B2B marketers have a tough job. They’re responsible for creating the content and marketing approach that will connect with another business and help to get all business stakeholders on board with investing and using a particular product or service. This can be trickier than reaching B2C customers or end users. One way to do this effectively is through account-based marketing, which HubSpot says, “a particularly useful for organizations with multiple buyers or stakeholders. Part of its goal…is to address the needs of the organization by connecting with all of the stakeholders within it.” That’s why it’s often the perfect fit for B2B marketers.
What is account-based marketing?
According to Marketo, an automated marketing software company, account-based marketing, or ABM, is defined as, “Account-based marketing (ABM) is an alternative B2B strategy that concentrates sales and marketing resources on a clearly defined set of target accounts within a market and employs personalized campaigns designed to resonate with each account. With ABM, your marketing message is based on the specific attributes and needs of the account you’re targeting, hence the name account-based marketing.”
Because the marketing content and engagement strategies are so much more specific and personalized, tailored to each business account, this marketing method is more expensive and time-consuming to implement, but it also tends to generate more ROI. Customer relationships benefit from personalized attention and strategy based around specific account needs.
How can you run an effective account-based marketing campaign?
AMB is extremely important for some businesses and creates immense value across for the organization if done well. But where do marketers need to focus their efforts, energy, and budget to create the engagement they need to move the needle? Here are the top tips for running an effective ABM campaign.
- Identify your accounts: First, you have to identify the target accounts. This is usually a combined effort between sales and marketing teams, as ABA campaigns greatly increase overall marketing goals and sales alignment. Identifying the right accounts will take into account the projected or estimated potential ROI.
- Research accounts and define goals: HubSpot recommends treating each account like an “organizational-level persona” and becoming as familiar as possible with the stakeholders within the organization as well as some understanding of the company structure and history to be able to more accurately and specifically address challenges for that business.
- Create content: At the content level, it’s important to remember that content needs to solve for organizational-wide pain points, like hiring and retaining talent or safer, more reliable cloud computing access. It also means creating content for multiple personas within in an organization, like leadership and facility manager audiences.
- Execute: Once you’ve defined what channels you’ll be publishing and promoting content with – social media, email, direct mail, etc. – it’s time to pull the trigger and put the content into play in the marketplace. The biggest thing to focus on here is to make sure that you have your target audiences well defined that content will be reaching the right people at the right point in their buyer’s journey. Buying audiences within B2B marketing audiences are more limited than B2C, and you don’t want to send repetitive or conflicting content to the same buyers.
- Measure and optimize: Ultimately, your efforts need to reflect in your bottom line, but all the methods that apply to analyze other marketing efforts – from click-thru rates to time spent on site to calls generate – all add to the necessary analysis that goes into measuring your ABM campaign success. You can tell if you’re reaching your accounts if the numbers show more engagement and increased sales. If certain elements of the campaign aren’t performing – like emails – you can fine-tune the campaign elements to redistribute budget and effort.
ABM campaigns have the potential to make a big impact on your sales and marketing efforts. Making sure your research is thorough and goals well defined is how to ensure that you have maximum reach and effectiveness.