Last week we, in partnership with Terminus, launched the ABM Metrics Survey to help the ABM community better understand the space, where the industry is as a whole, and to help B2B marketers who aren’t yet doing ABM understand if ABM is right for them.
The survey will be open for several more weeks, but as responses have already started to come in, we’d like to share some of the early trends that we’re seeing.
If you’d like to help the community and have your voice heard, please take the 16 question survey. It should take no longer than 5 minutes. When the survey closes, we’ll publish a report and you’ll be the first to get it!
Let’s get right into the data.
Who is doing ABM?
One of the best indicators of whether your marketing team should be investing in an ABM strategy is the length of your marketing and sales cycle. Typically, the longer the sales cycle, the more roles are involved on the buyer side, which makes account-based targeting and account-based measurement vital to success.
As you can see in the chart, it looks like the ABM sweet spot is a marketing and sales cycle of 1-4 months. The shorter end of that can still be effectively marketed to using a demand gen or pipeline marketing strategy, and longer than that may not be as conducive to “campaigns” which typically don’t last that long.
However, these are still early results, so the trend may change. If you’ve got something to say about the relationship between your sales cycle and ABM fit, let us know by taking the survey.
Another thing we’ve noticed about the early results is that there seems to be a relationship between organizations that do ABM and organizations that have alignment between their marketing and sales teams. The survey results do not demonstrate causation, only correlation, so this may be a chicken or the egg type scenario -- it takes some amount of internal alignment to execute an ABM strategy, but at the same time, deciding to implement an ABM strategy will certainly bring more alignment to the two departments.
It’s still the early days in ABM
If you’ve been following B2B marketing news over the last couple of years, I’m sure you have noticed the rapid rise of ABM. However, the early results of this survey show that ABM still has a lot of room to grow.
Of the respondents who do ABM, the majority are doing relatively little ABM as a proportion of their entire marketing efforts. Over half of the respondents report that ABM only makes up about 20% of their total marketing efforts. When we do this survey again next year, we expect to see that ABM accounts for a much higher percentage of respondents’ marketing efforts.
To the same point, when asked whether they expect to be doing more ABM in the next 6 months, the vast majority said they expected to be doing more. In fact, over 40% said they expect to be doing “a lot more” ABM in just 6 months. For many organizations, an ABM strategy has always been the goal -- now, there are the tools and technology that allow them to execute.
Measuring ABM success
The last insight from the early results we’d like to share is about ABM measurement. What metrics do B2B marketers who are doing ABM use to measure their success? According to the early respondents, it’s metrics that are pretty deep in the funnel. They are primarily using ABM to turn more leads into opportunities and more opportunities into revenue-generating customers. You’ll notice that these metrics look a lot like sales team metrics...which brings us back to the role of marketing and sales alignment in successful ABM.
When the marketing team and the sales team are speaking the same language and using the same metrics, everything in the organization runs more smoothly. And ABM plays a major role in facilitating that alignment.