What is ABM (Account-based Marketing)?

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Account-based Marketing (ABM), is a B2B marketing strategy that takes an account (prospect or customer) and views it as a market in its own right. Sound confusing? It doesn’t have to be.

Take the organisational chart of a traditional company. Each department is represented by an executive, that tend to be the ‘stakeholders’ in the evaluation, purchase, and provisioning of goods and services for the company. These are the people you need to impress – they are the ultimate decision-makers.

Each department has their own purpose in the company. Different purposes mean they will have different targets and quotas to the next. In the corporate world, instinctively we are wired for self-interest – you must make this work in your favour.

How do you win over stakeholders? By speaking directly to their future desires and current shortfalls, by showcasing a solution that addresses their pain points. Basically, they want to know how their team can hit their targets – this gives you, as a marketer, direction.

ABM means you aim to cover all ‘bases’ by winning support in multiple departments. With champions from every relevant angle, you’re far more likely to make the sale.

The state of ABM

Aside from being another acronym to add to your vocabulary, it’s been repetitively tipped as a hot trend for 2017. Thanks to SiriusDecisions’ results from their survey of 200 B2B organisations in late 2016, we are able to prove ABM’s ‘hot trend’ status with some awesome statistics:

  • 70%+ = have teams that are dedicated to, or involved in ABM.[1]
  • 58% = had a pilot ABM strategy in place (at time of survey).[1]
  • 41% = have ABM fully up-and-running, a figure which doubled from the previous year.[1]
  • 60% = marketing departments that says they have some level of alignment with Sales, again, another figure which doubled fromthe previous year.[1]

Blockages to ABM

  • Poor Sales/Marketing alignment
  • Fixation on MQL quantity
  • No tool to clearly see the account’s ‘landscape’
  • Having no defined ‘content funnel’
  • Lack of up-sell/cross-sell Marketing strategies

There you go! A quick overview of ABM to whet your appetite – but keep an eye out for our future ‘How-to’ ABM post to offer some practical advice.
Happy marketing!

 

Sources: 

[1] 2016 State of Account-Based Marketing (ABM) Study; 200 B2B companies, 90% in US.

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