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Account-based marketing (ABM) is a strategy that involves the use of personalized and highly targeted campaigns to win accounts. As a strategic approach, ABM is based on the idea that a customer account or individual prospect can be viewed as a “market of one”. In the past few years, ABM has emerged as a popular new marketing strategy for business-to-business (B2B) marketing teams.
According to research conducted by the Altera Group, 97 percent of B2B marketers reported that ABM had a higher return on investment (ROI) than other marketing initiatives. The 2014 ITSMA Account-Based Marketing Survey also reported that ABM offers the highest (ROI) of all the B2B marketing tactics and strategies. Aberdeen conducted research and found that 75 percent of customers prefer personalized offers, which are a key component of the ABM strategy. Research has consistently shown that ABM is very effective for B2B companies in a number of different industries and sectors.
While ABM has certainly proven to be an effective marketing strategy, it can be difficult to execute properly. ABM strategies and tactics are often sophisticated and complex. Furthermore, many B2B marketing teams report that there is a steep learning curve. One reason ABM has a learning curve is because it is so different in comparison to traditional strategies, which typically focus on reaching out to as many customer accounts and prospects as possible. All of these facts highlight the importance of taking advantage of ABM courses, education, and other training options for B2B marketing teams. These educational resources can mean the difference between success and failure when it comes to the execution of ABM strategies and tactics. Some examples of ABM training materials include the Account Based Marketing for Dummies book, an account based marketing course, and account based marketing PPT.
ABM training materials make it possible for teams to learn account based marketing, learn the fundamentals of account-based marketing, the terminology, and the basic concepts. A quality ABM training course, for example, will provide your B2B marketing team with an overview of how ABM works, the best practices, and how to successfully execute this marketing strategy in the real world.
Account Based Marketing
Account based marketing was developed in the early 2000s as a method for combining marketing and sales. As stated above, B2B marketers traditionally attempt to cast a wide net when it comes to their marketing campaigns. However, ABM is an alternate strategy that emphasizes focusing resources on a few select accounts in a market. Marketing and sales resources are used to create personalized campaigns for each of the targeted accounts. The benefits of account based marketing are discussed below.
Better Use of Resources
One of the main benefits of ABM is that it tends to be a better use of resources. ABM is very targeted, which enables B2B marketers to use their resources more effectively.
Greater Customer Satisfaction
Many B2B marketers report greater customer satisfaction after adopting an ABM approach. The main objective of account based marketing is the personalization of all communications and messages to individual accounts. This personalization leads to greater customer satisfaction and encourages targeted customers to engage with the content.
Easy to Track Progress Towards Goals
Working with data generated from an ABM program tends to be easier. Due to the very nature of ABM, you will have data from a small set of individual accounts. You will probably find it easier to process and analyze data to determine the success of your campaigns.
Easier Sales Alignment
If your goal is to align marketing and sales, ABM is probably the best approach. A B2B marketing team executing an ABM strategy will need to adopt common sales strategies and tactics. For example, a B2B marketer will need to figure out the most effective ways to target individual accounts, so that they generate revenue for the company.
There are many different ABM channels that B2B marketing teams can use. One example is ABM on LinkedIn. ABM LinkedIn advertising and account based LinkedIn targeting are very popular among B2B SaaS marketing teams as an ABM SaaS strategy. Are you new to LinkedIn? Learning account based marketing is recommended to be your first step, then see how you can use this channel for your ABM strategy. LinkedIn account targeting makes it possible for B2B marketing teams to scale their ABM programs quickly and efficiently, increasing the ROI significantly.
The Information Technology Services Marketing Association (ITSMA) is considered a key leader in the world of B2B marketing. ITSMA was established in the early 1990s when B2B services marketing was just emerging. The ITSMA team consists of expert marketers, consultants, analysts, and trainers with in-depth experience when it comes to B2B solutions and services.
ITSMA is an excellent resource for all types of ABM training materials. ITSMA offers ABM certification and mentoring resources. For example, the ITSMA ABM Certification and Mentoring program will provide your B2B marketers with a 90-day immersion into the basic knowledge and skills that they will need to execute an ABM strategy. The program consists of a two-day workshop, several webinars, and on-site coaching and mentoring. Experts will help your B2B marketers create an ABM plan for your company. ITSMA offers both private and public programs. Your B2B marketers can participate in the ITSMA ABM Certification and Mentoring program online or in-person.
