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6 min read

How to develop Account-Based Marketing strategies

6 min read

How to develop Account-Based Marketing strategies

Have you heard of the term "Account-Based Marketing" before, does it sound familiar or not at all? If your answer is no, what you should know is that if your company doesn't have a defined model strategy for your customer's shopping experience, then you should be able to...

Possibly it is because there is a dissonance between your marketing and sales teams in relation to the value strategy they have implemented towards customers and prospects which affects their experience with your brand.

Have you ever experienced that "friction" between those departments in your company, when trying to plan strategies? You have seen them questioning pricing, trying to focus their campaign ideas, how to generate ROI and after all with unfavourable results at the end of the year in their company reports.

This can happen for very simple reasons: both departments have not focused their efforts on directing their business strategies towards creating personalised shopping experiences. 

So the sales team tries to sell your product and service but the way in which they project the value of your company is not ideal, or has not been tailored to your ideal customer. This is where Account-Based Marketing takes centre stage.

In the following blog you will learn about: 

  • What is ABM and the differentiators of its metrics compared to traditional marketing?
  • How to develop Account-Based Marketing strategies in your company and the ways in which ABM promotes better account management. 

What you should know about ABM, is that this is the growth strategy your company needs. Which at Imagineer we will show you step by step.

What is ABM and the differentiators of its metrics compared to traditional marketing?

There are various definitions of ABM but in essence Account-Based Marketing is a methodology for implementing growth strategies that are specifically oriented and highly targeted towards individual buyers with a specific organisation as the market.

Among its general concepts and metrics most widely known and applied by businesses are the following:

  • In ABM your business focuses on accounts not leads. A simple example can be fishing, in traditional marketing your company uses campaigns like a fishing net, you cast it and it doesn't matter what kind of fish came to you but the amount of fish.

    Instead with ABM you fish with a harpoon and your company directs its attention to that qualified sales accounts, in other words, the one who has the highest interest in buying from you.
  • Account-Based Marketing seeks quality rather than quantity. Following the example of the fish, why bother with campaigns aimed at poorly segmented leads and catching hundreds of sardines that in the end may not even be your ideal clients, when instead you could look for those qualified leads that represent a salmon in price for your business. 
  • In traditional marketing demand generation is based on days and weeks, with ABM you base it on months and years, why? Because to generate those qualified marketing and sales leads, you need time.

    Enough time so that your company can educate your prospects to generate enough engagement and loyalty so that they not only buy from you but also become your brand ambassadors.
  • With traditional marketing, your company needs to create a marketing funnel channel according to lead demand generation, known as a "pipeline". With ABM you look for an influence pipeline, a marketing funnel channel where you analyse the influence of your customer and buyer journey, the programmes and channels that your key account leads interacted with enough to become a business opportunity and move from MQA to SQA.
  • With the exception of marketing practices or initiatives with an inbound emphasis, with ABM you also design outbound practices. This does not mean that if your company uses inbound marketing strategies or methodologies, these are not effective, on the contrary, ABM has been strategically created to be complementary to inbound marketing.

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How to develop Account-Based Marketing strategies in your company and the ways in which ABM promotes better account management.  

To implement an ABM strategy, it is important that we consider its metrics in a macro perspective, being these also the major differentiator and added value of ABM and with this, we will be able to shape strategies that fit our business model and the value proposition of our company and the experience of our key customers in an efficient way. That would be the following five: 

  1. Coverage: Many companies are presented with queries, scenarios or existential crises such as the following: "In our company we don't know if we have enough data, opt-in contacts and account plans for each target account"?

    Coverage may be the simplest metric of all, because this metric tells your company that you have the right people in your database for key accounts. You can define this very simply by the information fields and roles of each prospect and customer you have; your buyer personas, the titles they have, their roles, all the necessary information you need to win one of your businesses you have in the database.

    And the simple thing is that if you don't have that information to win business, your company is not doing Accont-Based Marketing. Because if you don't know who your contacts are you have to research them to find out what product or service they want to buy from your company.

    In ABM there is a highly successful practice known as Quick Win. Which we discuss in more detail in the following blog on: How and why you should leverage account-based marketing on LinkedIn.

    Here you basically talk to the sales team and they tell you that you have 500 key accounts but you know that when you go into the database and you see only 20 contacts related to those key accounts at the end of 6 months in the reports you can go into the database and show that you have filled in the account profiles for all those key accounts, that becomes your company's first win in ABM. It is at that point that companies appreciate the value of the coverage.

  2. Awareness: Awareness as a source of ABM strategy implementation process is basically measured as: how many of the key accounts or target accounts in our company are aware of us? Awareness can be established in many ways according to the business rules the company wishes to implement.

    It can be set as the minutes they have viewed your business website, how many times they have viewed it, the number of pages they have visited there, the events they have registered, among others.
  3. Engagement: This term has been used so many times in marketing that it seems to be omnipresent. For ABM, engagement can be considered to be its soul and the main metric of all its metrics.

    Engagement can manifest itself in many ways but in the end what companies should be most interested in is answering this question: are the right people from the right key accounts spending their time with our brand? The way we can answer that question is by carefully analysing each of our buyer personas and the interactions they have with our brand.

    After that process we move on to the next step which would be: Of those target accounts that matter to us, does our brand have engagement with the CEO, CSO, CTO, CMO or any of the key decision makers associated with that account that we have established in our company?

    This is something that our company defines or should define over time. It's not just about the person but also what has been the consistent trend of that engagement, and how it has related to those accounts.

    The marketing team can show you those engagement metrics month by month; and when there is an increase the company can see if that increase has been from those accounts that matter most to us and if so, then that's a greate sign.
  4. Reach of the programme: In ABM We can consider that this metric is in charge of being that"alarm or signal" that will indicate us when our marketing programmes, continuing once again with the fishing example; if these are a net (with which you would try to fish for any lead that appears whether or not it is a buyer persona) or a harpoon (with which you focus on fishing for prospects or ideal leads).

    In other words, this metric is responsible for telling us whether our company's marketing programme, or the marketing programme carried out by a supplier to our company, is finding the people we are interested in.

    In this case, the way we could proceed would be to identify the percentage of any marketing programme, from that statistic, what percentage of successful interactions come from the right people in the right account?

    Let's say we have registered 1700 people for our biggest online event of the year, of that number about 500 entered our event, of that total, what percentage of those 500 principals are higher of the target customers?

    That percentage of focus can be used as a great way to rank your programmes to see if your company is looking for the right accounts. Which brings us to the last metric.
  5. Programme Impact: It is important that our company strives to size influence rather than just attribution. When it comes to influence, especially the correlation of events. When we generate ABM efforts, are they reflected, do they have an impact on a sales outcome that matters to my company or not?

    If our company directs a webinar to the accounts that have attended that event. These accounts ultimately end up generating better win rates. This metric can also help us as a last phase in the ABM cycle. The ABM activities we have generated should ultimately improve sales results with our key accounts.

If you are interested in learning even more about Account-Based Marketing, how it can help you and your business schedule a consultancy meeting with our team.



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