Account-based marketing (ABM) is proven to drive better ROI than traditional marketing methods. Focusing your time, money and content on converting the most promising accounts will align your sales and marketing team’s efforts and create positive ripple effects across the entire company. However, launching an effective ABM campaign takes time, resources and quite often an outside expert. If you aren’t ready to launch a full ABM campaign, you can still start using ABM tactics today in your regular email campaigns to contacts in your CRM. What’s more, you can leverage ABM tactics after closing the deal to help nurture more lifetime value from the customer.
What Makes Account Based Marketing Effective?
Account based marketing delivers the right message to the right person at the right time. Sales reps work with marketing departments to identify key accounts. They use that account’s profile and behavior to identify other accounts that are a good fit and possibly ready to buy. Every prospect’s interactions with content marketing assets are tracked through tagging, linking, and first party data strategies. When certain behavior is exhibited, the relevant follow up action (and content) is delivered. While ABM is an omnichannel effort, this process should sound a lot like your email marketing strategy.
Whether it is Salesforce, Hubspot, Oracle or any of the other CRM or Marketing Automation tools out there, your company has the means to hyper target prospects, curate content, and track results. Below is a step by step guide on how to use ABM tactics to drive leads and increase customer lifetime value using just your email list and content you already have on your website or content partner library:
Identify Key Accounts and Segment Contacts
Firmographics and demographics are powerful segmentation criteria. Do you only want to target clinician’s whose practices have revenues over a certain threshold? What about audiologists only in the state of California? What if you only want to email technicians or support staff in clinical labs? Does a previous deal size or time since last purchase impact how likely a client is to buy from you again? Making sure contact profiles have as much of this information as possible is vital to running optimal email campaigns. Using contact properties to sort into multiple lists will help increase the precision with which you write and send emails.
Get Better Data Habits
If tip #1 was challenging given lack of data on your contacts, you can still overcome that. Sales reps spend up to 30% of their time researching, reporting on and prioritizing prospects. Making sure data entry habits are following best practices is crucial for Sales & Marketing teams to work well together. Review what form fields and criteria you see from leads you’ve already converted and make sure that any similarities or key indicators of your best leads can be identified and marked in a contact’s profile (ideally via automation) so future prospects can show up on your radar as great fits for outreach. If newsletter subscriptions and demo requests are common for your business, make sure your form fields and initial conversations capture and record the exact data you need to properly profile a lead.
Match The Content to The Recipient
After identifying and segmenting key accounts within your CRM, you can now focus on what content addresses their pain points most effectively. Your marketing team must work hand in hand with your sales reps to understand what content helped convince prospects to make a purchase. Consider the pain points of everyone in the buyer’s group, not just the final decision maker. Using the segmentation process above, you could decide if you should send different content to an orthodontist office with three or less practitioners in a rural area versus orthodontists with over 10 years experience in a major metropolitan area.
A/B Tests and CTA Placements
After your team has come up with specialized lists and curated content, you need to track and test your efforts! Hubspot shares many best practices to help you bundle up and deliver your content in just the right way. A/B test different subject lines and calls to action. Test out what gets opened and convey the key message promptly after opening. It’s recommended to keep the main message and call-to-action above the fold. Which pieces of content are getting clicked on and what’s being ignored? Know the specific goal of every email you send and track KPIs to help you refine your tactics and content to increase conversion rates.
Re-segment your customers!
While email is certainly a great tool for acquisition of new business, don’t overlook how useful it is for optimization and retention. If you take the time to segment your customers and not just your prospects, you’ll likely find some key trends. Who are your most profitable customers? What differentiates them from your second tier? If your second tier of clients knew 3 more things about use cases of your product, would they consider an upgrade? Maybe that warrants sending them a case study you’ve recently developed about a client who very successfully uses your product. Many of the “fresh” assets you create to help close deals or describe the newest versions of your product will also provide value to closed accounts.
While email may be a “free” channel to use, the email inbox is a highly competitive space to win attention in. Building a healthy CRM with marketing automation capabilities takes time and money but is the best weapon a company can give itself to win more business. Few channels better equip you with such precise targeting and curation controls. Use them and close more deals and increase CLV!