Marketing efforts are progressing each day and Account-Based Marketing holds its testimony. With its advancements, a mammoth of marketers has benefitted in order to improve their services, gaining bigger accounts and connecting with them in a heightened way. Content plays a key role here, as well as in strategising and converting a greater number of prospects. This is because ABM works backward by flipping the marketing funnel.
Since marketing is all about rethinking, reimagining and innovating, it cannot stop at a defined structure making the same methodologies and credos to go on for years together. After all, change is driving the world. CMI’s annual Enterprise Content Marketing survey revealed that 34% respondents already use ABM while 21% of them are willing to take a shot. ABM challenges the very core part of marketing fundamentals, the marketing funnel. So, how do you go about your content marketing efforts? Are the rules different when it comes to ABM? Let’s figure it out once and for all. Shall we?
A consumer’s journey is like a convulsion. Every brand out there wants to seize their attention and make them buy their products and services. Imagine yourself in a shopping mall. You have a list of things you need that ends up being neglected as you find a number of things you want based on factors such as quality, brand, advertisements, visibility, product packaging, recommendations, reviews, and more. The brand that resonates with the customers the most is the one that has made a deeper connection with them, eventually leading them to slide further down the funnel. And ABM helps identify that connection.
After you have identified the key cohorts in a world of prospects and customers, you should converge your focus on studying them and identifying imperative insights that will help you create effective content accordingly. Think about who you want to target; is it an enterprise or an individual who is a brand in himself/herself?
Based on your research and data, create thorough buyer personas of all the possible targets you are waiting to strike.
Based on that, and keeping in mind, you can create personalised content that will help in engaging and influencing them further. With this, you are not interrupting them with irrelevant data assumed by a generalised approach.
Since content marketing is a big part of any marketing efforts today, it is possible that you already have some content that might be useful. Conducting a thorough content audit on your content assets will help you understand that. Segregate everything you have into “good fit”, “close to a good fit”, and “not a good fit” and alter, update, polish, and personalise based on who you are reaching out to. A 2016 survey by eMarketer showed that B2B ABM marketers are prioritising delivering content which is tailored to a specific industry, role, or completely personalised for each account. Take a look:
This is the stage where you decide on an appropriate ABM approach to establish a strong and effective content strategy. There are basically three types of approaches in ABM. Which are these? We’ve got you covered.
One-to-one: If you have high-delivering prospects/accounts and wish to reap the best benefits by investing profusely on highly personalised content, then this is the right approach to follow.
One-to-few: This is about customising your key business imperatives for clusters of customers that would find it relevant. This is the second type of creating bespoke content with ABM after the one-to-one approach. It would include links to landing pages that provide solutions across specific verticals that can be of help of the identified cohorts in order to give out imperative business messaging and content.
One-to-many: This is an amalgamation of the techniques used in one-to-one and one-to-few. It involves creating either relevant ad-based content or leveraging existing content that is scattered around the needs of the key target accounts.
When brands take special care in creating personalised services based on our preferences and liking, it creates a sense of trust. As ABM involves rethinking the marketing funnel, the sequence of the funnel goes in the following order:
With this methodology, you can save a great deal of effort and time. ABM helps reduce up to 50% of sales time wasted on unproductive prospecting, which historically has caused sales to ignore 50% of marketing leads. Also, creating new content requires a great amount of time and money. This is why, while starting to create up-to-the-minute content, you should first look at what you already have. You can then find ways to customise it and use it in a way that is relevant to your who you are targeting. Now start mapping a content strategy for these accounts. Following is an example from A Recipe for Lean ABM, an eBook by Marketo that shows the buying journey of a higher education target account.
Constant irrelevant information rather drives a prospect away from you than attracting them. It is important to amalgamate inbound marketing strategies to influence, delight, and engage with your prospects in the long run.
ABM is a powerful tool but would not reap you benefits overnight. Discovering the right category content, i.e. awareness, consideration, and decision, and engaging them at a deeper level with super-personalisation are sure shot ways to never looking back.
However, for any campaign, it’s important to track and measure the efforts you are putting in. It’s the same for ABM too. Look at analytics and understand how your targets are engaging with your content, how long they are spending on your content, how they are engaging with it, and where they are going after that.
Establishing a coherent and effective B2B marketing automation strategy can be challenging because of the dynamics of the market. This is where ABM becomes greatly advantageous to B2B companies. It helps them to come up with a very efficient campaign and makes it easier to track content marketing efforts to get a better understanding of how your ABM strategy worked.