Account-based marketing, which the cool kids call ABM, is a strategic approach to marketing, the crux of which is highly targeted communications to specific priority individuals or accounts.
Here is ITSMA’s definition:
“Treating individual accounts as a market in their own right”
A structured approach to developing and implementing highly customized marketing campaigns to markets of one, i.e., accounts, partners, or prospects. This approach involves marketing and sales taking a close look at key business issues facing the target, mapping them to individuals, and tailoring campaigns to address those issues.
It can be a very powerful approach, especially if you’re trying to penetrate an enterprise or larger organization with a service or B2B offering (which we know can be challenging). Since you typically target fewer priority accounts, high conversion rates are vital, and there’s a whole science (with some art mixed in) to selecting the right accounts. Maybe that’s a topic for my next post!
Here are some tips and tactics to consider as part of an ABM strategy—and as always, gleaning insights about your audience, testing, and using multiple channels are going to be key for success.
- Grow your understanding of account-specific pain points: Do the necessary research and investigation to uncover what challenges your target accounts are experiencing that are relevant to your services or solutions.
- Develop prospect-specific offers: Since relevance and personalization are so crucial in an ABM program, and typically you have a smaller quantity of accounts/individuals included, consider creating offers specifically for a given target account.
- Use retargeting to keep your company and brand in front of target accounts: This can allow you to repeatedly engage with your audience and eventually win them over.
- Personalize the account’s experience on your website: Create landing pages with customized greetings and tailored content for your targets.
- Use direct mail: Especially if you’re targeting high-level executives who get bombarded with emails and are difficult to connect with through other common channels. You could consider doing a larger, experiential package for a whole department within a company to create some buzz and excitement.
- Mention target accounts in blogs and social posts: Be sure to tag them to grab their attention and draw engagement.
- Invite your audience to VIP events: Dinners and parties can provide valuable face time in an enjoyable atmosphere. Make sure you’re prepared ahead of time with insights and an understanding of the account so you can have meaningful, targeted conversations.
- Look for unexpected connections to an account: Use the tools on LinkedIn to try to uncover an “in” that may not have been on your radar, especially if they aren’t in the role or department you typically target with your communications.
- Assess and iterate: As you deploy communications, analyze what works well and what doesn’t, and keep your campaign agile. If something isn’t delivering the results you expected, role with the punches and adjust.
Please reach out with questions!