Account-based marketing (ABM), also known as key account marketing, is a business-to-business marketing strategy that treats customer accounts as individual markets. Account-based marketing is aimed at creating long-term relationships with prospect and customer accounts. Account based marketing strategies are being proven effective at engaging customers and managing sales opportunities.
Engagio recently conducted a survey of over a thousand companies to discover the trends in account based marketing in early 2018. Let’s talk about some of the important takeaways from the data that was uncovered.
One of the questions asked of companies surveyed was: ‘How mature are you in handling account based marketing?’ The largest group, 44.95%, stated they were just getting started, while 19.07% said they were well underway and 4.85% said that they were advanced with their plans. A decent-sized amount, 23.92%, said5 they were thinking about getting started, and 7.22% said they had no plans to get started at all. The data shows that many companies are already working with account based marketing strategies, and many more are getting started.
The reason why so many businesses are starting account based marketing programs is because the vast majority of companies are seeing a higher return on investment (ROI) with ABM than with traditional marketing strategies. Many companies are also using a combination of demand generation and account based marketing. This survey shows that even though account based marketing takes time to get set up, companies that are getting on board with it see substantial results. Businesses that aren’t using account based marketing could be missing out on big growth.
Another survey question asked pertained to the challenges and risks companies are facing that could cause failure for account based marketing efforts. The largest group at 24.5% said that the biggest challenge was a lack of ability to execute. 19.47% said the biggest risk was the lack of sales alignment, while 17.58% said they had issues with the quality of data. 16.32% said they were unable to measure a return on investment; 11.66% said they did not have an executive buy-in; and 8.47% said they had issues with account selection. The success of an account based marketing strategy depends on the team’s ability to execute strategy. Teams must work together in order to overcome challenges and handle risks so that the strategy is successful.
Another question asked of businesses pertains to the budget planned for account based marketing in 2018. The average portion of the marketing budget set aside for account based marketing was 29%. Many businesses are increasing their investment in ABM as they see the benefits of adopting ABM strategies.