Account based marketing, or ABM for short. It has been a hot topic since I’ve started my journey at BBC. I will never forget the first ever business trip I took to the ABM conference in London. For the past year I have broadened my knowledge about the ABM strategy and what it represents.
One question stuck with me all this time: is ABM not just smart marketing?
Flip the funnel
The biggest difference between ABM and “traditional” marketing is that you reverse your approach. Traditionally, as a marketer, you try to attract prospects that later can be converted into leads with the help of sales – the famous MQL to SQL funnel.
ABM takes the sales qualified lead as your starting point: you identify the companies, and mainly the decision makers, that are most relevant for you.
Next you create campaigns that are tailored to their specific needs and characteristics. Keep on massaging them with specific messages until they are ready to buy.
Within the B2B environment, achieving this is no small feat. You’re dealing with longer sales cycles and the number of decision makers keeps on rising (even 6.8 according to the most recent studies). To design a personalized experience for all those people seemed impossible.
But, just like technology enabled the B2C marketeers to design personalized customer experiences, B2B is getting there too. Combined with strong research practices (LinkedIn is a very good place to start), tools like Idomoo and Sigstr make it possible to tailor content to specific individuals.
It is important to note that these tools are useless without a well thought out plan.
Is ABM just smart marketing? No, but it is a part of the modern marketeers’ bag of tricks. Try to use this strategy, where you chose your ideal account and tailor your message, in combination with lead generation and SQL-funnel.
And take the learnings on personalization and technology to your other campaigns.
Now thát makes your marketing smarter.