We know who benefits from account-based marketing, but what challenges must be overcome to reap the rewards of a successful ABM strategy? Strong leaders are willing to strike out on a new path and ready to do whatever it takes to get their teams on that path alongside them to achieve the best results.
But what, specifically, will make that path easier to travel?
1. Getting stakeholder support
This is the big one. For an ABM strategy to be successful, you must have stakeholder buy-in. Before implementing ABM, educate all relevant stakeholders and leadership on why ABM is the right strategy for your go-to-market plan and how you’ll measure results. You’ll likely run into resistance from leaders who lack ABM experience, don’t understand the value of adjusting your metrics, or don’t like change and are uncomfortable moving forward with anything other than what’s worked in the past. When making your proposal, be prepared with facts, data, and research that demonstrate the value of ABM. Bring in an ABM expert (like RenderTribe!) who can show their success with the strategy. And be sure to create a timeline that includes milestones for the plan to ensure everyone knows what to expect and when to expect it.
2. Treating ABM as a strategy, not a channel
Treating ABM as just another new channel means you risk sabotaging your campaign’s success before it even begins. ABM is an omnichannel strategy designed to drive pipeline movement by targeting quality accounts instead of relying on producing a large number of leads. Organizations that treat ABM as one more (in what’s often a long line of) tactic run the risk of creating a struggle for resources within the marketing department as they work to prove the effectiveness of this new strategy against traditional lead gen channels that are proven to be less effective.
3. Unifying your sales and marketing teams
Traditional lead gen strategies encourage marketing and sales teams to become, at best, siloed and, at worst adversarial. According to Adobe, leads are 67% more likely to convert when sales and marketing teams are aligned. Everyone wants to create more pipeline growth, so be sure your sales and marketing leaders share the exact expectations and priorities with their teams. One tip to get things aligned? Schedule regular meetings with those teams to allow them to collaborate, share success stories, and make suggestions on how to make the buyer journey more efficient.
4. Identifying your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)
The foundation of every successful ABM program is its Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). And who better to help you discover it than your newly unified sales/marketing team? Defining your organization’s ICP can be challenging, but it is crucial to the success of your strategy. Many ABM campaigns fail because their ICP needs to be better defined.
Your ICP describes the company (not the buyer or the end-user) that requires your product or service. Once you’ve figured that out, the research that will help you to create that targeted account list begins.
5. Getting the KPIs right
Educating and then unifying your sales and marketing behind your ABM strategy allows you to identify which metrics demonstrate its effectiveness. Throw out traditional lead gen KPIs and replace them with metrics like:
- Target Account Coverage: to be sure your campaign reaches your target accounts.
- Engagement: a well-created ABM campaign with highly personalized ads and content should reveal a high engagement with those target accounts.
- Influenced Pipeline: determining which content and ads are best at creating opportunities.
- Pipeline Velocity: so you know how smoothly your deals travel through your sales process.
Overcome Your ABM Challenges
Looking for a partner to help you move these challenges out of your path? RenderTribe is an ABM-focused agency with experts ready to help convince your stakeholders, design your strategy, unite your teams, and measure your results.