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Created by Spire Digital

ABM IN 2019

ACCOUNT BASED MARKETING: HOW TO GET STARTED


AN INTRO TO ABM By now you’ve probably heard of Account Based Marketing (ABM). If you haven’t, you’re missing out on what all the cool marketing kids are doing these days. Jokes aside, ABM is a marketing philosophy that focuses all your marketing activities on a set of target accounts in a particular market, rather than being blindfolded and shooting at a target in a large room. ABM leverages personalized, hypertargeted campaigns to engage each target account by using messaging tailored to the particular needs of that account.

Give people the content they care about, that’s worth reading, and makes them look good to their boss.

ABM IN 2019

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ABM is a new term, but the concept is old. The Sales and Marketing alignment conundrum has been plaguing organizations for a long time, and we’ve recently found a strategy to fix this misalignment: ABM. At Spire, we like to call this focus on Marketing and Sales alignment, Smarketing. 

And according to Hubspot, more than 60% of companies plan to launch an ABM-based campaign next year. Maybe you’re included in that 60%. If so, what’s your plan?


THE CHALLENGE(S) We’re not here to say that implementing an ABM strategy is easy, because it isn’t.

+Time-consuming

+Expensive +Complicated +Requires company-wide buy-in +Results take a while to show up

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FOCUS ON QUICK WINS

Let’s take all of those challenges and cast them aside for a minute. Think about the times you have a lot on your plate and not a lot of time to do it. The best thing to do is break things up into small action items and work through them oneby-one. At Spire, we like to take this approach with ABM so you feel capable and empowered to go all in on ABM. Sure, restructuring your entire marketing strategy is never going to be an easy feat.

But there are a few things you can get started with to ease the journey.


JUST GET STARTED

Establish your Target Account List (TAL). This is where Marketing and Sales alignment becomes critical. Sales must come up with a list of key accounts they’d like to target. Marketing must use all the firmographic and behavioral data available to come up with a list of key accounts they’d like to target. These should include both existing customers you want to expand the relationship with and new prospects. The two must come together in a room (or on a call) to review said accounts and come to an agreement on which ones to target. Executives should be included as you’ll need company-wide buy-in.

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Research those accounts. Once you’ve identified and agreed on which accounts to target, get to work researching these accounts and try to find out how they’re structured, who makes decisions, who influences decisions, what their needs are, what their pain points are and where they sit in their customer journey. This is where marketing and sales intelligence tools like Seamless.AI and LinkedIn prove useful. Let’s pause for a minute and take a moment to realize that the first two critical steps to building an ABM strategy might not be that bad. Sure, it takes time to have these conversations and do the necessary research, but these are things you can start doing right away.


IMPLEMENT YOUR STRATEGY The best ABM strategies use valuable content disseminated through the right channels. The content should focus on your target accounts’ pain points and business goals. Some strategies could include: Webinars: Webinars can be a highly valuable, customized piece of content for your target accounts. You can modify event invitations and follow-ups to attract different account contacts who might influence the buying decision. Events & Direct Mail: Your efforts don’t have to just be digital. Think hypertargeted, personalized invitations to your target accounts. This is a great time to utilize the power of direct mail to mail thoughtful invitations to your prospects.

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Paid Ads: A combination of PPC and social advertising allows you to target specific people using retargeting and IP targeting. You’ll use the information gathered about your target accounts to serve ads that break through the clutter and add value to your prospects’ daily routines.

Website Optimization: If you’re running PPC ads, social ads and email campaigns to your target accounts, you’re likely directing that traffic to your website. So it only makes sense to have a website that aligns with the content of your campaigns and is curated for your target audience.

Email Campaigns: This might be an obvious one, but email marketing is still incredibly valuable when done right. Use your marketing automation platform to curate thoughtful, tailored messages to target your accounts’ decision-makers.

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RUN YOUR CAMPAIGN It’s time to put all of your research, design efforts, design work, copywriting, etc. into action. It’s an exciting time, but you have to remember not to overwhelm your prospects with information across all marketing channels—even if it has been artfully curated for them. Start small, catch your prospects’ attention and provide them with value rather than the same messaging over and over.

MEASURE SUCCESS 40

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This is the fun part—at least that’s how we feel. Your ABM campaign has been running for a bit (let’s say three months) and now you get to see how effective it is. It’s tempting as marketers to look at vanity metrics like email opens or ad clicks, but you have to keep the bigger picture in mind of what you’re actually trying to determine.

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PRESS GO Before you begin a new ABM campaign, ask yourself a few questions: Is the content engaging? (This is where those vanity metrics come in.) How did individual prospects behave vs. how did the account behave? Did any accounts move down the funnel to sales? If so, what was their path? Did you generate any opportunities? Did you generate any revenue? And lastly, how could you improve future campaigns?

If your results aren’t as ROIgenerating as you expected, try to look at it as a learning opportunity. However your campaign turns out will give you valuable information that you can use to optimize your next campaign. Interested in talking to us about your ABM efforts? Reach out.

DIGITAL MARKETING TEAM @SpireDigitalCO ABM IN 2019

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Account Based Marketing: How to Get Started  

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