Why Account-Based Marketing is an Effective B2B Solution
Updated: Jul 13, 2022
There are a number of things that make B2B marketing different from consumer marketing. For one, B2B marketing tends to be more targeted. You don’t market to an ultra-wide spectrum. You focus on specific industries or personas that make the purchase decision.
Second, you realize early on that not all customers are equal. In most cases, only a few companies make up most of your revenue, while a broader set contributes what we call run-rate. Many B2B organizations segment their customers into different categories – one for the bigger market with smaller purchases and another for more profitable customers.
Third, a purchase decision is more complex and often involves multiple parties and longer sales cycles.
Account-based marketing (ABM) is a strategy where marketing and sales work together to create personalized experiences for your most valuable customers. Below are some of the characteristics of ABM.
It is meant for a select few.
Marketing and sales teams need to mutually agree on which accounts qualify for ABM. Some criteria you can consider include current and potential revenues, account profitability, and how strategic the account is in terms of your competitive positioning.
It is highly personalized.
Whereas marketing campaigns typically involve promoting content or ads to a broader audience, ABM requires that you customize the content, experiences and offers based on the needs of that specific customer and the profiles of the individuals involved in the buying process.
Account planning is key.
ABM requires you to know the specific needs, motivations and goals of your clients. You must also be familiar with their decision-making process, and the groups or individuals who can influence the purchase decision. Documenting this knowledge in an account plan enables sales and marketing to tailor the right approach for them and identify potential upsell and cross-sell opportunities.
Problems that ABM Solves
ABM can help you solve the following challenges:
ABM’s personalized, white-gloved approach allows you to engage the customer in a manner that they would appreciate. Instead of simply being on the receiving end of marketing communications and sales pitches, the customer takes part in an active dialogue.
According to the Information Technology Services Marketing Association, 84% of businesses surveyed said ABM results in higher ROI. There is higher confidence in its effectiveness, and people see it as a better use of company resources and budget.
Sales and Marketing Alignment.
With both teams collaborating from account selection to defining the customer journey, ABM ensures that marketing is creating the kind of engagement and generating leads that the sales teams are prepared to convert.
Who Can Use ABM?
ABM is not for everyone, but if you answer ‘Yes’ to any or all of the following questions, then it may apply to your business:
Are you a B2B company? ABM is designed especially for B2B companies.
Are you selling high-ticket products or services?
Do you have existing high-value business relationships?
Are you selling to a highly-targeted or niched marketplace?
Does your product or service address a particular problem for an organization?
Do you have a longer sales cycle?
Do purchase decisions for your product or service often require input from several departments or individuals?
As with all marketing strategies, ABM requires monitoring and optimization. You need to have the flexibility to recalibrate, assess any points with friction, and improve.
If you’re curious about ABM but don’t know how to start, book a consultation with us.