ITSMA also offers ABM education and training. The custom training will teach your B2B marketers about sales enablement, metrics, value propositions, thought leadership, campaign management, and other important ABM capabilities. The coaching program will offer B2B marketers weekly check-ins, strategic assessments, and development plans. ITSMA has been a trailblazer in the world of ABM since 2003. ITSMA has trained the teams and leaders of many of the world’s best when it comes to ABM.
There are also account based marketing case studies for B2B marketing teams, ABM examples, and ABM basics on the ITSMA blog.
Account Based Marketing Tactics
It is important that B2B marketing teams have a good understanding of the strategy and framework before attempting to execute account based marketing tactics. Effective ABM strategies tend to be complex and sophisticated. Therefore, it is essential for B2B marketing teams to undergo thorough preparation to prevent the waste of time and resources.
Account based marketing tactics include tailoring content based on the needs of the target audience, using data to create personalized reports for targeted accounts, customizing customer testimonials for different tiers or target accounts, producing thought leadership videos, and consider using physical gifts to establish a connection with individual prospects. The term personalization in account based marketing means creating content and materials for markets of one, also referred to as individual accounts. Personalization is the key to success for ABM and B2B marketing.
There are many account based marketing examples online in the form of case studies. From these account based marketing examples, your B2B marketing team can learn about the strategies and frameworks underlying common account based marketing tactics.
You should also consider having an ABM expert train or coach your B2B marketing team about account based marketing tactics and how to best execute them. An ABM expert will provide your B2B marketing team with strong ABM foundations. That way, your team will be able to tweak the most popular account based marketing tactics for optimal success when employed for your company.
The emergence of ABM as a popular B2B marketing strategy has led to the emergence of many ABM software vendors. Some examples of these ABM software vendors include account based marketing HubSpot, Demandbase, and Terminus. The leading ABM software vendors offer customers and sometimes non-customers a free ABM course.
Demandbase is an example of an ABM software vendor that offers a free ABM course. The free Demandbase ABM course will give you a sense of what the process of earning Demandbase ABM certification or Demand base ABM certification will look like. Completing this free ABM course will also provide you with insight in terms of the quality of Demandbase support, Demandbase training, and Demandbase courses.
Another example is Terminus, which offers the FlipMyFunnel community and blog. There is also a podcast that you can tune into daily to learn about ABM and B2B marketing. The FlipMyFunnel course will teach you the basics of the account based marketing framework. FlipMyFunnel emphasizes the idea of looking at the sales and marketing funnel in an entirely new way. The elements of the account-based funnel include the identification of the best-fit customers, the expansion of outreach to target companies, the engagement of target accounts with tailored content and channels, and the conversion of customers into advocates.
There are several courses and certifications offered online. By completing ABM certification free classes, an account based marketing online course, the best ABM certification, an ABM advanced certification, an ABM certification foundations course, or the ABM foundations certification, you and your team will learn the knowledge and skills necessary to build a strategy and execution plan that is optimal for your business.
ABM conferences are great opportunities for your B2B marketing team to receive training. ABM conferences, roadshows, and events occur all over the United States. There are also ABM conferences in cities out of the United States like London. Whether a B2B marketer should go to an ABM conference or join an ABM course London should depend on their learning style and the amount of experience they have when it comes to ABM. If a B2B marketer learns best with hands-on training, a conference might be the best choice. On the other hand, if a B2B marketer prefers self-guidance and a quieter setting, an online course is probably the best choice for them.
One advantage of ABM conferences over courses is that the material taught at conferences tend to be more innovative and up-to-date. In contrast, it can take a while to update online courses to reflect new trends in the world of ABM. Therefore, if you want your B2B marketing team to always “be in the know” when it comes to the latest ABM trends, it is a good idea to have them to go to ABM conferences. Regularly attending ABM conferences, roadshows, and events can help your B2B marketing team remain competitive in terms of ABM strategies and tactics employed.
However, if you want your B2B marketing team to have a strong foundation when it comes to ABM, it may be a better idea to have them complete an online course first. The online course should provide your team members with the foundation they need to make the most of ABM conferences, trade shows, and events.
Some examples of ABM conference 2019 for ABM B2B training include ITSMA’s 2019 ABM Forum and the ABM Innovation Summit 2019. These conferences are held annually, so if your B2B marketing team misses a conference one year, they will still be able to attend the following year. There are also ABM conferences that you can attend virtually if you cannot make it in-person.