In marketing and in sales, the more specific and personalized your approach to a prospect or customer you get, the better results you are likely to achieve. Every customer wants to feel important, and that's what makes AMB's personalization strategy so effective.
Account-based marketing or ABM is a B2B growth strategy that combines marketing and sales efforts to target and convert high-quality prospects into customers. It aims to improve the lead conversion ratio and shorten the sales cycle by focusing on a few quality prospect accounts and building a lasting relationship with them.
To reach their revenue goals, organizations need to seek out high-value customers and an ABM strategy to help attract and identify these opportunities.
How an ABM approach differs
The traditional marketing approach aims to target a general pool of leads in order to appeal to as many prospective businesses as possible.
With ABM, teams choose which prospects to target by assessing if these fit within one of their company buyer personas and guiding and interacting with them in a way that caters to their specific needs.
As prospects move from one phase of the buyer's journey to another, marketing and sales have the opportunity to personalize their messaging and obtain data that can help determine what is working and what is not.
Today's technology makes it easier and more affordable to help scale and grow a business. With an account-based marketing initiative that is founded on the idea of aligning marketing and sales, your business can learn to generate more qualified lead conversions. By placing a high importance on ROI, you can use data to make sure your business's resources are used to its maximum capacity for optimum results.
Marketers implementing ABM strategies typically focus on providing a high level of personalization in their interactions with potential customers to showcase the advantages of working with their business.
Why ABM is important for your business
Account-based marketing allows marketing and sales teams to align to pursue and personalize their interactions with prospective companies they consider are "high value" and significantly benefit the company.
By weeding out prospect accounts that may not necessarily be a good fit for your organization, your team can design processes that are effective in engaging, educating, and delighting prospects.
Darren Litt, co-founder of Hiya Health, explains the importance of personalization for B2C businesses.
"The trend of personalization continues to be a driving force in marketing strategy. Consumers have come to expect personalized experiences across channels, and brands must continue to implement data-driven personalization into their communications strategy at every level. Brands like Amazon, Starbucks, and Netflix get the most from consumer data by creating a customer experience built around each user's unique personality.
Campaigns that hone in on what matters to your customer base will continue to build that priceless loyalty needed to maintain a competitive edge. To master personalized messaging, you have the power to speak to each unique customer with one process aided by automation."
By personalizing the customer journey, marketing can provide quality prospect accounts and together with all communications, content, and marketing campaigns to those specific accounts. With this, sales can generate new customers, increase revenue, and incentivize customer retention and loyalty beyond the customer's first purchase.
Common issues ABM addresses
Successful ABM initiatives help boost business revenue and optimize marketing and sales efforts to reach set goal.
As a bonus, ABM strategies can provide leadership with data information that would be difficult to acquire if marketing and sales were not working in achieving common goals.
Problem #1: A deficient ROI
ABM centers on increasing a business's ROI to ensure that all resources invested produce favorable results.
To evaluate this, it is essential to clarify which goals and objectives marketing and sales teams need to meet.
Problem #2: Misuse of time and budget resources
A business that does not use the resources they have available to the fullest cannot grow with an ABM-based focus.
When measuring the return on investment (ROI) for every marketing and sales strategy put in place, it is important to test and optimize every attempt at personalizing a customer's experience for the greatest return.
Problem #3: Not enough engagement From your target audience
Personalized communication is central to account-based marketing.
When marketing and sales make an effort to lead a prospect down a customer journey that is customized for them, 80% of customers are likely to purchase a product or service.
Problem #4: Not knowing which metrics you should be tracking
An ABM focus simplifies the way businesses evaluate what works and what does not.
An ABM-friendly CRM or ABM tech stack can help assess and track the progress of how each targeted prospect account responds to the personalization tactics it receives.
The best metrics to pay attention to should measure the direct impact that marketing and sales have on your lead conversions. This way, you can track and measure changes over time to allow your team to identify data patterns.
Data you collect should include account-specific data such as ROI, impressions, engagement level, overall brand sentiment, and conversions.
Problem #5: Your marketing and sales teams are not aligned
Every successful ABM initiative starts with aligning your organization's marketing and sales goals, the strategies used to achieve these, and the metrics to assess ROI.
When marketing and sales adopt the same mindset regarding the best way to delight their prospect accounts, it is far easier to evaluate ABM success.
RevOps and its relationship to ABM
Revenue operations brings together an organization's marketing, sales, and customer success teams to create an interdisciplinary and well-rounded approach to business operations. It ensures that a company's strategies and objectives align across departments.
The alignment of its resources allows an organization's planning, technology, and data to come together to maximize business performance and revenue gain.
By streamlining their customer experience, companies can make sure that every touchpoint a prospect has with their brand is seamless and personalized. When this is the case, a high-quality lead feels more inclined to trust the company, which down the line could develop into customer loyalty.
RevOps drives ABM success
RevOps and ABM's stark difference lies in which teams work closely together and the primary focus of this unity.
As we have stated before, revenue operations center on the cooperation between marketing, sales, and customer success. These customer-facing departments should be uniting forces to provide prospects and clients alike a positive and personalized experience.
Customer success needs to be included in the RevOps equation because if it is not, companies risk losing the customers they work so hard to win over and retain.
Erdin Beshimov, Senior Director at MIT Open Learning and founder of MIT Bootcamps, shared his insight on the role of cross-departmental alignment.
"The key to aligning sales, marketing, and operations is understanding very deeply the problem that you're solving for the customer and the core of what makes your solution valuable and different.
Without this understanding, there is only chaos and mayhem. The reason for that is that business alignment is a systems-building process. And systems are built on the understanding, and ultimately, alignment of priorities and constraints. It is essential to understand and communicate very clearly, what you are not going to do as it is to decide what to do.
So start with answering the essential but necessary questions about the problem–what causes it and what it leads to, what are its emotional and economic dimensions, what solutions exist today, and why there are inadequate–and then articulate how you're going to solve it in a superior and sustainable way. And when you've done that, your business is ready for alignment."
On the other hand, ABM unites sales and marketing to attract and retain the interest of quality leads. It customizes a prospect's journey to their needs and aims to convert these into paying customers.
ABM's unique focus is on assessing whether the strategies sales and marketing use for prospect conversions are effective or not. That is why it primarily measures ROI and not revenue.
Depending on the organization and its ABM goals, sales and marketing teams could measure revenue as one of their objectives, but it is not always certain.
A company can adopt both a RevOps and an ABM initiative; these are likely to be successful to the degree that the revenue team aligns with the operations team in charge of running ABM.
To get these two initiatives to work together and complement the other, it is important to use the same software to measure metrics and performance. When you can align your revenue goals with your data on ROI, the ABM strategies put in place have a better chance of proving successful.
Driving your ROI upward
In today's business environment, everything is connected. Organizations are founded and grow, innovative tech is created, and new strategies are developed, tried, and perfected.
To stay on top of the competition, marketing and sales are required to consistently line up in the way they communicate and address their prospect accounts.
This way, your team can easily measure its return on investment for each prospect they invest resources and time into. Once you nurture and delight prospects, you can come to understand the type of clients and the strategies that work and are ideal for your business.