Account-based marketing (ABM) is a B2B marketing strategy that concentrates resources on a specific set of customers or target accounts within a market. It utilises campaigns comprised of highly personalised 1-to-1 experiences and content, which are designed to fully engage each account, with the marketing message based on the specific attributes and the needs of each account.
Benefits of Account-Based Marketing
Although ABM takes a more holistic view of marketing, going beyond mere lead generation tactics, it isn’t a complete replacement for broad-based marketing plans and strategies. It actually works best when run in tandem with strategic broad-based marketing campaigns targeting top accounts.
ABM is especially useful when you’re attempting to engage multiple buyers in the same organisation that you haven’t tapped yet. With such a goal in mind, ABM offers several benefits:
- It’s highly personalised to your target audience.
ABM targets key decision-makers within a specific organisation. It, thus, ensures that your marketing campaigns are tailored to resonate with your intended audience. With marketing campaigns that are designed to cater to a broad audience, it can be difficult to make each individual feel that their unique needs are being addressed. That’s understandable, as the larger your audience is, the more types of users you’re trying to engage.
Although the audience in an ABM campaign is narrower, it enables you to personalise your marketing messaging and content to a more focused array of individuals.
- The potential Return On Investment (ROI) is easier to identify.
A typical challenge marketing departments are often faced with is that of attribution, which is the task of correlating your marketing campaigns with new revenue and growth. However, it’s much easier to attribute your marketing campaigns’ success to corresponding revenue that it led to when you’re marketing to prospects for a business that you already have an existing relationship with.
For instance, let’s suppose you ran an industry-level ABM campaign with a $700 budget for 3 months to target small to medium-sized businesses in a specific city. By the end of the campaign period, your salespeople closed 5 new clients, each worth $1,200.
It stands to reason that your ABM campaign was instrumental to generating over $6,000 in new revenue, but without the right attribution reports, it would be difficult to prove on paper. With an ABM campaign, you can easily illustrate how your marketing budget is being spent and the new revenue you expect to acquire upon campaign completion. Such transparency gives decision makers within your company more confidence in your marketing strategies, and will inspire them to increase your marketing budget and resources to enable you to deliver ever-increasing results.
- Avoid wasting time on campaigns that don’t produce desired results.
Aside from ensuring that your campaigns yield a pre-defined minimum ROI, ABM also helps you eschew allocating too much of your time, budget, or resources to campaigns without a clear business value.
With ABM campaigns, you can ensure stability for your department, in the event of a slow quarter or seasonal drop in the levels of engagement from wider audiences. In a manner of speaking, ABM acts as an insurance policy of sorts for you and your marketing department.
- Shortening your sales cycle.
It’s a given that a major component of marketing is lead generation, and that includes handling leads that just won’t convert, for one reason or another. Typically, the sales department performs prospecting to filter out such leads from their pipeline, when they’re unresponsive to their outreach efforts. ABM mitigates such an issue, leaving salespeople with more time to focus on leads that are more likely to convert.
ABM tends to generate more qualified leads, since your target audience is more likely to be comprised of people who are interested in hearing from you. When your sales team is able to spend more time grooming qualified leads, this shortens the time between the initial call and the new sale.
- Strengthen existing relationships with clients.
ABM helps strengthen your relationship with an existing client by enabling your teams to connect with more people across the organisation, and delivering bespoke content that’s designed specifically to address their needs. In this manner, you can increase the likelihood that the customer will renew their contract with you at the end of the year.
- Align your sales and marketing teams.
In any given organisation, the sales team will typically request better leads, while the marketing team will emphasise the need for more visibility to the customer, so they can continually optimise their strategy. In an ABM campaign, both teams are innately aligned. The sales team gets qualified leads that fit their ideal client profile, while the marketing team knows who they’re marketing to and how to engage them.