There are thousands of articles, webinars and infographics out there that dive into all of the benefits of an account-based marketing (ABM) strategy. For large enterprises, however, resources are slim. If marketing and sales departments within those companies are looking to launch a pilot program or enhance their current ABM tactics, they won’t find a lot of remedies for their particular pain points or evidence backing up ABM as a go-to-market strategy.
Instead, they’ll find general ABM rules and practices that cater to small and medium-sized businesses and mid-market enterprises. While business-to-business companies of varying sizes may have a similar approach to ABM (highly targeted and personalized), a large enterprise will have different expectations, challenges and objectives regarding an ABM program.
There’s no doubt account-based marketing for large enterprises is invaluable. If it’s used strategically, it can benefit an entire organization from the top down. Here are four ways large enterprises can use ABM to grow their bottom line and scale marketing success.
1. ABM can increase security and customization
We’ve all seen it before: You’re at a large enterprise and the number of technology roadblocks you encounter seems endless. It’s one thing after another. The CRM the CMO wants to use isn’t approved by finance. Your current content-marketing platform doesn’t promote scalability. Most commonly, the IT department will not approve any third-party integrations due to a recent security breach.
Luckily, ABM can still be put into action — your team just has to think outside of the box. With the right resources and an integrated tech stack, large enterprises can run ABM campaigns using a microsite. Not only does a microsite boost security (as no third-party tool has been given access to the enterprise’s main site), but it can also be personalized and tailored by target account in order to increase engagement.
2. ABM lends itself to a better understanding of a prospect’s buying journey
Prospects conduct most (70 percent, according to Sirius Decisions) of their buying journey anonymously and online. Before your display ads have even been approved, your target has formed his or her own opinions and may have even considered your competitor. But, according to CSO Insights, 90 percent of buyers are “open to engaging sellers earlier in the buying process, especially when facing a new, risky, or complex situation.” What does that have to do with ABM and enterprises?
By utilizing ABM tools like intent data and visitor-intelligence software, enterprises can align on where the prospect is in the buying process — which is harder to accomplish in a larger, more complex organization. This way, both marketing and sales will have the necessary information to know what to say and how to best engage with the accounts, leading to an overall better performance and higher ROI.
3. ABM helps resolve challenges across divisions
For enterprises with multiple locations and several products, reporting and insight on marketing and sales performance are often siloed. The learnings gained in one division may not translate to another, resulting in missed opportunities and wasted marketing spend.
Enter ABM. Similar to point No. 1, the right ABM tech stack can resolve these challenges. With a fully implemented, integrated and optimized tech stack, an enterprise will have complete reporting and analytics visibility from point A to point B. This type of combined reporting dashboard will allow enterprise stakeholders to gauge the total ROI and make decisions about how to better leverage tactics in all markets.
4. ABM insights can be used to inform other enterprise-marketing initiatives
One of the most important points large enterprises should keep in mind is that ABM is neither linear nor a one-and-done approach. Successful ABM strategies have a continued approach to all interactions with target accounts. One sale isn’t the end game if you can continue to upsell or cross-sell within that company.
That said, large organizations can benefit from ABM long after the deal has been made. The insights garnered from the ABM campaign — whether it was 1:1, 1:few, or 1:many — can be used to inform larger content-marketing campaigns, website updates and even smaller SEO tactics. Whether it’s keyword research, customer pain points or what did or didn’t resonate, you’ll have the concrete data to apply best practices to other marketing channels and assets going forward.