The key to ABM success
With 56% of Marketers agreeing that personalized content is key to ABM success (Forrester), we’ve dug a little deeper into how personalization plays an integral part in your ABM campaign to ensure you get the best results. For most of you reading this you’re probably come here because you have an ABM campaign currently live, are planning one or are completely new to ABM and are looking to implement one soon.
Account Based Marketing (ABM) is a strategic approach to B2B marketing focusing on target accounts within a specific market. To be able to create a successful ABM campaign you need to know your ICP inside and out, understand the market in which they operate, the opportunities available, and the challenges they face, so you can talk with authority on exactly how you can support them to achieve their goals.
Although we are B2B marketers, we are still consumers and want to be treated as we would in the B2C world. As buyers, we are inundated with multiple offers, products, and software, with generic marketing techniques every day. What we really want is to be given the B2C experience, with suppliers only targeting us with the most relevant proposition to help overcome our pain points. That’s where personalization can help you cut through the noise.
There are three different routes in which you can take with the ABM strategy – one-to-one, one-to-few, and one-to-many. One-to-one ABM is for targeting certain prospects that are the ideal fit for your company, or current customers that you need to retain. One-to-few allows you to group up a few prospects with similar characteristics to receive the same campaign. With the evolution of Technology, one-to-many allows you to target a larger group of prospects with similar attributes. Each of these accounts needs a different level of personalization to ensure effectiveness.
The more targeted your ABM campaign is the more personalization is needed to ensure its success. Within One-to-one campaigns, you are focusing on one target account, within that account you will find the different individuals that make up the DMU (decision making unit). You’ll need to identify the challenges each member of the DMU faces to highlight your product/solution in a light that resonates with them. One-to-few ABM tends to be focused on one particular vertical. For example, focusing on industry challenges. One-to-many fuels off light personalization based on specific personas or industry goals, with a rarity of the account’s name being featured in the campaign. Arguably, this isn’t ABM, but in fact just really great marketing.
The key to success explained…
I could go on forever about the different things you could personalize within an ABM campaign, but for now, let’s just focus on three of the best personalization techniques:
Emails are used within B2B marketing every day to reach high volumes of prospects quickly and without needing to splash too much cash. But when was the last time you received or sent an email personalized down to persona and industry pain points? Especially when using emails for one-to-one campaigns, you need to go beyond using the first name and company name tags. Within any ABM campaign, your email copy must be personalized for each account. What pain points you choose to use in the copy and exactly how your business will be the solution will be the difference between your prospect noticing you or deleting the email along with the other pitches they receive daily.
Many ABM campaigns involve gifting, whether that be an eGift card to buy some coffee whilst reading one of your eBooks, a selection of motivational books, or some sweet treats to butter them up. Needless to say, no matter what gifting method you decide to use, personalization is what is going to make it stand out. If you’re targeting a CMO, it’s most likely that you are not the only one, so you need your mail to be rememberable! You can pretty much personalize anything you wish to, but here are a few examples that we think work the most:
- Sending a personalized note with the gift
- Sending industry-specific books with a personalized cover with your logo and their name
- Personalizing the physical gift e.g. their name with your logo on a mug
When considering ABM (or any other marketing campaign) you must make sure your message resonates at all touchpoints, including throughout your largest marketing asset: Your website. This is the first place a prospect is going to visit when considering you, and the last! If you’re sending an industry-specific campaign to manufacturing companies, but when they arrive on your site, they’re greeted with client logos from the software industry, pictures on your site of the healthcare sector, and generic copy, you’re spoiling all of the efforts from your outbound campaign. Website personalization allows you to show relevant information to each visitor, ensuring that your ABM campaign flows from your first point of contact to your website. After all, B2B websites are where the customer journey starts and stops!
You can also serve experiences based on where your prospects are in the funnel or what stage they are in your ABM campaign. If someone has already had a demo, why would you want to show a CTA that says, ‘book a demo’? It would make more sense to show a CTA that says, ‘talk to your sales rep’. This can help to ensure their journey throughout the funnel and the ABM campaign is seamless.
Personalization underpins all successful ABM campaigns, whether that’s one-to-one, one-to-few, or one-to-many. Ensuring you’re personalizing from the very first step in the campaign all the way through their customer journey will show to that prospect that you really know them, their needs and their challenges, and exactly how to solve them.
Written by Leila Wallingford