April 6, 2022 (Updated: May 4, 2023)
Account-based marketing (ABM) has benefits for both sales and marketing departments. By shortening the sales cycle, lowering costs, and making re-engagement more effective, this framework can help streamline your business-to-business (B2B) lead generation and provide more successful conversions. Browsing account-based marketing examples shows what tactics you can use to implement this framework into your own business model. In this article, we’re covering topics like:
For B2B companies, the ABM framework helps align sales and marketing teams to find better, more targeted leads. It flips the traditional sales funnel to focus on those target leads, called accounts, from the beginning of the process. From there, sales teams and marketers work together to nurture qualified accounts and engage them with content marketing and other services, then build strong relationships with individual decision-makers within each one.
This process is one way that B2B marketing differs from business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing. Teams aren’t just trying to convince one person to make a purchase. There are different people and minds that have decision-making power within each account that marketers must persuade and convince about their product before making a sale.
ABM strategies can help you in all three phases of the flipped sales funnel. These include finding qualified leads, nurturing prospects, and building relationships. These examples let you use your tools, resources, and budget to your advantage. That makes implementing the framework easier for your company, no matter the size or industry. Consider ABM content strategies like:
Educational content informs or teaches your account clients about topics in their industry. This may include resource articles, eBooks, white papers, webinars, e-learning courses, and infographics. These and other content marketing tools lend themselves to educational content by nature. It’s helpful to learn as much as you can about your target accounts before you brainstorm topic ideas.
The more background information you have, the more personalized you can make the educational content. This strategy works at all stages of the sales funnel in the ABM framework. It can help you attract qualified account leads and nurture the relations through the funnel. It also builds stronger relationships with stakeholders to re-engage them for future purchases. Contact CopyPress to learn how a partnership with us creates the content you want without the strain on your marketing team.
With ABM techniques, B2B stakeholders feel they receive the same specialized attention as a B2C consumer. Adding personalized touches to your communications can drive this mentality. Consider targeting stakeholders and accounts by department, role, or investment within a company.
The more personal you can be with email communication depends on where each account is in the ABM funnel. The closer you get to the bottom, the more personalized you can be with communications. There are three types of ABM personalization marketers use to attract leads. They include:
In 1-to-1 ABM, marketers develop personalized content and programs for each account. They target individual accounts by brand name and learn company pain points or goals. This may be the most time-consuming and costly version of ABM. But it may also be the most rewarding for conversions and revenue.
In 1-to-few ABM, marketers target clusters of stakeholders for accounts. Clusters may include department, job description, or attachment to the company. Marketers also use this type for accounts in similar verticals. This method is popular for email marketing campaigns because it uses segmentation. It can also save time and effort when contacting stakeholders in similar roles.
Related: FAQ: What Is Audience Segmentation?
The 1-to-many ABM strategy targets the individual stakeholders within an account. It uses messaging that connects with those people individually, rather than as representatives of the brand. This is another strategy for email communication at the bottom of the ABM funnel. It can help nurture stakeholder relationships.
Social media can be a helpful tool for finding qualified account leads for the top of the ABM funnel. Monitoring social media posts teaches you a wealth of information about each lead before you contact the company. Lead’s social media profiles can tell you about the company, its stakeholders, and current clients. All that information can tell you what the brand, and the people it’s trying to please, need.
Social media also works as an ABM connection channel. You can network with account representatives to continue conversations with brands online.
Your ABM targeting is only as good as the data you have on each lead. One of the primary goals of ABM is to find the most qualified leads first. This shortens the sales cycle by targeting companies that most need your products or services. It’s a solid strategy once you have a list of account names and brands. But getting them can be time-consuming if you don’t know where to look.
Networking is crucial to business growth and success. Having contacts in related verticals and industries opens up opportunities for new accounts. It also introduces you to other business professionals who may recommend new accounts. Be sure your partnerships are with related organizations with whom you’re not in direct competition. For example, a content marketing agency can partner with a company that sells content management system (CMS) software.
Digital marketing is popular, but it’s not the only option available for ABM. Supplement digital strategies with direct marketing to increase your qualified leads. This tactic is helpful for B2B companies with a presence in a specific geographic area. It may work best in the middle lead-nurturing stage of the ABM funnel.
