Drive account growth with an omnichannel ABM strategy
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Right now, your large accounts are researching various solutions and evaluating your products and services online, anonymously.
They are the empowered B2B buyers of the new digital age.
Tech-savvy and discreet about their personal information, they rarely give out their contact details and prefer to engage with sales representatives at the end of the buying cycle, when they have probably already chosen their preferred supplier.
In addition, B2B buyers no longer make individual decisions. Rather, they are usually part of large buying groups of no more than 30 people, making it difficult for sales teams to reach consensus.
And it is not just your business that they are looking for. Vendor content online has exploded, and members of the buying group can now access a wealth of information about your competitors and their offerings. Once they start comparing specs, features, and functions, it’s too late to shape their thinking.
All of this can lead to a customer failure that includes key accounts ignoring your new strategies, solutions or product lines; the CEO’s brand story is not heard; and customers being confused.
All of this, in turn, can lead to a collapse of internal marketing: impending budget cuts, marketing becomes tactical, and even sales take over the marketing function.
Responsibility for Marketing in the Age of Digital Shopping
Most B2B organizations are still focused on sales. Even in high-growth organizations, CFOs often make it a rule to allocate only 20% of the total sales and marketing budget to marketing.
It made sense when sellers controlled 80% of the buyer’s journey. However, now that sales have lost much of that control, marketing teams have a responsibility to step in with new account-based digital marketing (ABM) technologies.
Account-based marketing can help make the transition to digital selling.
Forrester, Gartner and thousands of ABM practitioners agree that a digital accounts-based approach is now the most effective and profitable B2B marketing strategy.
With ABM, businesses can …
- Align marketing and sales teams around priority accounts
- Engage large buying groups throughout the buying journey
- Alert sales teams with actionable insights
The approach results in higher sales success rates, shorter sales cycles, and larger transactions.
Getting started with omnichannel account-based marketing
For many B2B marketers, getting started with ABM seems complex and overwhelming.
Let’s take a look at some common questions new ABMs ask.
How to select our target accounts?
The selection of accounts depends on your sales growth strategy: earning new net accounts or expanding your current accounts.
For an ABM ânew net accountâ strategy, Bring your sales and marketing teams together to identify and prioritize a list of candidates for target accounts. IP-based account analysis can help you prioritize your list of target accounts. For example, you can rate your list of key accounts based on anonymous and known account activity on your website, advertising, and email marketing, and use it to prioritize which accounts are most likely to be affected. ‘to buy.
For an ABM “account expansion” strategy, use the 80/20 rule to focus on the top 20% of accounts that are already making 80% of profits. Then use the intent scoring methodology above to identify the fruit at hand.
Which marketing channels work best?
A modern digital ABM program works best with an omnichannel approach, which includes the following channels:
- IP display
- Facebook and Instagram
- Website personalization
Each of these channels has its strengths and weaknesses and can generate significant engagement from target accounts. However, the full power of ABM is realized when all channels are orchestrated to work together at the account level, delivering a consistent account-based experience across all channels.
What message should we send and when?
Winning target account buyers means engaging them on the right channels, with the right message, at the right time. But what is “right” depends on the stage of the buying cycle.
I recommend breaking it down into three stages: delivering messages, resources, and offers specific to each stage as part of a planned sequential journey.
- Step 1: Awareness. First, generate overall brand awareness and deliver your CEO’s message to members of the large account buying group. Always on account-based IP display advertising is a great place to start: direct your target accounts to your digital assets, such as your website, blog, and social pages, before they even have it. started their buying journey.
Then introduce âchallengerâ messages to highlight the weak points of your target accounts. Get them to recognize and internalize a problem they didn’t know they had. Here, account-based IP display advertising, email and website personalization, and account-based retargeting on Facebook, Instagram, and Google are effective.
Monitor reach and engagement to make sure your target accounts see and engage with your post.
- Step 2: Consideration. Next, educate large accounts on how other businesses have resolved those same issues. Incorporate the more expensive LinkedIn marketing, offering an informative asset such as a downloadable case study or a free webinar.
Continue to monitor reach and engagement, as well as asset downloads, registrations, and meeting requests.
Guide their journey as they search for solutions. Offer a white paper, then use more targeted messages to present your products and services through data sheets, virtual showrooms, etc.
Convince them it’s time to have a conversation with your sales reps and track the number of meetings scheduled and open opportunities.
- Step 3: Decision. Continue to deliver messages across all channels, reminding key accounts of their problem and highlighting your business differentiators, value, and expertise. You’ve guided your accounts through the buying cycle, and you’ll start to see more closed opportunities, bigger earnings, and higher revenue growth.
And remember, the job doesn’t end there. After-sales, promote your relationships with key accounts with IP ads and emails based on “always-on” accounts. Submit surveys, blog posts, customer newsletters, new product launch news and product upgrades.
Ultimately, ABM with Omnichannel Sequenced Messaging is the best way to help your key accounts buy from you and reach them where they consume their content. But with omnichannel, many B2B marketers struggle to bring all of their marketing data together at the account level. This is where it is essential to have an ABM platform with account-based analytics. Look for a system capable of delivering account-based website analytics and integrated marketing engagement from leading marketing and advertising platforms.
Using an integrated omnichannel ABM platform, your sales and marketing teams can monitor peaks in purchase intent signals and gain a competitive advantage by winning business with large accounts.
What kind of expertise will we need?
Running a successful omnichannel ABM program requires a wide range of skills. You will need everything from strategy, planning, creation and writing to account mapping, advertising operations, email marketing operations, management of social marketing campaigns, and more. .
Because there are so many implications across multiple channels, many B2B marketers choose to use a Managed Service Provider (MSP) to complement their internal teams. Consider selecting an MSP who has deep industry experience, global reach, and the expertise to apply best practices at every stage of your ABM program.
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With the right ABM strategy, the right technology, and the right team in place, you’ll be well equipped to engage and grow revenue in your target accounts.
Ready? Now go sell to these big accounts.
More resources on account-based marketing
Enterprise ABM: five common pitfalls and tactics to avoid them
How the pandemic affected account-based marketing
Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Account-Based Marketing (But Were Afraid To Ask): Samantha Stone on Marketing Smarts [Podcast]