That’s a wrap! EverString wrapped up its first ever Boss Marketer Bootcamp virtual event with great success! We designed this virtual event for the marketers out there who love their thought leadership, but really need a deep dive into actionable how-to lessons from the industry’s top marketers. For those of you that attended, we hope that we were successful in our mission to bring you new strategies you can implement right away. For those that missed it, you can watch all the sessions on demand here. OK, and now, for our recap!
J.J. Kardwell, President and Co-founder of EverString, kicked off the event by reminding us that as marketers, we are in the midst of a very important time. Today’s marketer has more influence on the company than ever before and the expectations put on marketers have never been higher. With the right technology and a progressive effort to align the organization from marketing to customer success, marketers can lead the revenue team like they never have before.
When we think about the modern methods of technology and alignment, a few topics come to mind. Namely Account-Based Marketing, demand generation, content marketing, and sales development—all of which were covered in the BMB event. In this post, we’ll go over some of the the actionable how-to lessons from leading marketers on ABM and demand generation. Despite the rumors, the two are not at odds with one another! You can (and should) run ABM programs alongside your traditional demand generation efforts. Let’s talk about how.
Account-Based Marketing Success Requires Your Entire Organization
Account-Based Marketing has spun off into a host of new strategies and acronyms. By and large, the industry agrees that in order to have a successful account-based approach, you need to involve more than just marketing. Enter philosophies like Account-Based Sales Development and Account-Based Everything, which involve other teams like sales development, sales consulting, and customer success.
Account Selection Requires Everyone’s Input
The first, and arguably the most important, step to any account-based strategy is account selection. In his presentation, Craig Rosenberg, Chief Analyst at TOPO said, “This is about your ideal customer profile. This is about the ideal company or organization that you should go sell to. Everything else is just the way that you go get them and build relationships with them”.
Charlie Liang, Director of Marketing at Engagio, talked about the ideal account selection committee. It comprises of your executives, sales, marketing, and a predictive platform. Charlie explained that part of the big data revolution is that predictive platforms provide access to aggregated data in a way that has never been possible before. This combination of insight from sales and marketing, along with predictive data, is what teams need to be successful with account selection.
Once you have those target accounts and have organizational alignment around accounts, it’s time to market and sell to those accounts. Where do you start?
Make Your ABM Efforts Multi-Channel
Maria Pergolino, SVP of Marketing at Apttus, starts by thinking about content and the many channels through which you can distribute that content. She explained that unlike traditional demand generation, in ABM, you are creating highly personalized content and using those channels in a different way. For example, instead of sending a bunch of mailers to many of your prospects, in ABM, you would create a very personalized content offering, like an engraved portfolio, and send that to one person at one account.
Let Content Drive Your Programs for ABM
Amelia Ibarra, Social Media and Influencer Marketing Manager at EverString and Rachel Lefkowitz, Content Marketing Manager at EverString, spoke about some additional ways to create personalized content and use social in a totally new way to deliver that content as Maria recommends. For example, you could create a highly targeted ebook responding to one of your target account’s pain points. Now, that may sound daunting, but a great way to do this quickly is by taking an existing ebook that performs well for you and changing some of the copy to reflect specific pain points of a single account. Put the account’s logo on the cover of the ebook to let prospects know from the cover that this ebook is just for them. This is not the kind of content that you would tweet out to your followers. This personalized content requires a personalized strategy. We suggest creating highly targeted ads on social to decision makers at the account featuring this content.
Demand Generation Can Co-Exist with an Account-Based Strategy
Just because the industry is going gaga over ABM and the like, doesn’t mean traditional demand generation is irrelevant—far from it! Account-based strategies take a lot of effort from your team. You need to make sure that you are still creating content and programs to bring in new quality leads and move them through the funnel.
Multi-Channel Nurturing Works for Acceleration
Anastasia Pavlova, Sr. Director of Marketing at Marketo, talked about the importance of creating content to map to the entire customer journey. From there, the best practice is to use marketing automation to segment your audiences to leverage that content. For example, you can create personalized experiences on your website that will respond to the audience segments you set up in your marketing automation platform. So each person who visits your website has a relevant experience with your brand right from the start.
Website and over personalization methods should be used as part of a multi-channel nurture. Only 10% of your prospects are ready to buy at a given time, and 65% need to interact with your brand and move through a buyer journey before they feel comfortable making a buying decision. So don’t skimp on nurture! Make sure you are providing relevant information to prospects depending on where they are in the journey. And always make it multi-channel
Large-Scale Events Can Be Effective for Both Demand Generation and Your ABM Efforts
How else should you drive demand for your brand? Dayna Rothman, VP of Marketing at EverString, says, “don’t skimp on large scale and field events.” Large scale tradeshows are great for getting your brand out there and recognized by your audience. Sponsoring the events that your target audience attends helps your team get your thought leadership out there, build relationships with prospects, and accelerate deals.
Dayna gives the example of EverString’s presence at Marketo Summit. We had a huge booth presence with sponsorships, and we threw one of the biggest parties that we had ever been a part of. The proof is in the pudding on that one. Look at the below results!
While this kind of presence isn’t possible for every size team, Dayna recommends a few tips and tricks to still get a lot out of a tradeshow without a huge investment–for instance, consider creating a standout booth with some eye-catching swag. At EverString, we created a wall of visual succulents for our booth that was super eye-catching. We also gave away fun faux tattoos that featured a cute dog (who doesn’t love dogs) and our signature succulents. People loved those and kept coming by the booth to get more.
So, just because you are considering ABM, doesn’t mean you should skimp on your demand generation efforts. You need demand generation to bring in new quality leads and nurture them through to a buying decision. While ABM is a great way to break into those large scale accounts that need that extra level of personalization, don’t turn off the marketing machine that is your demand gen efforts. According to our experts, but strategies can (and do) live side-by-side.