Why Data & Technology Make All the Difference For Account-Based Marketing Excellence
Account-based marketing (ABM) is not a new business strategy in the B2B world. Sales teams have been inherently focused on pursing targeted accounts to grow their top line for years. So too, marketing teams know an engaged customer is more receptive to promotions than a cold prospect.
So why has ABM captured the attention of so many lately?
That’s what we aimed to uncover at the Seattle Digital Marketing Forum held at the Seattle Art Museum. Two ABM experts and business partners, Anudit Vikram, former SVP Advanced Marketing Solutions at Dun & Bradstreet and Niraj Deo, Senior Director Product Management Oracle Data Cloud, sat down for a fireside chat to discuss “Measuring the Effectiveness of Account-Based Marketing.”
A lot of ground was covered on why ABM is so compelling across the board - from the C-Suite to daily sales and marketing practitioners. You can see the full exchange here:
Following are a few especially insightful highlights and quotes from the conversation:
1. ABM offers a common language for communication and alignment between functions in your organizations.
“For marketing it is an activation channel, for sales it is a focus, for the executive team it is a strategic driver for their growth - a tool for them to define go-to-market and open new markets. It has become a much bigger component of how B2B business operates.” Niraj Neo
2. Technology has changed the way you think about ABM.
“In some ways you should think of ABM more as a philosophy of how you run your marketing campaigns. In that context technology exists to run campaigns across different channels…to collect data across the different channels… and to enable a feedback loop across all of them. With today's technology it is very easy to connect humongous amounts of data and make some sense out of it. Which is why although we have been doing account-based marketing for years and years, we've never called it ABM. Because it was always isolated channels of marketing. Technology makes it possible for you to bring them all together into a holistic program.” Anudit Vikram
3. ABM puts a spotlight on your data.
“ABM is highly data-driven. It provides …a spotlight on the data you actually have. And it is sitting across multiple channels because ABM involves multiple execution methods to build the entire program. It becomes even more important to have data you can use to stitch across these different channels, like some kind of persistent identifier. When the same user is being exposed to something (across different channels) it makes it even more important for you to know that very well.” Anudit
4. Data is necessary to automate and deliver responsive customer outreach.
“From a platform perspective, data becomes a very important part for your automation so that you're faster to react. In order to automate you need to be programmatic. In order to be programmatic you need to be data-driven. Data is the connective tissue between multiple functions that you do as a part of your customer experience outreach. From a platform perspective it is important to make sure you are banking on the right quality data. It's a responsibility for B2B marketers to make full use of the data elements that are available.” Niraj
5. The million dollar question is, “How do you measure the effectiveness of your ABM program?”
“Unlike B2C where you're selling something to a person, in this case you're selling something to a business. So every single person within the business has to somehow get mapped back up to that business. If I have a method by which I know every touch point I have with anybody in a given campaign and somehow can get mapped back to a business that I'm trying to talk to, that's the holy grail for figuring out how I can actually measure the efficacy of an ABM campaign.” Anudit
6. CMO’s can be your organization’s champion by communicating ABM success.
“I think one of the greatest challenges any CMO or marketer faces is how do you provide that simple credible readout on the value that you’re providing, especially to the C-suite within your company? How do you keep that funding going and improve the ROI to them. ABM helps you do something that is really important to the C-suite. You measure very specifically how many engagements you have with a finite set of accounts that you have in a portfolio and there's no two ways about it, either you engaged with them or you did not.” Niraj
7. These experts have some exciting predictions!
“I think five years from now we should have push-button ABM for specific use cases. We're going to be running more and more complex campaigns and we're going to be getting better and better at measuring the efficacy of those campaigns. Multi-touch attribution is absolutely going to happen and happen very soon. And I think account-based marketing or the philosophy of account-based marketing is going to take hold across the entire B2B spectrum.” Anudit
“The future is in in making sure that we’re using all the predictions and recommendations the data platforms offer – and the data itself – to make sure we’re able to programmatically at least come closer to what our customers’ intent is and act on it as fast as we can. That is what is going to determine whether you're successful or not. At the same time, activation at scale or activation at precision will start becoming much more fine-tuned. So the future is definitely in determining the intent of what your prospective customer is going to do and being able to react to that.” Niraj
Together Dun & Bradstreet and the Oracle Data Cloud have collaborated to bring a best-in-class natively integrated audience data and technology solution to hundreds of B2B marketers. Contact Oracle's Data Hotline to learn more.