Top-tier accounts expect superior service. Broad outreach and generic messaging doesn’t really speak to anyone and rarely hits home. Account-based marketing (ABM) targets the right people, at the right companies, with the right communication approach. ABM helps companies prioritize their marketing efforts by focusing on accounts that matter. This approach drives more closed wins and generates larger deals.
ABM is a purpose-built strategy to help enterprises land high-value accounts. It optimizes and personalizes each touchpoint along your customer’s journey and produces significantly higher returns on investment than other marketing strategies. Successful ABM programs require working closely with your sales team and a grounded understanding of your target accounts.
With ABM, you tailor your outreach to each prospect, increasing the likelihood of generating interest in your offering. In turn, this maximizes conversions and sales accepted accounts.
The ABM Process
Creating a list of high-value accounts demands a strategic approach. Launching a one-to-few email campaign requires expertise of your target audience. This means ABM marketers must know the demographics, communication preferences, most-used platforms, and other characteristics of each prospect. A successful ABM campaign includes the following:
- Precise customer research
- Strategic targeting
- Personalized outreach
- Sales and marketing alignment
The goal is to design a customer journey that is informative and helpful by targeting qualified leads who need your product or service and are most likely to buy it.
“Start thinking of ABM in terms of people and not accounts. If you manage people well, then half the game is already won.”
– Navin Rammohan, Infosys.
Putting ABM data into context
Successful ABM requires increasing the cooperation between marketing and sales teams. This symbiosis improves overall business function and productivity, using collaboration and cooperation to meet mutually agreed-upon objectives. In fact, 82% of B2B marketers say ABM greatly improves sales and marketing alignment. Connected teams drive a shared, focused vision.
According to a report by ITSMA and the ABM Leadership Alliance, 76% of marketers saw higher ROI with ABM than with any other marketing strategy in 2020. This trend highlights the potential that ABM can bring to organizations that employ it correctly and validates why so many enterprises have adopted the strategy in recent years. In 2020, 91% of companies with 1,000+ employees either had a full ABM program in place (48%), a pilot program (23%) or plans to initiate one in the following six months (20%).
In addition to growing adoption rates, there has also been a growth in budgeting for ABM programs. According to LinkedIn, 80% of marketers report increasing their ABM budgets. Those account on average for 36% of overall marketing spend and are growing 9% annually. This increase in investment in ABM is leading directly to higher ROI. In 2020, organizations saw notable business improvements with ABM in the following areas:
- Relationships (71%)
- Revenue (55%)
- Reputation/brand (34%)
Furthermore, research from TOPO shows that 80% of marketers reported improved customer lifetime values, supported by Alterra Group’s findings that 84% of marketers believe ABM is a significant factor in retaining and expanding existing client relationships.
ABM generates a plethora of opportunities for better business.
Create your ABM program
It’s never too late for B2B marketers to start thinking about designing and launching an ABM strategy. All successful, mature ABM programs had to start somewhere. Wider-reaching “spray and pray” marketing techniques are not effective for high annual contract value accounts, and prospects are more likely to ignore them. With the right data and approach, your organization can effectively target the companies that need your specific products and services. Start making the most of your marketing activities and learn more about successful account-based marketing.