives work for you.