We’ve outlined the basics of what constitutes ABM and its benefits, but how should you go about implementing it in your organisation?
1. Plan your strategic approach for each account
Map out an overview of the account, its main initiatives, customer relationship landscape, products and revenue, an account competitor analysis, buying and selling points, sales opportunities, risks and targets, plus a list of next steps.
2. Build your team and get stakeholders on board
Having mutually agreed goals between sales and marketing will help to streamline your organisation and ABM implementation. Think about who will form the ABM team, account stakeholders, budget and resources, goals and KPIs.
3. Identify high-value target accounts
Finding your ideal client profile (ICP) is the first step in finding those high-value accounts. If you’re conducting inbound marketing, you will already have buyer personas (fictional composite characters based on the real data of your customers). ICPs are scaled to an organisational level and include firmographics (characteristics to group organisations into market segments including factors such as business size by revenue or number of employees, company structure, geographical location, profitability and budgets). Once you’ve developed a data backed ICP you can use it to evaluate future ABM accounts.
4. Internal prospecting
To find prospective ABM accounts, look at your existing contacts. Are there any that you want to devote further resources to? Consider recently closed deals for cross-selling/ upselling opportunities. Investigate those who are already engaging with your business by gauging website interaction and open rates – they may have connections to high value accounts. Networking business events, conferences and trade shows, whether virtual or in-person, can net valuable contacts. In addition, look at who is following your organisation on social media and consider if any of these followers could be leveraged for ABM.
5. External prospecting
When prospecting for ABM outside your organisation, there are some useful external tools to use.
- LinkedIn has search alerts to hone in on your ICP, identifying and targeting decision makers and big players. The platform also offers paid tools to reach new leads with Contact Targeting, Retargeting and Matched Audiences.
- Set up the workflow in your CRM to filter incoming leads and tag them as your ICP.
- Use buyer intent data (paid-for specialised marketing reports) to gauge those companies in your industry that may be open to your ABM.
- Pick target accounts that focus on a particular industry or geographical location. Identify the big deals in recent history that have worked out and find common attributes (industry size, structure etc) to target in future.
6. Refine your list
Too big and sales will be overwhelmed – the entire point of ABM is to work from a small pool of prospects to use resources more effectively. You may prune back contacts or develop tiers of importance.
7. Allocate resources, set KPIs and ensure a collaborative approach between sales, marketing, service and other teams.
8. Set a reporting cadence for regular tweaking and analysis of your strategy. Some commonly used KPIs include account penetration (new contacts added), account engagement, deal creation, deal-to-close time, percentage of deals closed and net new revenue.
With all of these measures in place, your ABM campaign is well on the way to success, optimising the efforts of your sales and marketing teams, boost revenue and driving ROI efficiently.