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You Flipped Your Funnel on the Road to ABM…Now What?

You Flipped Your Funnel on the Road to ABM…Now What?

#ABM is still on the upswing and still on everyone’s minds, but most of the talk is all about how to implement #ABM and how to get company buy in, etc. I sometimes hear people talk about how to identify their named accounts, or how many they should be targeting, but no one is talking about how to actually reach those folks.

I run an #ABM program here at Social123 and the easiest part of the entire transition for me, seems to be the more difficult part for my other marketing peers. What part is that, you ask? Filling my targeted accounts with relevant titles and contact information so we can actually communicate with them. This part was naturally a breeze for me because I work for Social123, a leading contact data provider and database management solution.

Luckily for me, the areas of difficulty are talked about copiously online – how to implement, how to change processes in your CRM, in your MAP, etc. Those resources seem to be everywhere. Perhaps because I was looking for them, I was able to find them. But after hearing the pain points from my marketer friends about not being able to FILL their funnels with the right contacts, I started hunting for more blogs and resources online to address this difficulty with ABM. Lo and behold – I found close to nothing.

My goal today is to provide a use case for how to do it the right way, with or without a data partner, like Social123.

  • If you HAVEN’T already identified your target accounts…
    • If you aren’t sure who to go after, what better segment to direct than your customers. Do an analysis of your customers so you can find more people and accounts like them as well.
    • First identify commonalities among the accounts (company revenue, employee count, location, utilized technologies, etc).
    • Then identify commonalities among the buyers and end users of closed won accounts (most commonly occurring titles, locations, certifications, skills, groups, etc).
    • Either have a company like Social123 help with this or do it manually with pivot tables in excel.
    • Now that you have a list of common characteristics of your accounts and the decision makers at those accounts, find more like them either manually leveraging social profiles and websites or through a data solutions partner. This would be very hard to do manually because it requires matching account characteristics with personal professional characteristics.
  • If you HAVE already identified your accounts…
    • You still need to figure out who to target at those accounts – and remember just because someone isn’t a decision maker, doesn’t mean they don’t influence decisions. Or just because someone makes decisions, doesn’t mean they will be the end-user of your product. So be sure to keep that in mind when crafting your messaging.
    • In order to get a better understanding of who to target at your named accounts, again, I suggest looking to customers. Identify common characteristics among your buyers AND end users (most commonly occurring titles, locations, certifications, skills, groups, etc).
    • Either have a data solutions partner help with this or do it manually with pivot tables in excel. Again, it is very hard to match on 2 sets of characteristics manually, but if getting a data partner on board isn’t in your budget, this may be your only option.

Account based marketing is indeed all about accounts, but when all is said and done, you still have to get in touch with the actual people at those accounts. A critical goal of ABM is to open lines of communication with more than one person at an account, so naturally, it is very important to have not only the contact information for various people within the account but also to have supplemental characteristic data points as well. Leveraging those data points can mean the difference between a successful ABM program and one that really doesn’t show a return.

If you are running and #ABM program already or even just starting, I’d love to hear your story! Feel free to comment below.


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