As much as marketing reports exist to add measurability to a bunch of actitivities, there’s nothing more gratifying than showing proof of success. For account-based marketing, the proof is in accelerated deal velocities and the rate of new deals.
Measuring success is the final step, but the seeds for data accuracy and actionable reporting are planted early.
In this post we cover the tracking and metrics you need to understand what great account-based marketing looks like -- most importantly, what great ABM should look like at your company.
We’ll talk about measuring account coverage, engagement, influence, and revenue, all of which helps marketers understand how to increase deal velocity and close rates.
How To Measure Account Coverage In Account-Based Marketing
The foundation for account-based marketing is reaching each target account and every stakeholder within your target accounts.
Measuring this is important because you’ll later understand whom you engaged with and how much, gaining intel for future campaigns. You’ll know how much engagement it took and what roles they played in the organization and deal.
Two coverage metrics are: percent of key names in target accounts you’ve gained opt-in permission with, and percentage of the total number of target accounts identified in your target market/segment.
The trend you want to see is that both percentages are increasing, meaning you’ve accounted for every key stakeholder in an account and you’re expanding your list of accounts to include as many qualified companies as possible.
Measuring coverage is key to building a sustainable account-based marketing program, and so too is refining the coverage metric itself to ensure the target accounts align with the current product, messaging, and personas. The last thing you want is to have great account coverage, only to have your investment in engaging these accounts to end up as wasted spend.
The chart below illustrates the difference between account penetration, i.e. reaching as many stakeholders in an account as possible, and total number of accounts, i.e. identifying all the accounts you should target.
Fast-growing companies should aim to be in the top the right quadrant. Here you’ve reached the most stakeholders within each account, and you have targeted as many accounts as your budget can handle, or the entire segment you’ve identified.
You also want to know what content they engage with and when in the sales process they engage. Knowing this, you can refine your coverage metric to include or exclude certain stakeholders and define the type of content offer that resonates, eliminating wasted spending on engagement that is fruitless.
How To Measure ABM Engagement
ABM reporting is understanding what gets target accounts to take action.
Action is the strongest indicator for success. In marketing, if you can motivate action and measure it, you’ve worked yourself out of a job. Ok, well not exactly, but close because with measurability comes optimization.
Account-based marketing metrics are closely related to sales metrics. This is especially true when measuring increases in engagement.
According to Engagio, total minutes responding to marketing activities and engaging with the product or sales team is the metric that should be used to measure ABM and middle-of-funnel performance.
Click through rates, product page visits, content downloads, answer rates to sales calls, call durations, and email reply rates are also ways to measure engagement. The key is to set up tracking correctly for your ABM campaigns.
Engagement tells you whether your ABM campaign motivated action. Increasing engagement with sales or marketing assets is a sign that you achieved what is so difficult in marketing: getting people to do stuff.
The Influence Metrics
Part of the appeal of ABM is to leverage the relationships and brand affinity fostered through targeted outreach.
To understand whether your ABM campaigns influence prospects to become customers, you should measure deal velocity and close rate for ABM campaigns and compare it to non-ABM campaigns.
To do this well you need to connect data from the top to the bottom of the funnel, and assign credit to each of the touchpoints associated with your ABM program.
Without tracking and attribution you simply cannot compare the results of your ABM campaigns with the rest of marketing. And improving your ABM program becomes much more difficult.
Online and offline attribution data provides the account-based marketing metrics that help marketers improve their programs.
The chart below is an example mock up of tracking deal velocity (as measured by average sales cycle length) and monthly spend on ABM activities. The left blue rectangle highlights the sharp increase in monthly ABM spend taking place before June.
The rectangle to the right identifies when marketers see the benefit in the form of a sharp decline in average sales cycle, measured in days (representing a higher deal velocity).
Note that this chart assumes sales cycle length does not decrease immediately after increasing ABM spending. For this example, the company spends more between March and June, and then enjoys the benefits in starting in July.
While this is for example purposes, it does show you how you can think about measuring the results of your ABM activities.
A good b2b marketing report is actionable. And at the end of the day, leadership wants to know whether ABM works. A good report will show performance of ABM compared to other campaigns AND whether the ABM program itself is improving.
Touchpoints Data and Account-Based Marketing
The foundation for many account-based marketing metrics is touchpoints data. Whether online or offline, marketers need to set up tracking for every touchpoint. Because set-up is different depending on your channels, create a taxonomy to organize your channels and then go about creating the tags connecting your tracking to your CRM.
Touchpoints data tells you in real time who in each account is being engaged with, and which specific ABM campaign they engage with. Finally, you can attribute engagement and revenue back to your marketing activities to isolate your highest performing campaigns.
Account-based marketing is a hot topic and to make it even more appealing is to prove its value. This is done through proper attention to the right metrics, and an attribution solution that measures revenue generated and influenced by ABM.