How to make sure your ABM initiative doesn’t end in failed ABM pilots, poor results, or mismanagement
Growth Mindset Training
Your experience with ABM and the management consulting done prior to launching a proper program is going to require a mindset shift.
Your organization needs to be spoon-fed, on a twice-a-week basis, content on what ABM means to the business. Your team needs to know how to make better decisions around how to invest. They should understand where their organization sits, relative to their competition, in terms of ABM maturity, and what a good ABM program test looks like.
In addition, they should know that account based marketing is not the same as demand generation marketing. There is no magic lead tree — hell, ABM doesn’t even talk about things in terms of “leads.” ABM will cost money, and it will be a long-term investment. (If the minimum buy-in at a Texas Hold-Em table is $200, and you sit down with $37, how do you think that is going to end up?)
Historical Revenue Performance Analysis
All the experience, expertise, and technology in a room pales in comparison to the power of historical revenue performance. You need to know your data: customer composition by size, vertical, average LTV, CAC recovery periods, LTV expansion rate, and more.
All these data points shape the guidance that will be necessary to map where you are today, who you sell to and how, to where you want to be in 36 months. There’s a line where aspirational growth turns into an unvalidated territory and it’s important to identify when that’s the case.
Content Inventory Analysis and Prescription
ABM consulting helps you split your funnel for inbound and outbound first, and the very next step is to flip the outbound side of your funnel (think hunting vs. farming). For both sides of the funnel, however, content is a vital part of the mix.
Many of our clients historically have had a spray-and-pray approach to new content. This is a problem. When we talk to them, they aren’t sure why a piece of content was written. Was it to capture searches? Was it for social sharing? Was it to please someone inside the organization? Or was it for an actual purpose related to closing deals?
Creating content for content’s sake is frankly a waste of poorly invested funds. At a minimum, we should be creating content that we are going to hire to do a specific job in our funnel.
There’s a difference between creating content that competes for attention from a high intent internet search, content that competes for organic attention and is brand forward, content that helps you compete for budget once attention is won.
A successful ABM consulting engagement helps your team understand just how deep or light your inventory is in these four categories and gives you the information required to adjust your approach to the customer at different areas of the customer journey. ABM consulting should take you through the audit process to understand what your gaps and future production schedule ought to look like.
ABM Play Design for Success
It’s important to define the acceptable ABM plays your brand has an interest in running from the start. Making it up as you go along is a recipe for failure, slow implementation, and analysis paralysis. You need to build the muscle that helps you think about ABM plays and interacting with your customers in this way. With that said, these plays form the baseline for inflight optimization. ABM consulting engagements are going to get you into the starting blocks and running races.
Organizational Structure, Roles, Responsibilities, and Workflows
When ABM initiatives are in motion, employees will be doing things differently because leadership values revenue more than activity but is also comfortable doing an activity with no clear attribution but they can see the value is being created in a relationship
In an ABM Consulting engagement, everything is set up as a test to learn quickly what are the best personalization, research, list building activities for your growth. These are tangible pilars of growth that are produced through an ABM consulting engagement.
The ultimate guide for Account Based Marketing Tactics
Technology, Integration, Automation, Personalization, Relevancy
ABM consulting would be incomplete without some sense of the integration and automation capabilities for the current stack and website.
Understanding the limits of your current CRM, how mature it is.
The marketing automation currently implemented and its suitability for automating things in small batches at scale. Your ability to with other technology that are table stakes for doing ABM instead of shadow ABM. Your strategy for capturing information without violating cookie policies and consumer rights but still getting the results/ROI you want. The answers to these questions for some companies present marketing consulting problems