Q&A – Is ABM only for large accounts?
As we promised, we’re back with another Q&A. This session’s question is a fantastic opportunity to look at one of the common misunderstandings surrounding account-based marketing. It’s a simple enough question, but one that we (and probably you, too) have heard a lot over the years:
Is ABM only for large accounts?
A lot of marketer’s gut reaction is yes, but that’s totally wrong. It’s crucial to know that this is a misconception – and one that can cost you dearly as ABM gets adopted by more and more companies in 2017.
There are two parts to address here: ABM for large accounts and ABM at scale. Let’s look at an example of each.
ABM for large accounts
Imagine you do marketing for an IT data center company that sells to the top 25 financial institutions in the US.
Your target audience for each company comprises 5-7 decision makers, 12-15 key influencers and 100’s of others with strong opinions, hidden amongst an IT staff and business units. Your needles, your haystack. You definitely don’t want to market to all personnel; spamming everyone with a generic message is ineffectual and throws you in the spam folder. Not good!
To be successful, you need to have a personalized outreach strategy for each stakeholder and influencer in these accounts, and target them in a channel that matters to them. That’s how you convert them into an opportunity and close the deal more effectively.
ABM at scale
Can a target account list consist of 10K accounts? Absolutely.
Take a high-growth accounting or HR SaaS company for instance; their ideal customer needs to be a Series B/C funded private company. That’s a big number – and that’s ABM at scale. Despite the huge number of accounts, they still have just 2-4 stakeholders and 2-4 influencers.
ABM in this instance means having 4-8 personalized messages and nurture programs, identifying the key 4-8 in each of the 10K companies, engaging them and finally, converting them to sales.
Most existing ABM solutions force marketers to make hard choices. There are several limitations and costs, largely due to manually-built workflows and other staff-dependent processes. This makes them expensive to employ against more than a low number of accounts.
We say, screw that! Let’s use artificial intelligence instead.
Using AI to automate the lead identification and engagement process reduces both costs and effort, empowering you to deploy ABM at scale across as many – or as few – accounts as you like.
Think of AI as the great equalizer. After all, ABM should be for every account, no matter how small.
With this kind of capability, it’s crucial that you use AI-powered ABM to target correctly; it’s 2017 and the future is here.
Don’t get left behind.