Account Based Marketing: Have you seen higher returns from ABM?

April 24, 2015

Account based marketing (ABM) is getting some serious limelight these days. B2Bs, bloggers and market research firms alike are certainly fuelling its resurgence, but it is just that: resurgence. ABM is by no means new – it’s been around for a couple of decades, but the official phrase was coined back in 2004 by ITSMA. They defined ABM as: “A structured approach to developing and implementing highly-customized marketing campaigns to markets of one, i.e. accounts, partners or prospects.” Treating individual accounts as a market in their own rights

The basic principle is to completely align sales and marketing processes that build on relationships with a particular (and extremely targeted) key account. 

Some companies go to great lengths, I’ve had meetings with a company that produced milk powder machinery, predominantly for confectionery. Entire showrooms were built to demonstrate the machinery and targeted invitations were sent to procurers of this machinery. Naturally the showroom was positioned near Nestlé's headquarters, a high investment for one key account but the ROI potential was also high.  

According to an article I came across on LinkedIn by Joel Harrison, editor-in-chief at B2B Marketing, “ABM finally appears to be a red hot topic in B2B marketing.” But I find this statement a little confusing. To say that it has its place and is now a huge trend is misleading – ABM has had its place for a long time now.

I do however think that marketers are constantly looking for targeted cost effective ways to develop their key accounts.  So perhaps its true to say it is coming into its own as marketers look for smarter ways to spend their budget delivery higher ROI from existing accounts rather than solely focussing on new acquisition. 

I feel we are moving into an age where marketing is all about customer experience, and if ABM can improve the customer experience and therefore increase revenue from that account, then that’s a stronger lead for your marketing strategy.  Have you seen high returns form ABM campaigns? 

Jessica Ellis - Business Development Director

Photo credit: Alan O'Rourke