We all know that getting Sales bought into your ABM strategy will make or break it. But what if we told you there was a way to get them involved, excited, and shouting your name from the rooftops?
It’s all about helping them to unearth nuggets of gold, i.e. information that would not be readily available to them that can help them close that sale.
That’s what we call treasure hunting with Account-based Marketing. ABM, after all, is all about engagement. Engaging with your most important customers (current and future) and building those multi-threaded relationships.
ABM can empower Sales to achieve greater performance by providing them with timely information on the state of engagement of each target account, and then the right content and approach.
In a recent episode of Let’s talk ABM, we sat down with Heather Adams, Senior Director of Demand & ABM at Socure, to discuss how they treasure hunt.
In the interview (full recording here) we discussed:
- How to succeed at One-to-few ABM
- What to know about ABM and technology
- How to build alignment with Sales
- Advice on how to succeed at Account-based Marketing
So, let’s dive into some of Heather’s top tips.
7 ways to unearth treasure with ABM
1. Embrace every opportunity
Ever wondered what the single biggest mistake is that you can make when adopting Account-based Marketing?
It’s staying stagnant.
Being stuck in your ways, refusing to try something new – this is precisely what will prevent you from seeing true success with your ABM program.
B2B Marketing is constantly evolving. New trends and technologies emerge, industries shift and transform, challenges arise and fall away like the tide.
Nothing is ever still. So you can’t be either.
If you want to stay ahead of the curve, you need to be ready to embrace every opportunity that comes your way. Opportunities to target new accounts, to build relationships with new stakeholders, to leverage new technologies and tactics…
You need to be ready to pivot, experiment and make the most of every opportunity you’re faced with.
2. Center everything around your data
Consider data your treasure map. It puts you on the right path, and guides you toward that big ‘X’ that you’re aiming for – landing the accounts that matter most to your organization.
Ignoring such valuable guidance puts you at risk of taking a wrong turn.
But, even the most powerful data is useless without the right people interpreting and building upon it! And this is true with intent data platforms too.
From account selection to ongoing tactics, messaging, and program evolution – you need a solid data foundation and a strong partnership with Sales to get the results you seek.
If the data is your map, consider your Salespeople your SatNav – helping you to unravel the path, and reach your final destination. You need both on your side if you want to build a truly impactful program.
“We really partnered with Sales and Sales leadership in trying to really hone in and define our target verticals and accounts, and what we were going to prioritize. However, we also knew that we really needed to have data at the core of that to help guide us.” – Heather Adams, Senior Director of Demand & ABM at Socure
3. Tap into the resources available to you
If you had a vehicle on your treasure hunt that could get you to the big red ‘X’ considerably faster, would you use it? Or would you just let it sit idle?
It may seem like a ridiculous question, but all too often ABMers fail to leverage the resources available to them throughout their programs. Don’t be that person!
No matter the size of your ABM function, the maturity of your tech stack, or the depth of your budget – tapping into the resources available to you is essential to success.
That means harvesting your first-party data, leveraging the different skillsets and talents within your teams, and giving every individual in your organization a voice – so they can contribute insights, ideas, and feedback throughout the process.
It’s not the size of the team or the budget that counts – it’s the determination and contribution of those involved.
“We had a smaller team, especially from the start. So, we really had to make the most of our resources and our programs to move the needle the most.” – Heather Adams, Senior Director of Demand & ABM at Socure
4. Don't be afraid to take multiple paths
‘Trial and error’ is the name of the game! Very few who are new to ABM will get it right on the first try. And the truth is, the best programs are those that have seen failure, as well as success. They’re the ones that have adapted and evolved with every learning and mistake.
And they’re the ones which showed there is more than one path to the finish line.
To unearth the real treasure, you need to adopt a ‘surround sound’ approach to targeting your accounts. Every account, and every stakeholder within that account, will have different needs and pain points.
And they’ll also resonate with different channels and messages.
With a ‘surround sound’ approach to ABM, you can cover all bases – providing hyper-personalized experiences across LinkedIn, email, customized web pages, in-person events, etc.
A solid mix of physical and digital strategies offers you a higher chance of engaging key decision-makers in a way that makes them feel valued and understood. Generic experiences are not enough – you need to aim for the ‘wow’ factor!
“Different types of people are going to resonate with different types of channels and content types, et cetera. So, we really worked to have a solid mix of digital and physical strategies.” – Heather Adams, Senior Director of Demand & ABM at Socure
5. Team up with peers
Never underestimate the power of peer-to-peer strategies!
At the end of the day, B2B is actually H2H – human-to-human. And no amount of clever content, eye-catching design, or cutting-edge technology can match up to genuine human interaction.
It’s been a difficult few years. Having stripped so many people of basic socialization, the pandemic highlighted the true impact of human interaction – on a business, as well as on the individual. It unites people, it makes everyone feel understood, and it enables lasting impressions that can form the foundation of meaningful relationships.
Face-to-face communication is a tool in every ABMer’s arsenal. One that, all too often, is overlooked. By connecting key stakeholders with like-minded peers and thought leaders, you can help to build a reputation for your brand as a trusted advisor.
“It's very likely that your target accounts are experiencing the same issues that their peers have been tackling, or may have tackled. And so, we really try to get that incorporated into the experience.” – Heather Adams, Senior Director of Demand & ABM at Socure
6. Seek out the gold!
You’re treasure hunting – not digging for dirt! With ABM, you need to keep your eye on the prize and look out for the golden nuggets that can take your program to the next level.
And by golden nuggets, we mean insights.
Across your organization, there is a plethora of data at your disposal. But, the challenge is unearthing it and harnessing it to bring your program to life.
Your teams have a lot on their plates. As an ABMer, it’s up to you to dedicate time and resources to making the right data available to the right people. Educate team members, share knowledge and expertise, and ensure your teams have access to the account insights they need to do what they do best.
From intent data to engagement – it’s these golden nuggets that will illuminate the path to the real treasure: long-lasting relationships with your target accounts.
“We had a brand-new ABM platform, 6sense. It has so much data in there. And really, sometimes the challenges can be to get the broader SDR and AE team aware of all those data insights, and then actioning them.” – Heather Adams, Senior Director of Demand & ABM at Socure
7. Create your own treasure map
When treasure hunting, you can’t go in blind. You need to have a set destination – an ‘X’ on the map – and a plan for how you’re going to get there.
You need to map out your whole journey to get you from A to B, or you’ll inevitably get lost on the way.
That means getting the foundations right. Knowing your goals, aligning your strategy, securing leadership buy-in, and working in unison across multiple teams and departments – this is what will form the backbone of your program, and keep it from crumbling at the first hurdle.
It’s also important to keep track of milestones along the way. Not only does celebrating the small wins help to keep your teams motivated, it also helps you monitor progress and pivot as necessary to ensure you stay on track.
“Always approach things as a pilot. I think with ABM, there's so much there, it can be overwhelming if you're just starting out thinking that you have to over-engineer all of these components.” – Heather Adams, Senior Director of Demand & ABM at Socure
Looking for more ABM tips and tricks? Check out our monthly e-newsletter, DashDot, where we dig up all the latest trends, tactics, and insights in the Account-based world.