Here’s the scene…
A sales rep has one week to hit quota. The rep is scrambling, making outbound calls, emailing, dialing and pressuring people to buy, buy, buy.
Meanwhile, the marketer is blissfully sheltered from that stressed-out sales rep and develops and distributes a positive one size-fits-all product message.
Sound familiar? If you said yes—here’s why: there’s a widespread disconnect between sales and marketing efforts, accompanied by a lack of focus on the content and collateral that will convert a prospect.
What is account-based marketing and how can it help?
Account-based marketing (ABM) can act as your antidote to that disconnect. ABM is centered around treating current clients or individual prospects as a market of one. In other words, marketers are finding ways to scale how they create targeted customer validation content and messaging that will appeal to big clients and niche audiences.
We recently spoke with Schneider Electric Software’s Director of Industry Marketing, Maryanne Steidinger, to learn how their marketing team implemented an effective, scalable ABM strategy. After seeing initial success for their new strategy, she received the praise, “This is the best thing we’ve ever done!”
And when you think about it, creating a tailored experience for your target market or specific clients makes sense. But you may be asking yourself, doesn’t this strategy run counter to the promise of one-to-many marketing and new marketing automation technologies?
Despite a widespread agreement on the effectiveness of ABM, those committing to it are far less common. According to a survey done by Sirius Decisions, 92% of B2B companies agree that ABM is crucial, yet only 20% have been using it in some capacity for at least a year. This discrepancy hints that ABM necessitates a serious level of investment in both time and resources. So how can you make it work for your company?
If you never try, you’ll never know!
Steps to get started include defining realistic metrics for success with all ABM related activities during each step of the funnel, promoting marketing and sales buy-in and collaboration throughout the ABM process. At the heart of your new ABM strategy is finding a way to create targeted customer validation content, messaging, testimonials, and compelling reports faster than ever–without exhausting your resources or sacrificing quality.
But don’t be fooled—creating content quickly doesn’t mean it has to be sloppy. You can leverage your most important asset–your customers–to help you generate content at scale or figure out your content roadmap.
For example, Panaya, an Israeli- based SaaS company, adopted an ABM approach that yielded a 113% increase in content consumption and helped them identify more than 200 organizations who wanted to work with them–just within the first month.
How? They reevaluated their performance with current clients and studied the best use cases for their technology, concluding that Fortune 100 companies who used Oracle were their best potential clients.
Moving on this discovery, Panaya acted quickly. They built up their library of content and displayed targeted pieces of content on their site. Today, based on a user’s behavior, the site then shows specific call to action messages, and sales can be alerted to personally reach out to accounts.
If you’ve been paying attention to your email inbox, ABM is the hot new buzzword and at the forefront of many marketers’ minds. Though the initial steps toward using ABM may appear overwhelming at first, the improvement in sales efficiency and providing better return from marketing resources will all contribute to generating even greater revenue for your company.
See ABM in action! Watch our on-demand webinar, “Listen, validate, deliver: A practical approach to account-based marketing,” for tips on leveraging customer feedback to automate a constant stream of targeted customer validation content.
Follow us on Twitter @TechValidate to stay up to date for more on the vanguard of content marketing.