Account Based Marketing Best Practices
The next evolution in B2B marketing over the past couple of years is account based marketing. As opposed to a mass marketing approach, B2B marketers are utilizing this strategy to specifically target named companies and prospects with content and messages that specifically address their needs.
Account based marketing is one of the most effective B2B marketing strategies employed by B2B marketers. According to a Demandbase survey, when ABM has been in use for at least one year, 60% of users said they had a revenue increase of at least 10%. An ITSMA survey revealed that 41% of B2B marketers around the world reported they would increase their spending on ABM.
If you are planning to implement an ABM strategy, the following are some account based marketing best practices to follow:
Team up with your salespeople
When it comes to account based marketing best practices, one of the most important ones is aligning marketing with your sales team. In the planning stages, marketing and sales must meet to determine which companies to target, align on prospect pain points and issues, develop content that resonates with personas or prospects on an individual level, and put together a plan for outreach. Deciding upon key performance indicators is critically important, so you know how to measure success. While B2B marketers are in charge of delivering the right messages, salespeople are involved and ultimately convert the prospects into customers. Both teams are crucial to the account based marketing process.
Define the accounts you hope to target
Before starting your account based marketing campaigns, decide which accounts you hope to close. Look at a list of high-value existing clients and see which companies are similar to them. Then, see which competitors these companies are currently using or have used in the past. View the financial background of your accounts to ensure they are healthy and will be ready to convert at the end of the sales funnel. Examine research about the target companies, see what conferences they participate in, what they are talking about online and what business issues they are confronting. Use this research to develop messages that will resonate with prospects. Focus on educational messages that help prospects solve problems.
Examine the structure of the accounts
Once you know which accounts to hone in on, you need to identify the key players within each organization. Find out who makes the purchasing decisions and determine the business issues they face. What are their pain points? What keeps them up at night? How can you help them? When you answer these questions, you can then make contact with your prospects.
Produce content geared towards your prospects
Once you have identified the companies and decision makers to target, it is important to create content for each stage of the buying cycle. The content should educate and answer critical questions that help prospects move through the buying cycle. The content should be personalized to small groups of decision makers and can be segmented by role, industry or issue faced.
Distribute content where your prospects are
You have produced the content, and now you need to distribute it. Figure out which outlets your prospects are active with and post your content there. Become a part of the community and consistently leverage your authority. For example, LinkedIn is a leading business to business platform. 79% of B2B marketers view LinkedIn as an effective place to gather prospects. Or perhaps your prospects prefer email or text messaging. Do your research, find multiple channels that work, and customize the content for those outlets.
Measure your results and optimize
Your ABM campaigns are never complete if you do not measure your results. You need to evaluate your key performance indicators and see if you reached your goals. If you did not, determine why this happened and how you can improve upon your campaigns in the future.
Account based marketing is a valuable addition to your marketing and sales outreach programs. This coordinated outbound strategy will transform how you find and market to your prospects.
Leverage these account based marketing best practices to improve your marketing and sales outreach. Want to learn more? Contact KEO Marketing today for a complimentary consultation.
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With more than 25 years of hands on marketing strategy and operations experience, Sheila Kloefkorn is dedicated to developing marketing strategies and plans that help clients succeed. Some of the world's largest brands have depended on Sheila for marketing programs that delivered tangible and substantial results. Specialties: B2B marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, sales strategy, marketing strategy, competitive marketing strategy, social media, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), mobile marketing, email marketing, website design, marketing plans.