Account-based marketing is a personalized, highly specific, and curated marketing strategy that focuses on a business positioning themselves as a solution for a particular company as opposed to simply mass advertising or making an effort to sell to everyone. Some of the benefits of an ABM strategy include better account engagement, longer customer retention, and more positive customer relationships. Explore the best possible ways to build your ABM strategy to maximize the success of your marketing efforts.
What to keep in mind when creating an account-based marketing framework.
For most businesses, ABM requires a shift in how organizations think about marketing and customer engagement. Here are the things to consider when building your account-based marketing framework to help shape your efforts successfully.
1. Target audience accounts
The real work begins by understanding your ideal customer. Maybe you already have identified the kinds of accounts that you work with currently that do excellent business with your organization and have helped you define what resonates with the market. If that’s the case, you can grow from there and even begin to shape your strategy using past customers as case stories. If you don’t know exactly who your target account list is (key in building your actual strategy and communications), you’ll want to start where all good marketers start: creating your ideal customer profile and buyer personas based on research and competitive analysis.
2. Sales and marketing alignment strategy
Your strategy begins by aligning the efforts and goals of your sales and marketing departments. It’s almost impossible for marketing to drive sales and create effective sales support without input from sales. What assets that marketing will create and the campaigns they’ll run need to be built to directly impact the goals of sales teams, but into many businesses, these departments don’t communicate to this level. ABM requires better communication and strategic alignment between the two groups.
3. Data and technology
Account-based marketing relies to some degree on effective technology platforms and definitely on good business data. What platforms will best support your efforts? A customer relationship management tool is key. This helps track all interactions with accounts from what marketing effort has created engagement to who the contact person for the account is to what their purchase history contains and even how many phone calls have been completed and how long they were.
4. Account planning
With the right tools, like a CRM, you can complete a good amount of account planning. This helps you understand how to approach each account and work alongside marketers to create the content and materials that will be most effective in communicating with that customer. An account who has recently ordered, for instance, will require a different sales and marketing approach than a customer who’s never heard of the business.
5. Account offers
One thing to consider in your account-based marketing framework is how to differentiate yourself from your competitors. Incentivizing accounts with product promotions or offers for webinars and presentations are a great way to personalize your marketing efforts.
6. Channels and promotions
You’ll also want to strategize about the publication channels of your marketing. This will definitely depend on which accounts you’re trying to reach or prioritizing. In some cases, targeting specific businesses with a drip email campaign or using direct mail might be a good approach, while trying to break into an industry that contains target accounts might be better accomplished through brand awareness building on social platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn.
7. Metric and analytics
Finally, you’ll want to establish what metrics you’ll use to gauge a successful strategy. Analyzing engagement, sales, and lead generation will be key to understanding the effectiveness of your account-based marketing.
Creating a successful account-based marketing framework can help elevate your ABM strategy and give you the best results possible. Consider all of these pieces as you move forward with implementing or refining your ABM efforts.