In 2004, ITSMA pioneered the concept of Account-Based Marketing (ABM), and according to their definition of it, the idea of ABM is based on “a strategic approach that combines targeted, insight-led marketing with sales to increase mindshare, strengthen relationships, and drive growth in specific new and existing accounts”. The idea is that many B2B buyers or potential clients may tune out everything they hear but the most important and most relevant messaging. And, by using these ABM principles, sales teams can zero in on the essential needs of their top-tier clients or prospects.
Here we’ve put together some helpful insights about ABM for you. These insights outline the principles of ABM and emphasize why, when using this approach, sales teams must focus on quality over quantity in order to be successful.
Insight #1: Don’t send sales pitches. Help solve pain points. If you listen closely during a sales call, you should easily be able to identify what the customer truly needs, and that may not necessarily be what he or she actually says they need. The key is listening. Yes, it is important to have sales and marketing materials on hand and to thoroughly know the product you’re selling, but if it isn’t what would truly benefit the client, barriers between success and failure will be significant.
Insight #2: Sales and marketing must collaborate. In order for an ABM program to work for teams, sales and marketing must collaborate as much as possible to create the most relevant materials for sales teams and potential clients. Development activities for these teams can mean the difference between strong and weak collateral. Schedules are tight, and people are very busy. Setting up your teams for success mean planning days very carefully and providing time for each team to meet and work together as much as possible.
Insight #3: Grow relationships over time. According to a recent blog by SalesLoft, the key to a successful ABM program is nurturing relationships over time. “Pleasant persistence isn’t a new phrase to the sales community, and for good reason. Studies have shown that only 10% of SDRs contact a lead more than three times over the course of their outreach process. This is a major sales problem, considering another study by Telenet and Ovation Sales Group found that, in 2007, it took 3.68 cold call attempts to reach a prospect. But that information is about a decade old. Here in the end of 2016, it takes at least 8 touches — of varying mediums — in a sales process that’s about 22% longer. The good news is: it’s possible to create high-quantity and high-quality correspondence with the right email tracking tools.” This means that relationships have to happen naturally, and that takes time. It’s important to consider building relationships than trying to fill sales call quotas.
Insight #4: Personalize outreach with tailored campaigns. Personalizing all communications, such as emails, is an important aspect of successful ABM programs. Smart attachments (meaning attachments that are targeted to your prospect) are one way to do this. Another way to help personalize your outreach efforts is with an automated campaign. By creating tiers for your accounts and prioritizing those top-tier prospects with personalized messages, as well as automating those lower-tier accounts’ emails, sales teams can make the most of their time and sent better emails based on their prospects time zone or other factors.
These insights will hopefully allow your teams to work smarter and be much more efficient while at the same time maximizing the quality of every prospect interaction. ABM can be a successful approach for your team, but only if you find a way to make it work within your organization by emphasizing a more tailored approach to outreach.
SalesLoft Sales Engagement Platform helps your team set and execute on a cadence of phone, email and social communications so they can convert more target accounts into customer accounts.