Part 2: How Does ABM Work?
Now that you have learned in Part 1 how important Account-Based Marketing can be to your business, let’s discuss how it all works. You may have decided that ABM is right for your company but you’re unsure on how to go about implementing it.
Let’s start with the basics:
- Identify your target customers and personas
- Create personalized content and messaging
- Measure success, revisit & repeat
1. Identify your target customers and personas
Selecting the right accounts to target is the first step to setting up your ABM process.
Define who your best customers are today – the ones you want to clone. Everyone has them. What makes them different? Is it a certain perspective or understanding? Wish you could have more of them?
A great first step is looking at your customer data from your CRM and identifying what segments are producing the most outcomes. Having your customer success teams weigh in on this process will help it align to what your specific drovers are in your business.
It is beneficial to understand how your sales team is conducting outbound and who they are targeting. Most outbound strategies include cold calling or using automated outbound email tools. BDRs usually take a more mechanical approach as they try to meet quotas, while account executives often experiment using custom outbound processes including networking and other tactics to gain traction. When different teams have separate goals and tactics, it can be difficult to align messaging or positioning between sales and inbound marketing messaging.
When sales and marketing work together it will create more efficiency. When evaluating your current clients to identify your best accounts, this should include:
- Current and past clients
- Current and past clients’ competitors
- Companies who have been visiting your website
It may also be helpful to determine similar qualities between your clients such as, industry, company size, location, annual revenue, upsell opportunity, profit margin, and more.
For ABM, you are marketing to the whole company rather than to an individual – like the CEO. What is common amongst customers that have purchased from you? Selecting specific companies to target within your ABM strategy helps coordinate efforts and align messaging directly to your specific customer segments – increasing relevance and engagement. By identifying and defining clear segments in your target market you can then start building Ideal Customer Profiles (ICPs), and then identifying target personas within those companies.
Our proprietary RenderLab process utilizes a data-first approach to identifying your target accounts. Once defined we can utilize different markets and/or verticals to create relevant ABM playbooks that increase engagement and therefore improve output.
The next step is to begin creating comprehensive ABM campaigns and content specifically made to target these companies. With more specific content and titles, you are going to get more engagement. Create clear and concise messaging to educate your audience on how you solve their specific problem(s).
Brand positioning, content, creative and landing pages are key assets in running any successful ABM playbook. The goal of the process is to create an experience that makes the target prospect feel as if they have found a company that “gets” them. To do that all your assets need to feel as if it is made just for them. Choosing and understanding your positioning is key, being relevant with a perspective while aligning content for each ICP. When you are presenting an old or a new idea, the more relevant and personalized the solution is to your audience the higher the probability of greater response rates and outcomes. So repurposing older content like blogs, white papers or infographics can save time and money if you are reworking them with the right audience in mind. Another trick is to just sell some existing content but with the creative, lead in, and landing page customized for the target ICP.
Another important aspect of ABM marketing is choosing the best channels to share your campaigns and content. Creating campaigns and sharing them to channels that none of your targets use is a waste, so it is important to understand what platforms your target organizations are using and where they are engaging with content. From LinkedIn to email, YouTube to vertical specific marketing channels – the possibilities are endless. Identify where your customers are and how best to reach them on those specific channels. Video? Case Studies? Paid ads? The key is to test, try and test again until you identify the right formulas.
The trick to successful ABM is coordinating messaging, content and channels to build a hyper-relevant experience for your target customer. If our positioning is correct then we have built an experience that surrounds our target accounts with the right information at the right time that helps increase relevance and effectiveness of both sales and marketing efforts.
The end game is alignment to our target audience to drive more sales and expansions. Measuring the success of your ABM campaigns is slightly different than measuring your traditional campaigns. Once you’ve aligned your teams, set targets and ICPs, gathered content and come up with a plan to implement, the last step is to set your KPIs to measure the campaigns in your CRM.
Metrics like clicks and impressions become less important because you are now targeting a smaller, but more specific group. So, it is now more important to look specifically at what types of companies are looking at and engaging with your content, and how best to follow up and nurture the leads for each of your markets and verticals. It is key to have the right tech stack in place to measure your goals in a scalable, manageable way (more about that later).
With ABM, you may be reaching a smaller crowd, but you are more likely to gain new, higher-value clients by reaching the right person, at the right companies, at the right stage in the buying process with focused, personalized campaigns.
Want to learn more? Download our White Paper
At RenderTribe, our RenderLab process helps you identify the unique pieces that fit your marketing strategy and align your plan with overall business objectives. We help build the foundation for measurement, expertise, and the tactical execution needed to support the plan.
Let us help you grow your bottom line. Contact us today.