Technology in today’s world is always changing. It seems like everyone was just buzzing about marketing automation, and now technology has given you the power to create Account Based Marketing (ABM) so that you can focus on sales development, customer success, and yes, plenty of marketing.
If you feel a little overwhelmed by all of these changes, you’re not alone.
To break things down, let’s take a look at what happens during the first 90 days after a company rolls out their new digital marketing tool.
Marketing automation is all about achieving quick wins and seeing an immediate ROI. This is incredibly useful when company leadership wants to see immediate returns on its marketing investments.
While you may be tempted to dive in and create all kinds of automated campaigns, remember the old phrase, “You have to walk before you can run.” In the marketing automation world, “walking” is completing the technical setup so that you can start tracking leads across your website, collecting leads for your database, and successfully delivering emails.
You may have started drawing up some grand plans to build a lead nurture when, suddenly, you get bogged down in batch and blast campaigns for a newsletter or an event invite. As you “walk”, you have to keep doing what you’ve been doing, but in a brand new system—and that can be time-consuming. Naturally, there is a learning curve, and tasks you used to do with your eyes closed now have you on edge wondering if you will make a mistake. This is the reality of implementing marketing automation. It will pay dividends in the long run, but the first 90 days can be tough.
What about Account Based Marketing? What do those first 90 days look like?
ABM demands much more focus on strategy and alignment before the technical implementation phase is even considered. The first thing you need to do is set goals. Which accounts are you going after and why? How many do you need to close each quarter or each year in order for this to be successful?
With ABM, people in a variety of departments will play a role. Your teams need to be organized in a way that will support your ABM efforts—meaning that your sales teams will need to be restructured, and you’ll need to have the right marketing folks in place. In order to succeed at ABM, everyone has to buy in and be on the same page. This requires a heavy dose of education, training, and teamwork.
Once the pieces are in place, the knowledge is built, and the goals are set, you can begin to create your playbook. Figure out the right recipe for penetrating your target accounts, and coordinate your resources across a variety of scenarios. The amount of work in this phase grows exponentially, so focus on the most common scenarios so that the time you spend is as efficient as possible. Only then can you start digging into the technical setup.
Even though marketing automation and ABM complement each other, they come with completely different implementation phases.
In fact, they’re basically polar opposites. ABM requires an immense amount of strategy early on, and marketing automation is a race to complete the setup and launch your first few campaigns. But in the end, these opposites can work together to generate big results!