As any B2B marketer who has pursued Account-based Marketing (ABM) will tell you, the primary driver for adopting this now dominant go-to-market approach is the anticipated end result: more pipeline, faster deal velocity, higher ACV and better close rates. These performance goals are compelling reasons to get started; however, the foundational work required to set yourself up for ABM is an achievement in itself – and one that ensures your whole marketing house is ready for future success.
The foundational work required to set yourself up for ABM is an achievement in itself – and one that ensures your marketing house is ready for future success.
A thorough job of preparing for ABM necessitates that the foundations of your marketing house are strong and well supported. Often, this means addressing areas that have been neglected or are in disrepair.
Here are five marketing foundations you will need to ensure are in an excellent state:
- Ideal Account Profile (IAP): A crystal clear view of your ideal customers – one that is data-backed and market-validated – is an integral starting point for any and all marketing. Think beyond firmographics and include technographics, behavioral traits, and more. (And hint: given the complexity of all you sell, just one IAP may not be enough!)
- Data health: Ensuring data accuracy, consistency and recency can be a heavy lift, but the better the state of your data, the greater the confidence you can have in your account-based program performance.
- Martech performance: Are your platforms and systems integrated fully? Does data pass seamlessly from one to the other? Is there beneficial functionality you’ve not yet accessed or activated? If not, now is the time to address so you can get all you can from your martech investments.
- Measurement and reporting capabilities: If you are not able to confidently track the performance of your marketing channels and tactics today, shifting to report against business-register KPIs required for ABM will be a monumental lift. Ensure you have the tracking, measurement and reporting basics down; the necessary tracking and reporting software; and a consistent tagging methodology in place so you can accurately represent the results of your significant efforts and investments.
- Marketing and Sales alignment: Adopting ABM may (finally!) be the impetus for getting sales and marketing to the same table. Agreeing on a shared vision of priorities, roles, responsibilities and measures of success delivers much more than just program performance benefits; it positions teams for strong and sustainable relationships.
It takes time, effort and investment to shore up these foundations, but if the bones are good, the performance of not just your ABM programs, but your entire demand marketing house, will be stronger for it.