Get Smart! How Account Based Intelligence Boosts Your ABM Efforts

April 27, 2016 5:36:53 AM | By Matt Benati

Account Based Marketing (ABM) has been getting a lot of attention among B2B companies lately, and for good reason. ABM empowers sales and marketing teams to work in unison, targeting quality leads within an account.

Account Based Intelligence (ABI) goes one step further. The basic premise of ABI is that the more you know about an account, the better able you are to segment leads and personalize messaging. This feeds pipeline growth, renewal strategy, lead generation, sales intelligence, and database maintenance ­­– all essential elements of a successful ABM strategy.

But how do you get there?

First: Focus On Accounts

A significant benefit of ABM is how sales and marketing are aligned, forcing them to not only focus on accounts, but on the right accounts. If a prospect doesn’t match your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), don’t waste your time on them. The same goes for individual leads. Lead-­to­-account matching associates leads with target accounts, if applicable. Let’s say that you acquired a lead at a tradeshow, and she doesn’t belong to any of your target accounts. Is she a qualified lead? Perhaps. Perhaps not. You wouldn’t know without further research into her company.

Before targeted ABM strategies emerged, your new lead would likely have been dumped into an email list and sent a generic automatic marketing message or a template message created for a specific event, like a tradeshow.

However, these generic messages are rarely effective, often deleted, and occasionally met with annoyance that assures you won’t be making a sale to that particular person any time soon. Nancy Nardin from Smart Selling Tools critiques one such email, breaking down why it’s ineffective and what the sender should do instead. The takeaway is the importance of research, which really boils down to the importance of ABI ­– does the company match your ICP? Is your solution something they actually need or care about? Is the lead even the right person within the account to engage? It is in this way that account based intelligence helps you focus on the right accounts.

Once you’ve got the right accounts, you need to talk to the right people.

Second: Identify Decision Makers & Influencers

Wouldn’t it be amazing to simply call up a potential customer’s CIO and convince them to buy your software? Unfortunately, it rarely works like that anymore. To be effective, you have to drill down into target accounts to identify key decision makers and influencers. You have to engage multiple people, from users, managers, and purchasing agents, to ultimately even the person holding the purse strings, before a sale is made.

Last week we talked about SaaS companies and the importance of renewals on their business; what we didn’t talk about was how vital ABI is to the renewal process.

B2B enterprises that depend on renewals use a customer’s estimated LTV (Lifetime Value) to determine how much they can spend to acquire that customer. For example, if your customers typically renew their $15,000 annual subscriptions four times, you know that the overall revenue contribution from a customer will be $60,000. From here, you can estimate how much money you are willing to spend in sales and marketing efforts up front in order to acquire that customer. It’s not uncommon for companies to spend the equivalent of 1­-2 years of revenue knowing they are going to double their investment in the long run.

Of course, the goal is to get (and keep) the customer for less, and achieve the best ROI possible.

This is where ABI comes into play. The more you know about your target accounts, the more personalized your messages are to the right people, and the faster you will close a deal and guarantee future renewals.

But how do you learn more about your target accounts?

Third: Enhance And Maintain Your Database>/h2>

We also talked last week about the importance of maintaining your database. Recall the ZoomInfo statistic that showed more than half of all B2B organizations relied on databases that were up to 40% inaccurate. That’s a lot of rotten apples to be spending money marketing on every month.

And yet, maintaining your database, especially if it’s a large one, is a time­consuming and costly endeavor. If you have a more accurate ­– even enhanced ­– database, you can suddenly do so much more.

Like upselling. While we talk about how amazing a complete database is for marketing efforts, it can also be a goldmine for upselling to existing customers. For example, let’s consider a customer on a 4­-year software plan that includes 10 seats. Should they ever need to upgrade, they can pay a flat amount for each additional seat. If you’re still sending regular messages to your existing customers (as you should be), and you’re using LeadGnome to mine replies (try it for free if you’re not!), then you are continually getting new and enhanced data. You may realize there are several new people at the company who could benefit from using your software, so you reach out and offer your customer a deal on an additional package of seats.

Maybe they would’ve contacted you to purchase more, maybe not. But by using Account Based Intelligence and paying attention to the changes within your account, you were able to proactively reach out and upsell.

Using LeadGnome For Enhanced ABI

Account Based Intelligence is the foundation to a successful ABM strategy that aligns your sales and marketing teams. LeadGnome is an Account Based Intelligence web service company that mines responses to your email campaigns, generating new contacts. The system also enhances and maintains existing leads by unearthing valuable sales intelligence like titles, phone numbers, and even when the lead will be in the office so that you can strategically schedule your messages.

Access to the right people within your target accounts allows for segmentation and personalization, which ultimately leads to increased revenue, efficient renewal strategies and even previously unrecognized opportunities to upsell your customers.

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