We’ve explored how to target the right accounts for your account-based marketing program, but once that’s accomplished, how do you actually reach them? After all, developing content and organizational buyer personas is only effective if you have a method of delivering this content to the right buyers.
Choosing the right channel and strategy for your ABM program is all about understanding where your target audience “lives” online. You want to deliver content where your audience already is.
If you have a solid buyer persona for each account you are targeting, you may already have information about ideal channels to pursue. For instance, if you know that the executive team at a big account uses LinkedIn and Twitter to share thought leadership articles, those would probably be good channels to use. Or, maybe you are already in contact with some key prospects via email. This could indicate that email newsletters and one-on-one sales pitches are the way to go.
Here are some examples of channels that your target audience might use:
- Social networks (LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook)
- Direct mail
- In-person events and conferences
Once you’ve pinpointed the channel(s) that you will use, it’s time to strategize how your team will use them. Will you publish thought leadership and share it? Create highly targeted display ads? Encourage salespeople to reach out one-to-one?
There is no one-size-fits-all strategy for ABM. Instead, it will depend on your goals and resources. And often, you will have multiple goals that will require multiple strategies.
Some common ABM goals include:
- Expanding into new markets or territories
- Increasing visibility in existing market or territory
- Making more efficient use of your marketing resources for larger, bigger-impact results
- A higher return on investment
- Better sales-marketing alignment within your organization
- Launching a new product to a targeted audience
- Seeing more value from existing customers through upsells, etc.
For example, if you want to reach marketing specialists at a select few mid-sized SaaS companies, you might choose LinkedIn as your preferred channel, since you know they typically share content there. Your goal is to generate new leads, so you start by raising awareness using sidebar ads. Then, once your audience is aware of your brand, you move onto delivering in-stream thought leadership pieces. From here, you monitor who engages with and downloads your content, and your sales team contacts the accounts that have shown interest.
Lastly, any good strategy requires measurement and follow-up, so make sure you are tracking and evaluating your results, and using the lessons learned in your next ABM program.