What is ABM?

What is Account-Based Marketing?

Account-based marketing, sometimes referred to as key account marketing, is not a new technique: it rose to prominence in the 1990s as businesses discovered they could experience better ROI if they targeted their marketing to a specific customer rather than a group. However, it continues to be popular because it continues to work well for many businesses.

Not only does it continue to work well, but with the advances in technology, account-based marketing is easier than ever with the use of data. If used correctly, account-based marketing can take your company to a whole new level.

Account-Based: A Market of One

Account-based marketing is when the entire company focuses their attention on one specific- high paying account. It requires the entire company coming together to create content specifically for their one client. Instead of personas and buying personalities, marketing hyper-specializes their content based on that one potential client’s pain points and needs.

This type of marketing is focused on lead conversion versus lead generation. Conversion is based on a series of engagements, rather than trying to attract as many potential clients as possible. Likewise, content is focused on industry value, as opposed to SEO value. The entire framework is based on specificity: sales and marketing work together to create value for one customer.

Accounts-based marketing requires a certain product and market in order to be profitable. Some requirements for successful ABM include:

  • B2B. The amount of time and manpower required for each account means that you need large contracts, which is most suited for working with business as opposed to consumers.
  • Large clients. ABM market is best suited for companies that work with large enterprises versus small- to medium-sized business. The key is size over quantity, so the client must be big enough to generate profit for your company.
  • Multiple products. In addition to large clients, cross-selling and upselling are essential for profit. ABM is ideal if you offer complementary products and packages as well.
  • Long sales cycles. The partnership process in ABM will help speed up the process if you have a long sales cycle. If your business typically makes quick sales, ABM will probably slow you down and hurt the profit of your business.

Does ABM work?

Large enterprises have specific needs and need more attention than other businesses. Businesses who cater to that in their marketing and sales will see a better ROI than if they were trying to stay general to reach a wider scope.

If your typical customer size and product type lend itself to specialized marketing, ABM can help to create the cohesiveness in your company that will land bigger, as opposed to more, sales. It also means that your marketing will not be random and the focus can mean greater success.

ABM has experienced a recent resurgence as B2B companies can create more specific content for their large clients and technology makes it easier to identify key targets for their accounts. By working to attract specific clients who are potentially more worth your time, you can have more control over your business.