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Marketing Strategy

The ABCs of ABM: 5 characteristics of companies ready for account-based marketing

By February 22, 2021February 26th, 2021No Comments

Account-based marketing (ABM) is no longer just for Fortune 500 companies. With marketing automation systems readily available and a low cost of entry to run targeted ads via Google and LinkedIn, companies of all sizes can launch ABM campaigns.

But just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. 

Before you dive into ABM, you should assess your organization’s readiness to engage in this level of targeted outreach. Failure to do so is likely to yield disappointing results, wasting time, money, and resources on campaigns that aren’t a fit for your company. 

What do companies need to be ready for ABM?

When it comes to ABM, Peter Drucker’s idea that “culture eats strategy for breakfast” hits the nail on the head. 

Because of the sustained commitment required to implement ABM effectively, you should prepare your organization for the long-haul.  

Here are five characteristics of an ABM-ready company: 

  1. Strong brand identity. If you’re unable to articulate your value prop clearly and are considering a re-branding initiative to market your product effectively, then ABM is not for you.
  2. Solid understanding of who you’re targeting and why. Sales and marketing alignment is critical to ABM program success. There should be a valid business reason for each client on your target account list. Just because a company in your industry has lots of money, that doesn’t mean they meet your ideal customer profile (ICP).  
  3. Expert content marketing resources. To effectively engage your target accounts’ buying committee at every stage of the buyer’s journey, you must have a robust content library from which to draw. Companies should prioritize content development in the months before launching their first ABM campaign. 
  4. Mature tech stack. ABM campaigns are all about personalization and complex workflows. Ensure you fully understand your MA system’s capabilities and your ability to run complex workflows over a sustained period. Many MA starter packages have minimal workflow functionality. 
  5. Valued multi-stakeholder outreach. ABM recognizes the importance of reaching out to and connecting with multiple stakeholders at your target accounts, not just the buyers. If your leadership does not understand the value of nurturing everyone on the buying committee, ABM is not a fit for your organization.

Are you ready for ABM?   

Ultimately, account-based marketing is about nurturing quality over quantity to help companies establish long-term relationships with buying committees from a select group of target accounts to increase the average deal size.

While your marketing tech stack may allow you to set up and launch an ABM program with ease, that doesn’t mean your organization is ready to do so.

Before embarking on a months-long campaign to engage with the buying committee at your target accounts, ask yourself if your company is ready or if your resources should go to other marketing initiatives. 

Have questions about launching an ABM program? Contact us today!

Melanie Hilliard

Author Melanie Hilliard

Melanie is a Senior Marketing Consultant at Clarity Quest. Nothing makes her heart sing more than fantastic marketing. To learn more about Melanie, please visit our leadership page.

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