Account-Based Marketing: Leaping over the Lead-Centric Hurdles
We’re digital creatures today but what if we were to tell you that the latest hot marketing tool isn’t found in any martech stack? It can revolutionise your sales approach and dramatically boost revenue. We’re talking about account-based marketing. It’s a strategy, not a technology, and it could be the best thing to ever land in your enterprise.
Account-based marketing is not a new concept, but it’s gaining in usage because savvy marketers realise the impact it can have on a business. Account-based marketing improves ROI, utilises personalisation and ultimately creates the ultimate customer experiences. And to what end? It transitions a company from a lead-centric model to an account-centric one to get to revenue faster.
For years, companies did their due diligence with marketing messaging shot out to prospects and customers regardless of where those prospective customers were in their plan to purchase—or not—from the company with the busy marketers. In the meantime, sales reps were doing their own thing with the prospects and customers in terms of messaging, meetings and golf outings. Talk about a huge disconnect.
Account-based marketing changes all that. Marketing and Sales work together to target the specific people at the specific companies which are prime candidates to buy what you’re selling. And what’s even better is that when companies dedicate time and attention on the best candidates, they’re closer than ever to better ROI and more revenue, sooner. Bye-Bye lead generation campaigns.
Lead-gen tactics were fine when that was all there was but with today’s technology and interconnected sales and marketing teams, account-based marketing is the smart strategy for boosted revenue and customer loyalty. And if that’s not enough, there are some definite drawbacks to keep investing in lead-centric campaigns.
Lead-generation tactics waste resources
Lead-generation campaigns are created to blanket potential customers in a wide swoop while account-based marketing zeroes in on specific targets. Some marketers may be more familiar with the terms “shotgun marketing” or “rifle marketing.” Whatever you call it, lead-centric marketing wastes resources in creative, distribution, people, analytics, etc. because the communications reach people who will never be a customer. It’s simply wasteful.
Lead-generation tactics can’t identify relationships with account decision-makers and influencers
One of the beautiful things about account-based marketing is that it requires the identification of decision-makers within prospective accounts. This is the first step toward clean strategies and campaigns. But what it also does is identify the relationships that a person has with peers and influencers across the account. This opens up more opportunities to create personalised communications with people who can influence conversations and sales. Who can resist such an elegant network that can support your sales efforts in each enterprise situation?
Lead-generation tactics can’t take the temperature of the account
Quite simply, lead-gen tactics can’t possibly understand how decision-makers within an account feel about your company. When you send promotions blindly in a net pattern, you run the risk of being dismissed because you didn’t know where the company was in their commitment—or even knowledge of—your company. You may not get an opportunity to engage with the appropriate decision-makers because the company isn’t interested or your message landed with the wrong people within the enterprise. Plus, there may be people at the account who are favourable toward you, but your attempts simply didn’t land appropriately, and you’re still out in the cold.
Lead-generation tactics can’t synchronise messaging
Reaching all of the employees involved directly or indirectly for purchases is something that a lead-centric campaign can’t do. There just isn’t the focused messaging and timing that you can accomplish with account-based marketing. You may get lucky a time or two if your lead-gen communications reach the correct people, at the right time, with the right message, but usually, the shotgun approach of lead-gen just can’t focus. Consistent messaging delivered into the account appropriately can synchronise synergies as your communications and relationships gain momentum.
The most important thing we tell our clients is that you don’t just want a lead, you want the account so why not put forth the appropriate strategy. So why not put your savvy sales and marketing pros together, armed with the power of account-based marketing and stand back for the revenue to roll in. Account-based marketing saves resources, creates bigger deals, speeds higher closing rates and provides fluidity. So, if your lead-generation results are sagging lately, there’s a good reason why. You should be strategising an account-based marketing initiative instead.
How to drive profit from Account-Based Marketing
There’s a time for spray and pray marketing: For casting your net wide when sharing news in the expectation that a small percentage of recipients will have that ‘aha’ moment. But let’s face it, when the emphasis is on delivering immediate results (and timely opportunities), then the more targeted your activities the better.
Which is, of course, the central promise behind Account-Based Marketing (ABM). With it comes the ability to deliver more meaningful and relevant messages that are tailored to a precise audience. But then you already knew that. What you possibly don’t know so well are the key factors behind a successful ABM programme or the main pitfalls to avoid.
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