Top Tips for Account-Based Marketing Success

May 13, 2016 James Thomas

Top Tips for Account-Based Marketing SuccessJust about everywhere you turn these days, there’s something about account-based marketing (ABM) headlining your news feed. During the Marketo Marketing Nation Summit keynote earlier this week, ABM got a huge shout-out from Marketo chairman and CEO Phil Fernandez, who called account-based marketing “a game changer.”

With the potential to boost revenue, increase pipeline and generate higher quality leads, ABM is now a B2B marketing must-have. The latest SiriusDecisions study found ABM adoption is rapidly accelerating: 58 percent of B2B companies have a pilot or test program and 41 percent have a full program in place.

With so many CMOs determining how to build a foundation for ABM within their own organization, the articles I’m sharing this week provide top tips to achieve success.

Develop a Sales Mentality

“ABM at its best uses marketing data, technology and communications in creative ways to identify, personalize, engage and delight prospects in a focused way against a specific set of accounts. Despite good intentions, as we look at the first generation of ABM initiatives, many marketers are focused on supporting these target accounts with traditional marketing tactics — advertising, campaigns, field marketing events and the like. As single tactics, these are not wrong or bad. But they’re not what sales (or the company) wants or needs. If you’re thinking about account-based marketing, the best thing you can do is first take a sales mindset, and then apply everything you’ve learned about targeted, personalized marketing.” – Read more at Marketing Land

Create a Marketing and Sales Alliance

“Unlike traditional lead-based tactics that encourage marketing teams to focus on “getting leads” and sales teams to prioritize “closing accounts,” ABM relies on marketing and selling to a set of accounts (or segments) that sales and marketing define together. For your ABM program to be successful, your organization must commit to bringing teams together, aligning them on common goals and working hand-in-hand while keeping the customer top of mind.” – Read more at CMSWire.

Select Attractive Target Accounts

“Most ABM practitioners choose their target accounts by identifying businesses that ‘look like’ their best existing customers. This technique – known as look-alike modeling – is an effective way for most companies to select target accounts in most circumstances. However, like any business tool, look-alike modeling must be used correctly, and in some cases, choosing target accounts based solely on look-alike modeling may not produce optimal results.” – Read more at Customer Think.

Prepare One-Page Account Primers

“Create an ‘account anatomy’ framework for the basic account information required for an ABM effort, including the following:

  • Company Strategy and Priorities: What is the company’s strategy for the year and what has occurred recently that could impact those plans?
  • Current Strategic Priorities: What specific priorities are company leaders focused on right now?
  • Sales Triggers: What are the specific company needs or initiatives that will enable your sales team to “connect the dots” to a deal?
  • People You Need to Know: Who are the key players — and what do they care about?”

– Read more at Chief Marketer.

Shift from Leads to Account-Based Metrics

“Account-based marketing measurement is vastly different from demand generation measurement. From the top of the funnel to the bottom, the key metrics are different. And if you use demand generation measurement to try to measure your ABM, you’ll end up incorrectly optimizing your efforts. Proper ABM measurement starts with lead-to-account mapping. As the name implies, in account-based marketing, the primary unit is an account, not a lead. So to make the transition from lead-based measurement to account-based measurement, you need lead-to-account mapping.” – Read more at Business 2 Community.

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