For many startups For small and medium-sized businesses, successfully setting up account-based marketing strategies may seem like a far-fetched dream. Startups still struggling to find the right product for the market would not dream of being able to define and map the ideal customer profile (ICP) clearly enough. At the same time, small and medium businesses often lack the resources to invest in multi-point content marketing strategies.
Small businesses and startups usually don’t employ full marketing teams, and their salespeople are tired of time anyway. For them, Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is something that is intended for companies that employ corporate marketing teams and can handle large marketing budgets.
This couldn’t be further from the truth, and startups and SMEs can and should invest in ABM’s strategies. With a few smart growth tactics and smart tools in place, ABM Strategies don’t have to break the bank to succeed.
Account-based approaches thrive when you adjust your mindset and focus on long-term investments and relationship building. One way to do this is to create a (sense) of community.
However, there are some distinguishing characteristics that your business must have before investing in ABM:
- Greater than average deal sizes or customer value make ABM more worthwhile. If you’re working with a long tail business model, this probably isn’t for you.
- Businesses with long sales cycles are well suited to ABM strategies. The longer the sales cycle, the more important it is to meet the needs of key accounts with personalized content and communicate across multiple channels and at multiple touchpoints.
- Complex purchasing commissions are also prone to marketing in an overly personal way. Sprinkle marketing and praying here won’t do you any good.
- ABM strategies work best when sales, marketing, and service are fully aligned. Is your organization convinced by the idea of RevOps? Good, ABM might be the way to go.
In short, the points above illustrate what can be described as the top segment of B2B companies. It is best for startups and SMEs that match these characteristics to consider the growth tactics we explain below.
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What is ABM? What about ABS? And what is this ABX job?!
Before we jump into practical techniques and actionable tips for getting started with ABM, let’s take a look at some definitions to get a clearer picture of what we’re talking about.
Account-based marketing is a business strategy, sometimes referred to as master account marketing, in which companies focus marketing resources on specific goals (key accounts) in the market.
This is like turning a traditional internal marketing funnel upside down. Instead of generating, segmenting and activating leads and then selling them to them, ABM takes the opposite approach. You identify specific key accounts, build relationships with these goals, and then sell them to your network.
It also means producing highly relevant and highly personalized marketing content for all types of decision makers at all points of the customer journey.
Account Based Sales (ABS)
Account-based selling is a B2B sales model that takes a similar approach and focuses on selling to the same main accounts. Patience is the name of the game here. Instead of trying to schedule this demo as quickly as possible, your salespeople will invest in relationships.
This highly personal and strategic process relies on the personalized marketing content we mentioned. Sales and marketing alignment is key to the successful implementation of account-based sales strategies.
Marketing and sales teams will benefit from defining and reporting on common goals and even KPIs.
Account Based Experience (ABX)
Account-based revenue generation will work best when you have company-wide purchasing from not only your sales and marketing departments, but a customer success team as well. This helps deliver a personalized experience for your key accounts during an overall buying journey that continues after purchase.