What does an account-based marketing (ABM) expert’s technology stack look like?
BetterWorks is a human capital management platform that allows companies to better manage their goals and employee feedback. Their platform creates high-performing, engaged teams to drive better results.
Masha Finkelstein is the demand generation lead at BetterWorks and an account-based marketing (ABM) expert. She has over ten years of B2B and B2C marketing experience and, in my opinion, represents the marketing profile of the future: deep understanding of digital, analytics, and martech combined with empathy, discipline, and communication skills. She is comfortable working cross-functionally and across a variety of marketing strategies. All-in-all, she’s a full-stack marketer.
And Masha has the hardware to prove it. In 2016, she won an ABMie for Best Female Marketer, and she was named an ABM Superhero in 2017. Masha is also a scientist by training and an accomplished pianist.
Now, let’s hear from Masha Finkelstein about how BetterWorks does account-based marketing (ABM).
Give us a quick overview of your ABM efforts.
We launched our ABM program a little over a year ago. Initially, we decided to try account-based marketing to better go after enterprise accounts.
We began by targeting a list of 1,000 enterprise accounts determined by sales. Over the course of the past year, data showed us that mid-market is a much better target segment for BetterWorks. As you can imagine, there are thousands, if not millions, of mid-market companies in the world, so we needed a way to prioritize which of those prospects to pursue.
We decided to use predictive account scoring to help figure out which accounts are more likely to convert and recently started working with Datanyze on that front. Datanyze scores and grades all of our accounts and allows us to create an “A” and “B” companies lists to target with our ABM engagement programs.
Our account-based marketing program is a cross-functional effort. Marketing works very closely with our sales development, design, and customer success teams. To make ABM successful, it is critical to have cross-functional buy-in and executive support. You cannot do ABM alone!
[Tweet “”To make #ABM successful, it is critical to have cross-functional buy-in.” – @masha3003″]
How do you use the tools in your account-based marketing stack?
Marketing is trying to drive demand and visits to our site from the A and B rated accounts in our target geographies.
We use digital advertising as the as the first step to build awareness and get exposure of BetterWorks’ brand in front of our target prospects. Terminus is the key advertising tool to ensure that we are reaching all of the decision makers in a target account and it only requires us to input the accounts we want to target — no contact data required. We also use AdWords and Twitter to reach our targets through paid search and social channels, and if we have decision makers’ email addresses, we’ll use AdRoll to retarget them as well.
We use Marketo to send marketing emails to invite warmer contacts to upcoming webinars and events, which we host on ON24, Cvent, and Eventbrite. Otherwise, our sales development representatives will reach out with personalized emails through Outreach, direct calls, and LinkedIn InMails.
This coming year, we’re working to further integrate our marketing efforts to move targeted accounts through the marketing and sales funnel in a more efficient and seamless way.
I know you’re very data-driven. How do you measure your results?
We use three tools to measure our ABM program performance:
Marketo’s RTP is important for understanding what portion of our website traffic is coming from the target accounts. It is basic, top-of-funnel information that is baseline for success and a great indicator of awareness.
LeanData has an account-based marketing analytics tool called Clarity. It helps us track all of the touches on an account from both marketing and sales to better understand how we’re interacting as a company and what is moving the needle.
We use Bizible for channel analysis. It helps us attribute the correct value to given marketing touches and track overall channel and program ROI using first-touch, multi-touch, U-shaped, or W-shaped attribution models.
To see more tools to help you measure your account-based marketing success, check out the Terminus Cloud for ABM. ☁️️
You have a very sophisticated technology stack. How did you go about building your account-based marketing stack?
Our journey started at 2015 #FlipMyFunnel conference in San Francisco. It coincided with the beginning of our ABM initiative. As we were exploring which tools and platforms to purchase, we leaned on G2 Crowd for research.
We already had Marketo. The first true ABM platform we added was Terminus. Then, we added LeanData to route leads to the accounts. We wanted to ensure that we had the data quality needed, so we added Reachforce. These tools formed the core elements of our ABM stack.
Then we started exploring ways for our other existing tools to support ABM — for instance, using AdWords list uploads and AdRoll and Twitter custom audiences features for better targeting.
As our target segment expanded, we added Datanyze for predictive scoring for our mid-market efforts.
What tools are most critical for your ABM programs?
Terminus is the best for digital advertising and account engagement. No other solution engages decision makers with the same targeting capabilities and efficiency. It was the first pure ABM platform that we added to our stack and it was hugely impactful.
LinkedIn has become very effective for us with sponsored content. It is a perfect complement to our other advertising efforts.
For analysis, I love Bizible and LeanData for understanding the buyer’s journey and understanding the ROI of various channels. They help me prove what I’m doing is working and validates our spend across technology and media.
Finally, LookbookHQ is very valuable for driving engagement with content and understanding what resonates. You need tools that reach decision makers and influencers like Terminus, but once you reach them having a tool like LookBookHQ is vital. It is like putting your content on drugs. When people start binging you can see what is working. It is personalized and provides your audience options for what to read so you can what works.
[Tweet “@BetterWorks’ top 5 #ABM tools: @Terminus @LinkedInB2B @Bizible @LeanData & @LookBookHQ”]
You’ve added quite a few tools in a short time period. How have you ensured successful implementation?
First of all, everything has to work with either our Salesforce CRM or Marketo.
Use your time with the vendor’s customer success team wisely. They’re there to help you, so I always come prepared to get the most out of those calls. I know a lot of people don’t value their CS time because they’re busy, and that’s a big missed opportunity.
We’ve bought tools that we no longer use even though they were good solutions. This happens when there is not cross-functional team alignment and buy-in. With ABM, you need buy-in across marketing and sales to ensure that you get the most out of the technology.
[Tweet “How did @BetterWorks build a robust ABM tech stack so quickly? @masha3003 explains”]
What advice do you have for others starting an account-based marketing program?
Start by getting support from your executive team. Then identify key people who can help drive your ABM initiative forward. It cannot be done by marketing alone.
Having budget allocated to the initiative is also important. Much of the typical marketing budget is about driving inbound. ABM needs specific budget because it is a different approach and leads to different measures of success. With specific budget for ABM, you can show the ROI more easily. But, you need to be patient to see the results.
Go to conferences like #FlipMyFunnel and talk to others. You will learn so much from these experiences and build a network of folks who are thinking about similar topics that you can go to for help.
The more the personalized and targeted your ABM is, the better the results. While it may be obvious, if you can get the right content at the right time to the right people, you are golden. But, that is easier said than done!
[Tweet “”The more the personalized & targeted your #ABM is, the better the results.” – @masha3003″]
What’s next for your ABM stack?
Right now, we’re adding direct mail with PFL to complement our digital advertising. We’ve done before in a one-off way, but it was too painful. PFL will let us automate that process and make it easy.
Browse all the best account-based marketing technology in the Terminus Cloud for ABM. ☁️️
Grade Your Own Account-Based Marketing Stack
Masha Finkelstein and her Superhero team at BetterWorks clearly know their stuff when it comes to ABM and marketing technology. How does your martech stack stack up? Use the ABM Stack Grader to visualize your stack, discover any gaps in your technology, and explore different B2B marketing and sales tools. Click the banner below to get started.