B2B marketing is harder than ever. Audiences are finicky. Bosses are panicky. Salespeople are hungry (for leads).
Increasingly, Account-Based Marketing is the solution that brings sanity and success back to the B2B lead gen universe.
Recently, I partnered with our friends at Terminus to create a Slideshare presentation (view/download above or via http://www.slideshare.net/jaybaer/the-cmo-blueprint-for-accountbased-marketing) that describes what ABM is, why it works, and how you can implement it in your organization and massively improve your B2B lead gen.
The Fundamental Difference of Account-Based Marketing
In regular B2B marketing, we use segmentation and personas and targeting to try to find prospects that might be interested in our wares. It’s like putting out a specific variety of bird seed in your backyard because cardinals like that type of seed, and if you’re going to watch birds, they might as well be cardinals.
In this analogy, your B2B content marketing and targeting are the seed, and your prospects are the cardinals.
But in account-based marketing, you’re not trying to attract any cardinals in the vicinity that are fired up about your free buffet of seeds. Instead, you focus on specific birds (some cardinals, some robins, some blue jays) that all hang out in the same stand of trees.
Simply put, ABM targets companies, not personas.
With an account-based marketing program by your side (Terminus is very easy to set up and control), you upload a list of the clients you’d love to have. The system then finds all the relevant birds that work for that company: marketers, IT, VPs, whatever makes sense for you. You’re marketing to multiple people at the right company. But that’s not really the genius of it.
Relevancy Always Wins
Certainly, account-based marketing is powerful due to its ability to promote to specific companies instead of wasting time and budget on unqualified or undesirable prospects. Seriously, how often do people request a white paper or attend a webinar, even though there is no way they are ever going to buy the product or service? It happens CONSTANTLY. Account-based marketing reduces some of that inefficiency.
But for me, the best part of ABM is that it guarantees message relevancy.
Relevancy is the killer app. The more specific and resonant you can make your marketing, the more successful it will be (at least in B2B).
Terminus and other ABM providers make this a reality by allowing you to easily customize social ads, display ads, emails, landing pages, white papers, and even direct mail at the target account level.
Imagine you really wanted to work with adidas (one of our clients at Convince & Convert). Using account-based marketing not only could you reach all the appropriate people in whatever division of adidas you’re targeting, but also customize all the banner ads, social ads, landing pages, and everything else to talk about adidas and its specific pain points.
Historically, this type of customization is what the best salespeople do when on the phone, in meetings, and when preparing proposals. ABM lets marketers act more like great salespeople, increasing conversion rates and reducing wasted spend.