Resources for Visibility & Digital Marketing
Account Based Marketing
Marketing strategies undergo significant changes depending on the target audience to which they are directed. Each audience has a profile, and marketing must be adapted to their specific characteristics, taking into account their circumstances, lifestyle, needs and concerns.
There are clear differences between the public B2C and B2B, so it is logical to think that companies should use different resources to reach one or another target. The B2B buyer is usually a qualified buyer, who compares, studies and analyzes the product. More time is taken in the decision making process, and sales usually take a longer time than B2C sales.
It is precisely in the context of B2B that Accout Based Marketing (ABM) has its place.
What is Account Based Marketing?
Account Based Marketing is a type of strategy that focuses on the accounts, in other words, the companies it aims to reach.
Traditional marketing focuses its efforts on reaching a target audience that shares common characteristics. Of that target, only a part will make the conversion. On the contrary, ABM first selects the accounts, or potential customers, establishes relationships and links with them and finally generates the right environment for the sales opportunity to occur.
We can understand ABM as a reformulation of inbound marketing oriented towards companies that carry out a B2B commercial activity, and it requires close coordination between marketing and sales teams.
Inbound Marketing and Account Based Marketing
These two methods complement each other, and together they are more effective. Furthermore, they share common characteristics, as both require a study and the definition of the profiles to be addressed. If inbound marketing analyses the psycho-demographic aspects of its profiles, ABM analyses aspects such as the companies' track record, goals and philosophy in order to determine its target audience.
And that is, Although ABM is aimed at accounts (companies), one should not lose sight of the fact that companies are made up of peopleThese are the ones who ultimately make decisions within the company based on objective criteria, productivity and trust.
It is precisely in the context of B2B that Accout Based Marketing (ABM) has its place
The company's blog, its website, its profiles in social networks, its relationship with customers, its marketing strategies and even the geographical area to which they delimit their activity, provide us with information to know what strategic decisions have been taken in the company. All this in order to understand their needs and determine how our product or service fits into their growth strategy.
Differences between Inbound Marketing and ABM
It is true that they are complementary strategies, and that they share similarities, but there are also differences between them:
- The inbound marketing is aimed at a large market while ABM is aimed at a smaller, selected market
- Inbound marketing is aimed at customers who want to meet a specific need, while ABM focuses on specific companies or niche companies.
- One has a segmented market as a target audience. The other is oriented towards an audience made up of companies (accounts), much smaller in number than the inbound marketing target audience
- ABM requires close collaboration between the marketing and sales departments. Inbound marketing, on the other hand, requires marketing and advertising strategies
- The targed of inbound marketing is usually end consumers, i.e. a B2C marketplace, while the ABM is aimed at a B2B marketplace.
The Sales Cycle in Account Based Marketing
We have already talked about the similarities between ABM and inbound marketing, we also know a little bit about the differences between them, so it is to be expected that the Account Based Marketing purchase process has its own and differentiated phases. Above all, taking into account the characteristics that we address to a qualified public, and we are talking about longer purchase processes.
The phases of ABM
- Account identification: It's about identifying the companies we want to target in our commercial efforts. We are talking about limiting the number of companies. To do this, we can take into account the psycho-demographic criteria of buyer person of these companies, productive sectors, size of the company, trajectory, geolocation, its family of products, activity or by the extension of its market.
- Establishing relationshipsThe first contact with the company, and more specifically with the buyer person. Sometimes communication does not have to be direct, but through other people who work or have a close working relationship with the buyer person of the target company. It's simply a matter of making ourselves known.
- Personalization of the messages: The first thing to bear in mind is that this type of operation takes quite a long time due to the characteristics of the buyer. Taking this into consideration, we reach the stage where the messages are personalized and we connect with the buyer or his environment. The first value proposals appear, such as consultancies, and the usual communication channels of companies are used.
- Conversion: At this stage, we have already created the environment of trust. The company knows us, it knows our activity, our product and it is time to generate the sales opportunity. We make our product known and its positive impact on the productivity, visibility or competitiveness of the company.
Benefits of Account Based Marketing
- Quality relationships are maintained with the prospective clients. It's about quality versus quantity. Moreover, these relationships allow us to access other companies or future collaborations.
- Loss of resources is minimized. This has a direct impact on the improvement of our productivity, since we focus our efforts on companies with which we have a greater chance of closing sales.
- From the first moment the communication campaigns are very defined, so its impact is usually quite high.
- The return on investment is much higher compared to traditional marketing. Customized campaigns and the collaboration of the sales team, and even technical staff, contribute to a high ROI.
In short, if your target audience is businesses or buyer person of those companies uses ABM strategies. Account Based Marketing will help you close sales in your B2B operations. But always keep in mind that the purchase cycle is much longer. Measuring the results and evaluating their effectiveness will help you improve your strategies.
Read more about B2B Marketing
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