Over the years, I have been a marketer since 1976. There have been many improvements in marketing practices. First, we saw the rise and development of digital marketing over traditional offline marketing. We then visited the rise and success of digital marketing via social media. Then came marketing automation technologies. These have replaced the human task of marketing. A recent trend, Account-Based Marketing (or ABM), is beginning to take root. This has the potential of changing everything for B2B marketers.
How have B2B marketers historically market
B2B marketing campaigns are intended to assist B2B sales staff with their selling efforts. It includes all aspects of internal collateral, including inbound marketing and content marketing. Outbound marketing also provides search engines and public relations. Trade marketing at events and related media is another example. For a refresher, re-read the article I wrote about B2B Marketing basics.
This technique was used to make every person interested in your product or services aware of your company. You may narrow down companies within an industry, but not all companies are created equally. Perhaps you should focus your efforts on companies with high revenue and can afford your product/service or those located in a specific geographic region. This means that you may waste a lot of effort and money on this campaign.
For example, you could use a local service or company to promote your business. This means that this campaign may result in a lot of wasted effort and spending.
What is ABM, and how does it differ?
ABM is a complete rewrite of this model. The basic idea is that you tell me what top company accounts are essential to you, and I will set up a marketing campaign only to target those people/accounts. Your marketing budget is 100% targeted at these accounts, so there’s no waste. And hopefully with greater automation than a human team calling those accounts manually.
ABM could save company money by replacing outbound salespeople with cheaper ABM marketing campaigns, automation technology, and inbound order takers. This works exceptionally well for B2B businesses with more specific products and lower price points. ABM doesn’t require direct selling to nurture enterprise clients who purchase complex solutions with long sales cycles.
ABM Best Practices
The following are essential components of an effective ABM campaign. A good list of targets is necessary. Experian and other services like D&B, Acxiom, or Hoovers can help you identify the right people/contacts in the right industry. These individuals will have the correct characteristics to make your business successful (e.g., size of revenue, geographic location). Here’s the key: we target specific people and not specific companies.
The fun part begins once the list has been built. Once you have the email addresses, you can upload them to your Google Advertising account. Google will target advertising to those individuals if they are allowed emailers. This applies regardless of which websites they might be visiting (assuming they are part of the Google Ad network). You will create email campaigns and automate nurturing for these people using just 6-7 content elements. InMail will enable you to create your LinkedIn advertising and then connect with the people. You’ll target the same people on Facebook. Etc. Your target contacts can’t miss your advertising message because they will see it everywhere on the internet, possibly increasing the chances they will want you to work with them.
It is important to remember that your message should be tailored to the user. You should, for example, create a unique set of content for each channel you sell through (client direct, their agency, and different departments). It’s even better if you can make it seem like you’re speaking directly with the person–their company and role, their needs.
You can either manage your ABM efforts yourself. Many agencies specialize in ABM. These include Ignition Iron Paper, Yesler, and KEO Marketing. Square 2 Marketing, The PMG Company, and OBO Agency. Momentum ABM is another option. You can also use several ABM technology platforms (e.g., Triblio. Engagio. Everstring. Inside View. Terminus). Although I have not done extensive research on all of these companies, I suggest doing your research before engaging with them.
Restaurant Furniture Plus Case Study
Restaurant Furniture Plus is a seller of furniture to restaurants. Google leads were 100% required by the business. Google does not have quality control. It is impossible to know if the click is going towards a consumer, single-location restaurant, a chain, or another type of customer. They are small, growing chains that have the greatest need for a service similar to theirs. The company only bought a third (33%) of its ad clicks. Or, to put it another way, 67% of the company’s ad dollars were being wasted on products they don’t need.
ABM allowed the company to target small-growing companies and save money. The average order size of the company increased while reducing the number of small orders from one location. The company is now seeing its business become more efficient as it doesn’t require as many transactions to bring in the same amount of revenue. The company is seeing its repeat revenues grow as smaller units are opened every year. This is a significant improvement over a single location which is “one-and-done.” Please tell me which marketing channel is best, with or sans ABM!
ABM marketing strategies are becoming increasingly rare in today’s B2B market. You should review your current sales strategy, execution, and overall marketing efforts to determine if ABM could help you save money and time with your go-to-market plans. ABM may help you save time and money. It will be interesting to see how ABM technology and demand develop over the coming years. But there is no time like now to become an early adopter.