Effectively leveraging account-based marketing can accelerate your pipeline, increase target account engagement, and drive new business. But business-to-business marketing and sales teams often encounter roadblocks along the way that can derail even the most well-planned strategies. Avoid the four most common ABM roadblocks with advice from integrated marketing and experience management director Mary Schneeberger.
Marketing and Sales Alignment
Siloed marketing and sales teams work towards separate KPIs and evaluate team performance with different metrics. This disconnect can lead to inefficient lead handoff, mixed messaging, or inconsistent reporting. Start by defining how your teams want to measure contact engagement across both sales and marketing outreach efforts. Three easy ways to measure contact engagement quality are:
- Campaign engagement (reach, paid advertising, forms and landing page conversions)
- Marketing revenue (influenced/sourced revenue or first- and last-touch ROI)
- Pipeline influence (velocity, conversion, and won opportunities)
Selecting the wrong accounts to target will kill your chances of ABM success. Spend the time identifying the right accounts and contacts. Teams need to be able to jointly target accounts and measure their contribution throughout the sales cycle in order to accurately evaluate their performance. Develop a manageable process that will identify the right accounts for your efforts, then divide your target account list into meaningful, addressable segments.
Assessing the quality of data available in a target account prior to campaign launch ensures you’re targeting active contacts with relevant messaging. Assess the completeness of the account org chart within your CRM tool, and complete additional research where necessary. Then identify known contacts to engage within the account.
Personalized Account Experiences
Spray and praying messaging to your entire database at best means your targets will delete your message, at worst, they will unsubscribe and never make a purchase. You have to personalize your messaging.
Creating truly omnichannel personalized experiences requires a strong content strategy that is tailored to the specific segments identified in Step 2. Focus your content messaging on specific pain points and provide tangible solutions. Your messaging should be relevant to your target segment’s industry or company size, but remember – you’re speaking to an individual within the account. Consider their role type, customer lifecycle, and sales stage to ensure you deliver messaging that matters on a 1-to-1 basis. Test different language and messages and measure results through A/B testing to see what works best.
ABM Program Scalability
It’s often hard to scale successes from pilot campaigns into a new way of working. To create, manage, and measure an account-based experience campaign requires a lot of time and planning. To do so, marketing and sales teams should be focused on content messaging, account strategies and performance analysis, not wrench turning. But it’s nearly impossible to do so without the right marketing platform. Select a platform that will serve as the foundation for both the marketing and sales team activities to increase visibility into key metrics. Then identify additional capabilities and integrations required to scale your cross-channel experiences. For example, would conversational marketing or chat functionality increase your contact with key targets? Or would they respond better to direct mail?
Ultimately, account-based marketing succeeds when sales and marketing teams focus on quality over quantity. Establish common goals and performance metrics, then working with the right technology to achieve those goals. Not sure if your technology is holding you back? Our CRM and marketing technology experts are here to help.