To hone my account-based marketing skills, I took the Demandbase Foundations certification online. Last month, I had the pleasure of attending the fifth Demandbase ABM Innovation Summit in San Francisco and earned my advanced certification.
I genuinely enjoyed the keynote speakers and the track sessions. There were nuggets in each presentation, and I couldn’t write fast enough (yes, I am a millennial, but I still love physically writing!) to catch them all. Much like my takeaways from the Healthcare IT Marketing & PR Community (HITMC) conference blog, I want to share some insight I gained from this event.
Four topics were drilled into my head by the time I left:
- It’s vital to create a target account list, and you should update it on a regular basis.
- Align your sales and marketing departments.
- The ROI in ABM is proven.
- Focus on personalization and relationships.
The Three “A’s” Make The Three “R’s” Possible
Below is a phenomenal graphic from the Welcome and Executive Address. It’s safe to say all marketers want to improve their reputation, relationships, and revenue. This graphic shows that the trifecta of analytics, AI, and ABM enhanced marketers three “R’s,” and how the three “A’s” did that.
Pat Oldenburg, Sr. Director of Digital Marketing & Ops, from ServiceMax by GE presented on AI and ABM Supercharges Business Growth for ServiceMax. He was on a mission to achieve aggressive pipeline goals while on a fixed budget, which is a huge challenge that many marketers face.
He was able to leverage AI and real-time intent to improve productivity, and increase account engagement, website conversion rates, and his marketing-sourced pipeline. Optimizing funnel conversion played a massive role in all these results, and Oldenburg used the tactics below:
- Account-based advertising
- Industry-based segmentation
- Key industry personalization
- Algorithm-based content recommendations
I recommend looking into some of these if you also have aggressive pipeline goals while on a fixed budget. Even if that isn’t your situation, some of these tactics could truly improve your marketing results.
Creating a Pipeline Generation Machine
I attended a track session about getting ABM up and running to create a pipeline gen machine, by Amanda Wynne, Sr. Director of Marketing, from SAVO Group. She showed a proven blueprint for how to quickly implement ABM. Her ABM tech toolkit consisted of the following:
- Account selection
- Demandbase ad platform
- Website personalization
This process looks like it could work well for other marketers along with the guidance of other ABM best practices.
Agencies and The New ABM Ecosystem
A session I especially looked forward to was by Michael McLaren, Executive Vice President, from Merkle, because it was on agencies and the new ABM ecosystem. I work at an agency, so naturally, I was psyched about this one!
- The future is ABX – account-based everything. I think this will help marketers get ahead of the curve, and their clients and customers will truly appreciate that.
- Customizing is a necessity.
- When someone is on your website, the content and journey should match.
- Lastly, he shared an organized slide on the agency’s role. Rather than a company implementing ABM in their organization, agencies help strategize for other companies on how to integrate ABM and make it work for them.
The Future of B2B Marketing
I love LinkedIn, so I was curious about what Jon Lombardo, Global Brand Strategy Lead, from LinkedIn, thinks about the future of B2B marketing. He shared some eye-opening statistics and ideas:
- In a study, only 3% of buyers felt like advertising is relevant to them. We as marketers need to sincerely be customer-centric and not just guess when creating personas.
- Enter “The Netflix Era” by starting with data-driven personas.
- Being first to market means nothing, unless if you are first to mind. So, be first to mind if you can. If you can’t, then invent a new category.
- New isn’t what sells – only 1 in 5 new ad campaigns outperforms old campaigns. What sells is relevance and familiarity.
- Don’t sell original, sell “MAYA,” which is most advanced, yet acceptable.
Bille Jean King Knows Marketing?
Billie Jean King was incredible. I never thought I’d get to hear her speak in person. It had nothing to do with marketing, but it didn’t matter. Sometimes you just need a reminder to step back, and think about the bigger picture: we’re all humans, and we need to take care of one another. Like Billie Jean King once said, “The main thing is to care. Care very hard, even if it is only a game you are playing.” In our case, care very hard, because marketing is crucial for successful companies.