The Latest from the ABM Experts
January 29, 2019
Personalization at Scale? Learn How Uberflip Scales Targeted ABM
Written by Sangram Vajre
In this episode of the #FlipMyFunnel podcast, Heidi Vandermeer shares how her team at Uberflip scaled their account-based marketing program to reach their target accounts programmatically.
Putting together a successful account-based marketing (ABM) campaign is one thing. Doing it at scale is another thing entirely.
Heidi Vandermeer and her team at Uberflip recently pulled off an incredible ABM campaign at scale—and she told us on the #FlipMyFunnel Podcast all about how she won the ABMie award for Best ABM Campaign at Scale. As every account-based marketer knows, this is a huge achievement.
“It’s definitely something that we had to build up to,” Heidi said. “We went through a lot of experimentation on the way.”
200,000 ad impressions.
500 target accounts reached.
60 meetings set.
40+ new opportunities.
So, how did Heidi and her team do it?
“I loved the strategic sales role that I was in, but I felt we could do things more efficiently if we had a marketer helping us out with the strategy, the collateral, and running campaigns on these accounts,” she said.
What Heidi created was a collaborative, creative, cross-department mission to bring efficiency to ABM at scale.
A Multichannel Approach to Marketing
Heidi’s multichannel approach included direct mail, customized web experiences, and a tailored sales approach.
“We had awareness programs that were focused on brand awareness as well as expansion of contacts within our target accounts,” Heidi said.
They also had a direct mail and an offer that they used to help book demos with the sales team. The customized web experiences also promoted that offer.
Finally, the tailored sales outreach was really relevant to the offers and the web experience they provided.
“It was a coordinated outreach from a marketing perspective as well as sales,” she said. “There was a mix all across the different stages of awareness.”
Tiering Target Accounts for ABM
The main part of the methodology was very persona-focused. The second part was generalized messaging for education and awareness.
Heidi developed a three-tiered approach to targeting the whopping 500 accounts.
These are the highly strategic accounts. Most companies only have the resources to go after a handful of these.
On these accounts, they took more of a one-to-few approach with account-based marketing.
The majority of the accounts they focused on were Tier Two.
These have a more programmatic approach, not as segmented or personalized for this specific campaign.
“That was our first basis for selection, that we’re focusing on this specific tier,” Heidi explained.
Personalizing Marketing and Sales Outreach
From there, they identified different personas through their marketing programs early on. After they selected the tier, then they selected the persona.
Personalized outreach was tailored to three specific groups for the campaign:
- People involved with B2B content marketing
- People focused on demand or lead generation
- The CMO
The direct mail cards, sales outreach emails, and custom web experiences were all individually tailored to a person’s role within the organization.
“We had these three different streams of outreach that we did for each of those,” Heidi said. “And at a higher level, we still had overarching messaging to help drive that engagement.”
Personalization, Personalization, Personalization
Heidi’s award-winning strategy was heavily based on personalization, especially with the direct mail.
“We had three different versions of the card and we tailored each one to what the person is focused on and what a benefit is to their role related to our product,” Heidi said.
They altered the copy on their email templates to focus on those specific roles and their needs. And they could also add in separate details a bit more personalized to that account.
“For example,” she said, “if they’re using a specific technology that we integrate with or if we know someone in their space that is using our product that can be used as a reference or a good customer story, our sales reps could add that in to personalize it further.”
The customized web experiences were also personalized. They created three main pages with content that related to those three roles.
Start Small & Use Your Resources
Heidi’s biggest piece of advice?
“Aligning with sales was really big for this campaign,” Heidi explained.
Step one was the pilot with a smaller group of business development reps and about a third of the team involved. The pilot audience was key in determining any shortcomings, gaps, or weak spots.
“We got a lot of feedback right out of the gate before we expanded to the rest of our accounts,” she said.
Working collaboratively to ensure that sales was meeting their goals was also a big step to refining the campaign process.
“It definitely wasn’t just me executing the whole multichannel approach,” Heidi said. “I’m lucky that I have a great team here at Uberflip.”
From copy editing to creative input from the CMO, Heidi had so many people involved in the campaign. It required a lot of coordination and listening to feedback so that everyone on the team could succeed.
Some account-based marketers struggle with doing all this at scale. Using tech and automation can help save time and increase efficiency.
“Some of the biggest things that helped us throughout this process as we scaled this with 500 different accounts and three different personas was the technology that we were using,” Heidi said.
They used Terminus for a lot of their account-based marketing ads.
They used Sendoso for direct mail.
And they used their own tool, Uberflip, for building out some of the customized web experiences.
Heidi said being able to rely on all these technologies made them “superhuman” for doing so much effective work within the timeframe.
“In terms of the success of the campaign overall, knowing your business, knowing your internal sales process, and finding that creative hook that can get them to engage are the three things that I think made this campaign successful,” Heidi said.