What is Account-Based Marketing (ABM)?

It’s every marketer’s wish to start the sales process with high value accounts. This means not wasting time engaging unqualified leads. All you have to do is engage and delight your prospects.


If you’re dreaming about this kind of efficiency, then you want to tap into account-based marketing (ABM) that lets you eliminate less valuable customers from the onset. This ensures your lead gen efforts are aligned, so your sales reps spend less time to engage and delight them.


By leveraging ABM, you’re able to communicate better with high value target accounts. This, coupled with personalised buyer journeys and communication that is tailored for specific accounts, guarantees you a boost in customer loyalty and greater return on investment.


In this article, we cover everything you need to know about account-based marketing.

What is account-based marketing (ABM)?

Account-based marketing (ABM) looks to focus B2B sales and marketing campaigns on target accounts within a specific market.


Further still, Account-based marketing is a growth strategy that focuses on the collaboration between sales and marketing teams ostensibly to personalise the buying experience for high-value accounts that are mutually identified.

Account Based Marketing Strategy

You need a sound strategy for your account-based marketing to approach to yield results. Here is a step-by-step guide to creating and implementing an effective and efficient ABM strategy:


  1. 1. Create a synergy between the sales and marketing teams

The alignment between your sales and marketing teams is vital if you’re to succeed in your implementation of account-based marketing. You’ll gain customers as leads through a sale so you can create a custom buying experience and a seamless transition. You must focus on clear communication to improve collaboration between both the sales and marketing teams. This will ensure marketing teams gain leads the sales team can sell to successfully.


  1. 2. Identify your personas

The alignment of marketing and sales teams isn’t enough. They also work together to target the right personas. This starts with research aimed at identifying the right accounts to pursue. Some factors to consider during the identification process include the vision, mission and objectives of the ideal customer, high-value accounts that are already engaging your inbound approach, revenue model vs spending patterns, the stage of business maturity, growth trajectory and company size, the platforms and tools the ideal customer is using.


  1. 3. Establish account plans

Sales and marketing teams must work closely in mapping out potential leads they’ll attract so they can reach the target accounts. They also must produce content they’ll use to engage the target audience.


  1. 4. Attract contacts linked to the target accounts

Leverage inbound strategies to attract contacts that are linked to the accounts you’re targeting. Find out where your contact looks for solutions relating to the services you offer and ensure your company is visible in these places.


  1. 5. Involve the buying committee

You must ensure marketing and sales teams engage the people involved in decision making. The sales teams with support from marketing teams will usually champion this.


Once you have an account-based marketing strategy, your sales and marketing organisations will repeat the process each time they need to attract or keep high ticket customers.

Benefits of Account-Based Marketing

ABM is popular among B2B companies targeting larger accounts. It also offers many benefits for companies that want to sell to large account even though they have large deal sizes and long sales cycles.


  • • Alignment of sales and marketing

ABM encourages collaboration between marketing and sales organisations in identifying target accounts, create custom campaigns and work together in aligning and moving individual accounts along the sales pipeline not only before but also after conversion.


  • • Personalised marketing

Marketers don’t use a generic approach rather, they focus on creating personalised messaging for target accounts.


  • • Short sales cycle

Major purchase decisions usually have a lengthy sales cycle. However, ABM shortens the sales cycle because nurturing of all prospects is done simultaneously.


  • • Minimal wastage of resources

With resources and time being focused on fewer accounts that will most likely close sales, there is a minimal wastage of resources.


  • • Clear Return on Investment

Account based marketing tactics are measurable and precise as it produces the highest ROI compared to all other B2B marketing tactics. ABM delivers a high ROI than other marketing approaches.

Account based marketing examples

Here are examples of how to develop an account-based marketing program:


Paid advertising

Paid social media ads and PPC are a popular channel of reaching target accounts via the web. You can target specific personas and companies through social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn while also taking advantage of technology like IP targeting and retargeting, so your display campaigns focus on just a handful of the target accounts.


Email campaigns

Email is an indispensable marketing channel for account-based marketing. While volume-based marketing uses marketing automation and templates, ABM focuses on tailoring email messages for each individual and company.

Wrapping up…

Account based marketing doesn’t have to be complicated. When you operationalise account based marketing tactics discussed above, you’ll not get better at identifying valuable accounts but also reduce friction between your sales and marketing teams, thus promoting growth.

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