Send direct mail to the offices or workplaces for your most qualified accounts. This adds to the personalization you’re trying to cultivate with ABM. Learning more about each organization can also determine if this strategy fits. For example, a lead without a traditional headquarters may not be a target for direct mail because they do work remotely. Companies that have offices may enjoy receiving direct mail. This could include content like a test product or an invitation to an event.
Hosting an event is a great way to work with accounts throughout the ABM funnel. It works even better when coupled with attending other conferences and meet-ups. Hosting events targeted to specific verticals is a popular 1-to-few ABM approach. It helps attract the most qualified leads in any industry by providing content and networking opportunities. Events are also changes to nurture established leads. They let you re-engage with past target accounts to provide new content.
Hosting events takes you outside of the traditional content or email marketing experiences. With in-person events, stakeholders put faces to names. Doing so creates personalized experiences for attendees. It also speeds up the pipeline from prospect to customer.
Both retargeting and remarketing work to engage the accounts most likely to partner with your company. The two tactics help build connections through brand awareness. They also re-engage prospects who haven’t yet made a conversion. Both strategies are prime choices for using with the ABM framework. They lend themselves to all three areas of the funnel.
Retargeting uses paid ads to single out audiences who visit your website or social media profiles. IT includes social media and search ads to keep your company top-of-mind for the target audience. Remarketing uses direct methods to reconnect with accounts that worked with your brand before. Tools like Google Remarketing help make these processes easier for your ABM strategy.
Learning about new strategies is helpful when working on new marketing campaigns. But it can be as beneficial to see how real-world organizations use these strategies. We’ve found three examples of ABM, to show how these strategies in the real world generate results:
GumGum is a contextual intelligence platform. This program scans digital advertisements for all media elements to understand their context. Then it helps you find the right places to display those ads to get the best results. GumGum is a good 1-to-1 ABM case study. It had a very specific account goal: sign T-Mobile as a client. Marketers used Twitter to build their knowledge of T-Mobile’s CEO John Legere. They found he loves Batman, and that gave them an idea.
The team at GumGum created a comic book called T-Man and Gums. The story told how the superhero team saved a city from bad cell reception. How? with the help of contextual intelligence technology. GumGum shipped 100 copies to T-Mobile headquarters. Legere praised the work on Twitter within hours. The two set up a meeting within days and GumGum landed the T-Mobile account with attention to detail.
Image via Sweet Fish Media
Even if you can’t get as creative as GumGum, you can do similar research to please your account targets. Request your free content analysis report from CopyPress. With the report, learn how your current content compares to your top three industry competitors. It also helps you find gaps in your strategy. These areas show where potential account leads are searching for resources and information. You can use those terms and keywords to shape your content strategy and ABM offerings.
“CopyPress gives us the ability to work with more dealership groups. We are able to provide unique and fresh content for an ever growing customer base. We know that when we need an influx of content to keep our clients ahead of the game in the automotive landscape, CopyPress can handle these requests with ease.”
Director of SEO at Auto Revo
Salsify is a B2B organization that targets B2C companies. It helps them improve commerce experience management online. The software helps brand managers, retailers, and distributors build better consumer experiences. Salsify worked on a 1-to-few ABM strategy when preparing for a road-show event in New York City. It wanted to generate more buzz with big names like Google in attendance. The company wanted to land 60 extra registrants for its segment at the show and employed ABM to reach the goal.
By using targeted display ads and personalized emails, the marketers secured 82 registrants. The marketing team passed the most qualified leads to its sales team. This sped up the process and helped them meet the goal on time. This strategy shows that research, targeted messaging, and efficient pipelines can help you exceed ABM goals.
DocuSign is a leader in paperless contracts, documents, and electronic signatures. With remote work flourishing, the company wanted to increase traffic, click-through rates, and brand awareness. The marketers thought this would help secure more conversions from qualified leads. They relied on a 1-to-many ABM strategy to make it happen.
The marketing and sales teams created a display ad campaign for 450 accounts. They personalized messaging for six different industries and buying stages. For content, they used testimonials from current clients and specific wording, logos, and images. The campaign decreased the bounce rate on the company website. It also increased the sales pipeline for all six industries. Most impressively, it increased page views by 300%. This tactic shows personalization from a 1-to-many view can be as effective as putting effort into a 1-to-1 approach.
According to HubSpot, 70% of marketers reported using ABM in 2021. This was a 55% increase from the previous year. That trend may increase in 2022. Reviewing account-based marketing examples can help you stay in line with other brands. Working these tips into your B2B strategy can help you grab your share of the market.
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