BMA – Fishing with Spears (Account Based Marketing)

engagioExcellent event!  Interesting – this is not the first Account Based Marketing event that starts from the discussion of the definition of ABM, or, rather, definitions.  And the definition will keep changing – if not in the understanding of the industry gurus, it will be not “settled” for quite a while in the understanding of the average marketer.  Ah, our lovely interesting times… 🙂

At first Marketo targeted small businesses, and inbound marketing worked very well.  Routinely, marketing was responsible for 80% of the sales pipeline.  However, when the company decided to target larger organizations, including enterprises, the inbound approach was ineffective.  New approach was needed.


ABM is a way of thinking rather than an initiative that marketing does next quarter.  Marketing through the sales cycle and beyond the sales.  It is not always understood as part of marketing – at one point, Marketo penalized vendors for bringing leads who were already existing customers.


ABM has highest ROI from all other marketing efforts.  ABM is the hottest thing in marketing now.


Joe Chernov: “How do you know that two marketers are talking about ABM?  Because their lips are moving.”



ABM Principles

Account customization works very well, but does not scale.  There are other approaches.

Alignment with sales is important – the same % of sales results should be expected from ABA as % of marketing efforts invested.

Let Sales pick accounts, but give reps data on the accounts in their territory to form their selection.  If sales do not select specific accounts that seem attractive, ask why.

Example: one organization’s marketing targeted users of the product when they moved to another company.  The program was very successful in generation of appointments.  However, sales did not find the appointments interesting, as these meetings were not with the organizations sales were targeting.

“Technographics” – what technology company uses.

Getting correct list of targeted accounts is the most important part of ABM success.

75% of executives will read insightful content…  This percentage is higher than an average employee.  This interest is explained by the nature of the executive’s job – to understand how to take the company further.


Example of ABM: a company sends a box for an executive.  The box contains an industry  book and a personalized letter.  Hopefully, the book will end up on executive’s shelf.  The box that contains the book is rather large and filled with fortune cookies -messages related to the problems company’s products help to solve.   Hopefully, the box and cookies will end up in the kitchen, where employees can eat them and read the messages.

ABM approach to programs starts with “who” rather than the promotion.


ABM can not scale, but it can be applied to different accounts in different flavors.


ABM challenge – traditional marketing metrics do not work.  Pipeline takes time; what intermediary metrics can be used?

  • Coverage – do you have data for accounts?
  • Awareness – do targeted accounts come to our site – are they aware about us?
  • Engagement – are right people at the account spend time with our company?
  • Program Reach – what % of all people reached were from targeted accounts
  • Program impact – how ABM activities improved sales outcomes, deal velocity, etc.

Can be abbreviated as “I Care” 🙂


MQA – Marketing Qualified Account

Presentation in SlideShare

Excellent event!

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