June 16, 2020

Tips & Tricks: How to Succeed with ABM

Written by

Account-based marketing (ABM) programs account for more than one-quarter of B2B marketing budgets, and research shows that businesses that stick with ABM see their results continuously improve. ABM is more than a trend; it’s a proven way to grow your business with new and existing accounts.

We asked our ABM experts at TechnologyAdvice how they help marketers get the most from their campaigns and turn ABM programs into sustainable pipelines that grow revenue. Here are the tips and tricks they shared.

The List is Just the Beginning

There is a lot of focus on building a list when it comes to ABM, and rightfully so. But never forget that the list is just the start of the process. Are you prepared to run a full-fledged marketing program targeting the accounts on the list? By that we mean:

  • Do you have the content and resources to send to accounts that appear to be in the later stages of the buying process?
  • What about industry-specific campaigns targeting accounts in healthcare, financial services, manufacturing, or other areas?
  • Are you familiar with your competitive differentiators?

As we’ll see shortly, TechnologyAdvice can help you segment your list using technology install data, in which case you’ll want messaging ready to go for accounts that are using solutions from your competitors.

ALSO READ: What Does ABM Mean for the B2B Sales Funnel?

How Well Do You Know Your ABM List?

Your target account list is the foundation of your ABM program, but how well do you know it? ABM experts want to know as much about your list as possible so they can help you build a successful campaign.

In fact, they use a fairly simple worksheet with the following questions to help gather information about ABM lists.

Who is on the account list?

  • Prospective customers
  • Existing customers
  • Prospective & Existing Customers
  • Other

Are the companies in your target account list within the same… (check all that apply):

  • Industry
  • Company Size Range
  • Geographic Location (North America, Europe, APAC, Latin America, etc)
  • Other (please specify)

Are there different groups within your target account list that we should market to differently?

If yes, do you have marketing materials specific to these groups?

  • Yes
  • No
  • Yes, I already have assets/creatives for these unique groups.
  • No, I need materials created to address these groups.

When was this list last updated?

  • Are you actively marketing to this list? If yes, how?
  • Are other vendors marketing to this list? If yes, how many?
  • What is your follow-up strategy for these leads?
  • How will this campaign be measured?

Gather More Intelligence on the Accounts on Your List

You have your list, you have your partner(s), and now it’s time to unleash the power of marketing on your target accounts. But why stop there? Account-based marketing revolves around data, and when you put that data to work, it can do wonders for your list.

We work with our clients and our partners to unlock the potential of ABM lists. We can include industry-leading intent data to help us prioritize accounts. We can also expand your list by using data to identify lookalike accounts that can be added to your list. Now you’re growing your list and creating new opportunities for your sales team.

Go After Your Competition

TechnologyAdvice can target companies with competitive installed technology using data. This allows you to create yet another new segment of your ABM list and target these accounts with messaging that helps you differentiate your offerings.

The combination of intent data and install data create a powerful opportunity to customize your messaging so it addresses the specific needs of the audience. When this customization is used in your program and in your own marketing efforts, you’re truly able to surround and engage the audience with a message that speaks directly to them.

With Measurement and Optimization Come ABM Success

There are a number of ways you can measure the success of your ABM program, including:

  • Number of total opportunities
  • Percent of pipeline coming from target accounts
  • Percent increase in close rate
  • Percent increase in average deal size
  • Increase in funnel velocity

Regardless of the KPIs you’re using, avoid the trap of running an ABM program for one quarter and then moving on. Because ABM revolves around data, you’ll find new opportunities to optimize the campaign and grow your list as the campaign goes continues.

An always-on ABM campaign that runs over an extended period of time will allow you to constantly prioritize the accounts on your list and respond accordingly. The activity around the accounts will change over time as accounts make purchases and leave the market, while new accounts enter. Anytime your campaign goes dark, you risk missing opportunities to influence your prospects.

This content originally appeared on QuinStreetB2B.com. TechnologyAdvice acquired QuinStreet B2B in February 2020.