How to Get Started with ABM: Step 5- Let’s Talk Tactics
In part 4 we covered how to focus on your goals and strategies when it comes to launching your ABM programme. This time around we start looking at Account Based tactics.
There are a plethora of ways to reach your target accounts such as Ads, Remarketing, LinkedIn advertising, Social selling, Sales outreach, Client success stories, Industry-relevant content and, of course, Direct mail & gifting.
At this stage, we will have our ICP in place, our list of target accounts, the tiers the accounts fall in and the strategies we plan to use to hit our goals. As with everything ABM, it’s about using the right tactic for the right account. With so many avenues to choose from it can take a bit of time to work that out. Luckily we’re here to make it as easy as possible for you. Start by asking yourself the following
What are Your ABM Objectives?
Are you trying to:
Win new accounts?
Nurture existing opportunities?
Grow the value of existing accounts?
Change perceptions, positioning, etc?
What Type of Program are You Running?
Where is Each Account in The Buyer Journey?
ToFu: Top Of Funnel?
MoFu: Middle of Funnel?
BoFu: Bottom of Funnel?
What opportunity stage are they in?
This will help you narrow down the right approach for the right program and will help you pick the right channel tactic and we’ve expanded on them for you here
ABM definitely isn’t just about targeted ads as your only tactic. However, it can be vital in getting your target accounts from having no awareness of you to the top of the funnel. The great thing is that targeted display ads are easier to use than ever and offer you more control than ever too.
When your prospects hit your site, you’ll be hoping to give them some value to take away and at best have them convert. This doesn’t always happen from the first visit. Bear in mind that people are busy and that once they leave your page, other things can suddenly take priority. Help remind your prospects that you’re there using remarketing and you can now be really specific. If your prospect visited your blog page a remarketing ad to a specific blog which builds on the latest content they read could be the nudge needed to bring them back around.
Social ads can be a powerful tool regardless of the network. Social media is as much a part of business as email is. The power of LinkedIn ads is that LinkedIn is the network dedicated to your prospect’s professional life. In the b2b space, LinkedIn ads will help you target your prospects on a channel that speaks to their business selves rather than on a channel that they use to post pictures of their bottomless brunches!
Get your sales teams, your social media managers and even yourself involved! Social selling is a key tactic for any business, not only is it another channel for your teams to make connections and build relationships but it can often allow for a more relaxed and even fun way to engage with your prospects. Tools like Hootsuite and Hubspot allow you to track posts, search hashtags and set up listening streams so that you can be part of the conversation. Even with a killer ABM program in place, people buy from people and social can give you a platform to show who the people that make up your business are and if they can buy into you, they can buy into your services.
Industry/Sector/Challenge- Specific Content
As you raise awareness and your prospects start to get to know who you are and begin to understand the solutions you offer, you can begin to really help your target accounts see that you are the go-to option with content that speaks directly to their industry, the sector they work on or the challenges that they would face on an account level. Blogs, videos and how-to guides that hone in on a challenge or a specific industry will always perform better than generic content. People want to feel that they are being spoken to directly and this is your opportunity to do so.
Client Success Stories/ Case Studies
Nothing sells quite like success. Social proof and relevant case studies and success stories not only back up the results you can help deliver but also help reassure new accounts that you can be trusted. Not only does this help attract new accounts but helps keep existing ones to stick with you as they are more invested but you also may uncover other, unforeseen, challenges that you helped with. Work alongside your clients on a project they have using your solution, have your customer success teams gather wins and by simply having your clients answer:
What’s the situation your client found themselves in?
What’s the problem they used you to solve?
What solutions were you able to provide?
What value did your client gain by using you?
You can create a wealth of case studies and success stories to shout about.
Getting your sales and business development team speaking with your target accounts can help turn a message that would normally take several emails into one simple video call. It allows your teams to have more personalized sequences, make use of tools like LinkedIn InMail but most importantly allows for that human connection to shine through. Try using channels like Vidyard or LinkedIn video as a way to reach your prospects rather than an email, attend online events or even use the tried and tested phone call!
Direct Mail and e-Gifting
If you’re thinking “you’re a direct mail and e-gifting platform, of course, you’d say it’s a key tactic”. And you’re absolutely right. As part of a strong ABM program, direct mail and e-gifting can bring together all your other channel tactics, it plays well with other forms of outreach and who doesn’t love receiving something that is especially for them? Direct mail can help recreate some of the magic of in-person events. One of our clients sent their webinar attendees a selection of wines and had a sommelier join the webinar to host a remote wine tasting. You can send swag that would otherwise be on tables or even an e-gift card for a coffee to your prospects before a call!
Whew! I don’t know about you but that’s a lot of plays to make. Plan out the journey you think your prospects will take and what play works best at each step. In the next blog, we dive into tactics for one-to-few and one-to-one campaigns.
For our full "How to Get Started with ABM" series: