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What exactly is account-based marketing, or ABM, and why are B2B marketers so enthusiastic about it?

Account-based marketing (ABM) is a B2B marketing strategy that coordinates sales and marketing activities to offer targeted advertising, as well as personalized content and messaging, to high-value accounts and, in particular, persons associated with those accounts.

This is due to the fact that B2B purchasing choices are frequently made by a group of individuals within the firm. Many of the data and workflow procedures that allow these groups to be targeted are automated by ABM solutions.

However, ABM is not a new concept. B2B marketers have been using it for well over a decade. However, substantial advancements in the sophistication and accessibility of pertinent data, as well as in the technologies that currently enable ABM, are generating widespread interest in and adoption of this strategy.

What are the types of account-based targeting?

A effective ABM strategy unites sales and marketing divisions to focus on high-value accounts with the greatest potential for business growth. ABM “flips” the traditional sales funnel by beginning with a small number of recognized accounts (rather than casting a wide net at the top) and gradually expanding as accounts are nurtured down into the funnel.

Many criteria influence the selection of targeted accounts, including the account’s history with the company and if the account is growing or in a growth-oriented market. One of the most essential criteria is whether it meets the Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) of the company.

What do account-based marketing tools do?

To automate and implement ABM initiatives, a wide range of ABM technologies are available. Tools for B2B data enrichment, AI-based predictive analytics and recommendations, interaction management (i.e., digital advertising, direct mail, websites, events, and sales outreach), and ABM infrastructure and orchestration are among them.

Because data enrichment is a key feature of ABM technologies, it’s important to first understand the sorts of data these platforms operate with:

  • Data on intent. Determines whether or not a company’s actions or signals suggest whether or not an account is “in market” for a product or service.
  • Data pertaining to technology. Identifies the hardware and software systems used by accounts to conduct their businesses (important for technology vendors).

Account-based marketing targeting

ABM programs can target critical accounts on a one-to-one, one-to-few, or one-to-many basis. The precision required for targeting will be determined by the magnitude and scope of the ABM efforts: Because of the amount of contacts or influencers at their target accounts, SMBs may require a 1-to-many approach, but bigger organizations may discover that 1-to-1 targeting provides the customisation required to successfully nurture a critical account. Most suppliers offer machine learning and the granularity to support many levels of account targeting.

Data enrichment

Account data that is solid and accurate is the foundation of effective ABM. While many B2B organizations collect massive volumes of first-party data, there are frequently gaps that might undermine efforts to tailor content or offers to specific accounts. Some vendors and their partners offer extremely particular sorts of business data, as well as broad-based business data, which can provide valuable insights into purchase intent.

Integration of third-party software

Vendors are aggressively expanding their application architectures through native integration and APIs in order to provide B2B marketers with streamlined access to third-party systems that are already in their technological stacks. Although many tool manufacturers provide plug-and-play access to event platforms and content management systems (CMSs), native or out-of-the-box interfaces are more typically offered for CRMs and marketing automation platforms.

Several tools have been developed expressly for Salesforce integration and use. API integration may involve additional fees, which are typically charged on a per-call basis for each data download.

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