How to ABMify Your Demand Gen Programs in a Few Clicks

September 8, 2020

There’s one thing all B2B demand gen marketers have in common.

They’re all charged with reaching an audience in the most time-efficient and budget-friendly way possible to accelerate sales.

That means meeting people where they are—with messaging that speaks directly to their most pressing pain points. It sounds simple enough in theory, but it’s often difficult in practice. 

With demand gen alone, only 14 percent of a company’s high-value target accounts are actively engaged with the company’s offering.

But as a growing number of marketers integrate demand gen and ABM tactics to streamline their efforts, getting their solutions in front of the right people—and speeding up the sales cycle—has become significantly easier.

Here’s how you can do the same.

Use account intent to prioritize budget

Many B2B marketers use lead scoring to identify which leads are worthy of passing along to sales. They rely on things like form-fills to determine readiness to buy—and quite often, they get it wrong.

The problem doesn’t lie with marketers. The problem lies with bad measurement.

How to ABMify it

Stop treating engagement metrics like form-fills as the primary indicator of readiness to buy. 

If you can shift your focus to other factors like fit (the static data that informs your TAL) and intent (the real-time signals of interest in topics related to your brand), you can prioritize campaigns more likely to drive results.

Add a layer of account-level intent to the mix and your efforts will be even more effective. With the right ABM platform, a simple workflow will enable your team to invest in the most active accounts instead of pursuing everyone equally.

Leveraging intent topics and tracking which accounts show the most interest has several benefits.

  • Your team can prioritize accounts and personas with high intent by serving them targeted ads based on the data.
  • You can avoid the unnecessary ad spend that comes with a “spray and pray” approach.

Lastly (and perhaps most importantly), this approach will have a greater impact on your sales team and create opportunities faster.

Trade basic retargeting for hyperfocused account-based retargeting

The classic demand gen marketer sees the entire internet as their oyster. They often use one-size-fits-all messaging in the hopes of attracting clicks through retargeting ads—and they tend to follow up after every conversion.

With digital spending up 20 percent since the pandemic hit, retargeting is still a wise play, but it’s considerably less effective when it happens in a vacuum.

How to ABMify it

Adopting an ABM approach to retargeting means focusing your digital ad efforts on getting your TAL to visit your website. We like to call this “pretargeting.”

Once you’ve driven your TAL to your website, it’s time to retarget those visitors to (hopefully) advance them through the funnel. 

ABMify your retargeting even more by:

  • Creating digital strategies for different sales stages (open, working, etc.) with associated KPIs
  • Bringing other channels like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn into the fold with native ads

Upgrade your email segmentation to reach the entire buying committee

Another area where demand gen marketers may not see the best results is email.

Once they have something to promote, they batch and blast their entire email list hoping to generate interest in a new ebook or upcoming webinar.

They may segment their sends based on lead activities or other characteristics, but it’s usually not significant enough to drive meaningful results.

How to ABMify it

To succeed at email segmentation, your first step is acknowledging the complexity of the modern buyer’s cycle.

B2B brands rarely entrust a single person with purchasing new software or services, so it’s on marketers to engage the entire buying committee within an account.

But applying a blanket message to the entire group won’t cut it. If you’re selling to an IT team, this may include the CTO, a team lead, and an individual contributor. If you’re selling to a finance team, you’ve got the CFO, the controller, and accounts receivable to consider.

You don’t want to send any of these folks the same message. While a CFO is likely to focus on ROI (and signing authority), an admin or operations manager cares about usability.

Each person has unique pain points that require different levels of interaction and education. It’s up to marketers to map out each persona within an account and segment their lists accordingly.

Once that happens, craft emails that amplify ROI gains for members of the C-suite, and reserve game-changing product content for the people most likely to interact with your solution every day

Previous Article
How to Build a B2B LinkedIn Marketing Strategy
How to Build a B2B LinkedIn Marketing Strategy

Getting started with ABM can feel like a huge undertaking, but using the right tools can make it easier. An...

Next Article
How to Create a B2B Social Media Marketing Campaign
How to Create a B2B Social Media Marketing Campaign

And an effective social media campaign doesn’t have to take tons of time. 79% of marketers saw results by i...