B2B Marketing’s Global ABM Conference
For those not yet familiar with ABM: don’t worry, we wrote an article about this very topic not that long ago!
About a fortnight ago the amazing ‘B2B Marketing’ organisation organised their annual Global ABM Conference. The previous edition of this 2-day conference was, as so many other events, cancelled due to COVID-19. This year, however, BBC was invited to once again participate in this marvelous meeting of like-minded marketing masters. It wasn’t business as usual though, as the whole event was hybrid: all the interviews, talks, workshops, etc. were recorded and broadcasted live so ABM-marketeers at home could join in on the fun.
Thomas and Wout – Project Manager and Digital Marketing Expert – at BBC went on a mission.
This is what we’ve learned:
Status of ABM today
The host of this event, ‘B2B Marketing’, surveyed over 100 client-side B2B marketers, enquiring about their current state of affairs regarding ABM. They were so kind as to share their findings with us:
- 82% say they will increase their ABM activities. Especially via digital channels, thanks to COVID-19.
- 58% of these marketers use ABM to win new accounts, 32% use ABM to grow existing accounts and 6% want to accelerate the sales cycle. Only 4% hope to retain their current accounts with ABM.
- Most marketers spend between 10% and 30% of their marketing budget on ABM and are planning to increase the strategic (1:1) ABM programs.
- 16% of the interviewees said they are considering ABM, while 28% are preparing a specific campaign. 30% are already delivering but want to improve their way of working. Only 6% said they have almost perfected their ABM strategies.
Long story short? There is a lot of room for improvement throughout the entire ABM-industry.
6 Golden Rules of ABM
If there is one thing we’ve learned at the conference, it’s the fact that ABM is a natural approach to B2B marketing & sales. It’s simply the most logical approach to doing business in a B2B context because nothing speaks to your target audience like custom-made and personalised content.
That being said, the following 6 rules are no less important when it comes to developing a successful ABM campaign.
- Executive sponsorship is a must
- If not everyone is on board, the campaign is bound to fail. Get everyone excited for this project. Work your way down: start convincing the top execs to buy in. This makes convincing the rest of the team way easier.
- Have the right budget and resources
- A wise man once said: “No money, no party”. All jokes aside, if you don’t have enough resources to develop an ABM campaign, it might be better to hold off until you do.
- Find the right people with the right ABM skills & experience
- Don’t build an ABM team, let your entire team be ABM-ers. Just make sure to assign a few in-house experts that can guide them and show them the best practices.
- Creativity, enthusiasm and relevancy are key
- Do not be afraid to outsource when necessary. There is nothing wrong with using specialists (actors and script writers for example). You can’t be good at everything after all.
- Everything’s possible! Be creative and think outside the box.
- The pilot is the learning phase, you can re-use your content and strategies in a later phase
- Start small by selecting 5 target accounts in the pilot phase. You can always scale-up after, based on feedback you’ve received previously.
- Don’t be afraid to collaborate
- You have a direct line with the sales team. Talk to them. Use them to gain insights.
Long story short: ABM isn’t exactly the easiest or most accessible form of marketing. But the ROI can be huge, which makes it all worth taking a chance.
Still in doubt? Drop by one of the BBC offices or send us a COVID-proof email and we’ll gladly help you along with your custom ABM trajectory.