3 best practices for B2B ABM marketers
Full-funnel strategies for using data and insights to engage your top B2B prospects.
B2B marketers use account-based marketing (ABM) to engage decision makers in organizations they deem most likely to buy. ABM provides a competitive edge when practitioners:
- Have achieved a meaningful level of brand awareness in the market,
- Deliver messages that resonate with prospects and demonstrate intent,
- Close the deal by addressing pain points/solving problems.
Leading with awareness
Brand awareness is a requirement for successful ABM campaigns.
“You really need to have a baseline level of awareness in the marketplace,” said Megan Creighton, head of digital strategy for The Ricciardi Group, a boutique B2B marketing agency, who spoke at The MarTech Conference. “People really need to know who you are and you need to be part of the conversation in order for any of your downstream programs to really thrive.”
When you engage your ideal customer, they should know about you.
“In order for your message to be well received, I think that the person receiving it has to really feel that you’re a credible person to deliver that message in order for them to buy,” said Creighton. “So, being able to bolster your position in the marketplace is what is going to make your thought leadership resonate and what’s going to make that person on the receiving end feel more comfortable about interacting with your brand and wanting to go on that buying journey process with your brand.”
Top-of-funnel awareness messaging should prepare the way for and be consistent with messaging delivered further down the funnel, e.g. engagement, nurturing audiences and, ultimately, sales presentations.
“Once we raise the profile of the brand and have that baseline awareness, then we are able to get hyper-targeted from there, which is the fun part,” Creighton said.
Messaging has to resonate
To get the most out of any engagement with a prospect, the message has to resonate. So, marketers should use the data they have to create messages that do just that.
Dig deeper: How to use AI and machine learning to personalize and optimize campaigns
“Accounts are made up of people who are making the decisions and they have preferences on how they want to be [reached],” said Creighton.
Content should demonstrate awareness of the market in order to create a personal connection. Website content, social media messages, email, and other communications must deliver consistent messages in order to achieve maximum success.
Researching the market can also help identify key prospects. B2B brands should consider content syndication programs and surveys with customized questions that yield insights when prospects engage with this content.
“Identify…who was really showing that they were actively researching and showing a high intent for a solution that the brand is offering,” Creighton said.
Message your ability to address challenges
Once a prospect is aware of your solution, has engaged and demonstrated intent, addressing pain points and articulating the benefits of your solution become the mission.
“Now that we’ve identified that [accounts] are also expressing a level of intent… they may be more likely to give us more information,” said Creighton.
Deeper market analysis can also be prioritized. For instance, sales for a product or service related to your business’s offerings could be on the rise. Knowing who among your prospects is showing intent for those related products will help you prioritize the prospects your business should target.
Data from customer interactions and surveys will help identify topics and content for nurturing campaigns and for audience segmentation.
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