As B2B marketers, we look for frameworks and models to help improve how we run marketing. Unfortunately, frameworks often fall short of our needs. Frameworks usually come in two flavors, they are either based purely on inbound strategies, or they are based purely on outbound strategies. But most companies use both inbound and outbound.
It simply is not realistic to expect an organization to use just one strategy. Both strategies have its merits.
If you're doing some outbound activity, you probably think account-based marketing makes a lot of sense. It aligns growth between marketing and sales, enables marketing to be more focused in their messaging, and enables marketing to influence the entire funnel. Most of all, it helps companies grow faster.
However, pure account-based marketing can be limiting. By definition it excludes profitable inbound marketing tactics such as content marketing and SEO, and can be an expensive to build fully personalized campaigns for each target company. So there's a scaling problem here.
So, how can you get the benefits of account-based marketing yet do it at scale? The answer is Account-Based Demand.
Account-Based Demand combines the best of ABM—specificity—and the best of demand generation—scale—in one model to achieve maximum growth potential.
Account-Based Demand works best for deal sizes between $10,000 and $100,000 per year. At this deal size, you’ll often be doing a mix of ABM such as outbound calling and company-based ad targeting, but it will be large scale, targeting 10,000 or more accounts. You’ll also likely still find success with inbound marketing such as content marketing, SEO, and Google Adwords.
Getting started with Account-Based Demand is easy, it’s as simple as developing your target account list, changing some ad targeting parameters, and aligning demand across the entire funnel.
Let's now go through the steps of scaling account-based marketing with our demand framework.
Step 1: Develop Your Ideal Customer Profile and Target Account List
Before you do any marketing, it's important to know who you're targeting. Since you're already doing demand generation, you understand your personas and target audience, but now you need to add company level targeting.
This is done by partnering across marketing and other parts of the organization, like the CEO, and the sales team. It's important everyone agrees WHICH accounts are marked as priority. Do this by looking at win rates of groups of companies and developing the ideal customer profile. Since there's variance across groups of companies, it's common to grade them ABC but maintain them all as target accounts. You should be left with more than 10,000 accounts in total. If you're under this, you may want to consider a pure ABM model.
Step 2: Generate Demand For Sales
This should be one of the easier steps to implement with Account-Based Demand. Often times it's as simple as using company level targeting already available in demand channels such as LinkedIn or content syndication. Use them. Other, more unique areas of opportunity include hiring an outbound sales team (which sometimes sits under sales) and direct mail boxes to generate more appointments.
Step 3: Convert Prospects to Customers
In order to be effective with Account-Based Demand, it's important for you to be measuring and optimizing for the right metrics.
The goal of marketing should be to drive revenue. This aligns marketing with the CEO and sales and is a critical shift to being successful and driving more company value than demand generation. Once you've made this shift, marketing can now support converting prospects to customers.
Common effective tactics are taking a full-funnel approach to digital advertising. For example, you can run ads to open opportunities and invest in sales-involved field marketing such as prospect dinners. This part of Account-Based Demand requires tight alignment with sales, especially the account executives teams which may have previous experience with coordinating with your marketing team.
Step 4: Develop Advocates and Increase Customer Lifetime Value (LTV)
Part of building a sustainable business is building advocates and generating new value from existing customers. So the final step in Account-Based Demand is bringing targeted campaigns to existing customers—it shouldn't matter if revenue comes from prospects or customers. Customer marketing can include simple tactics like a customer newsletter but also field events, ads, direct mail, and all the other tactics you would normally use for new prospects.
Getting started is easy, but can require a bit of work, if you need some help LeadMD offers a free maturity audit and is available to help you define strategy, implement technology, and manage teams and marketing actions.
As you now know, aligning marketing to revenue is critically important to be successful with Account-Based Demand and this is where Bizible can help you. Bizible's marketing attribution software connects marketing actions to revenue so you can optimize for the most important business metric.