Join us in September for our 3-part series on Account-Based Marketing:
- What is Account-Based Marketing?
- How Does ABM Work?
- 5 Strategies for Successful ABM
Part 1: What is Account-Based Marketing?
“87% of marketers that measure ROI say that ABM outperforms every other marketing investment.”
– ITSMA Research
Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is much more than just a buzzword or marketing trend. ABM is a highly-targeted marketing strategy that drives revenue by aligning sales and marketing – an ideal match for B2B and SaaS companies. Research has shown there to be numerous benefits from implementing this strategy – the most notable being that there is a clear return on investment.
So, what actually is ABM? Let’s start with the basic breakdown:
1. ABM is all about FIRE.
ABM starts with who you are specifically targeting with your product/services and why. FIRE is a relatively well-known acronym that refers to the four-pronged model of ABM success:
- Fit: knowing who your relevant accounts are and how your company solves their unique problem
- Intent: knowing which of your target accounts are actively researching or buying your product/solution so you can prioritize these accounts
- Relationship: knowing which accounts have the deepest relationship with your company and why
- Engagement: creating engagement with the right people (or personas) at the right accounts
When implementing ABM, the focus is on connecting with customers that are the best fit for whatever you’re selling so you turn them into engaged customers. Bottom line – be more mindful about who you’re targeting, how you’re targeting them, and why.
2. Sales and marketing alignment is key.
In order to run a successful account-based marketing strategy within your organization, sales and marketing teams have to work together. It is a collaborative way of targeting the right audience with the right message at the right stage of the buying process to help cut through the volume of marketing and sales noise – that your target audience is being bombarded with daily.
Let’s say for example that your potential client has a team including a CTO, CFO, CEO and a couple of mid-level managers. Each person has a specific “persona” – a specific background and position that informs their requirement for your product/service. The CTO wants to know about the technology, the CFO about cost. The managers may have teams below them that they need to train – they need ease of use.
Just as the people are different, the way we market and sell to them is different. When sales and marketing are both working toward the same goals, activities align to the customer buying journey. ABM is all about identifying who they are, what drives them, and how sales and marketing can target these potential customers at each stage of their journey at the right time, in the right format, with the right message to answer their need for your product or service.
3. ABM builds awareness.
We are all customers. Every day we are berated with emails, advertisements, commercials, robocalls. It’s exhausting and very easy to get sick of seeing the same wording, marketing tactics, and annoying pulls to get us to buy something. Instead, an approach that teaches and educates is more likely to drive results. Why? We only remember so much at once. If a company teaches us something or builds awareness on a relevant topic, we are more inclined to remember them, and eventually purchase from them. The same is true when it comes to ABM – focus on educating and informing your target accounts with information that is relevant, timely and useful to them wherever they are.
4. Say hello to better account engagement.
What matters with ABM is engagement. As Demand Gen Report says, “ABM requires that you flip your funnel upside down, so only the most qualified, ready-to-buy channel partners are getting your attention. Instead of focusing on lead numbers, figure out what your engagement goals are.” Whatever your marketing tools or technology, at the end of the day, engaging with your target accounts is the number one priority, and any tools you have available should only complement this approach.
5. The goal is sales, not leads.
From selecting the best technology to supporting sales reps with winning content, it’s all about finding the best building blocks to help your business, and team, grow revenue. All in all, when you shift your focus to analyzing customer engagement and therefore the actual effectiveness of a campaign in terms of revenue, it’s much easier to understand and draw conclusions from a small, focused set of targets.
We understand it can be scary to change how you think about and approach sales and marketing workflow, but ABM doesn’t need to be complicated. With the right strategy, tech stack and message, you can deliver highly targeted campaigns to meet the needs of your potential clients and win more business.
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.