A Roundup of News, Tools, Events and Thought Leadership from the World of Account-Based Funnel Management
By John Saxe, Scratch Marketing + Media
You want to stay abreast of the latest developments in account-based, but you don’t have time to read everything. That’s where we come in. In each digest, Scratch Marketing recaps the most recent doings in the account-based world and ties them up with a bow for you to peruse. Enjoy the latest news!
ABM News, Reports, Stats and Stories
October 10, 2017
Synthio, in partnership with Demand Generation Report
Synthio and Demand Gen Report partnered to share a comprehensive outlook on how B2B companies might best integrate new ABM approaches into their existing lead generation strategy. The paper discusses balancing the old and the new approaches as well as some successful strategies aimed at getting all the pieces of the marketing puzzle to fit together.
The Scratch lens:
While it looks like there will continue to be skirmishes on the border between traditional lead gen strategies and newer, tech-enabled account-based approaches, the turf war between these two camps appears to be ending in something of a stalemate. For numerous clients we have prescribed a dual approach, allowing Inbound to operate in the background while working to develop a marketing and sales interlock to go after ready customers demonstrating clear buying signals. You can read more about this parallel approach in the most recent Forbes article xxx, by Scratch Principal Lora Kratchounova.
Influencer / ABM Leader Commentary
October 12, 2017
Peter Herbert, Business2Community
In this article, the VP of Marketing at Terminus Peter Herbert shares his ABM origins story. From the very inception of the concept with his colleague Kristen Wendel, now Sr. Director of Operations at LeanKit, to arriving at their special ABM ‘formula’: Fit + Intent + Engagement model for ABM. Peter also shares Terminus ABM secrets about what kind of tech stack they are using for each component of the formula. For example, EverString is actively used at Terminus for account fit determination, while Bombora is used for intent mapping.
The Scratch lens:
Herbert says the formula for effective ABM is Fit + Intent + Engagement: How closely a target matches your ICP + the behaviors the target account is exhibiting to indicate its readiness to buy a solution + the interactions with your brand, specifically to indicate how likely they are to buy from you. It’s notable that the VP of Marketing at Terminus relies on a different tool for each component of this formula, tapping EverString and Bombora for Fit and Intent, respectively, and his company’s own product for Engagement. Goes to show that it’s still going to take a number of mergers and acquisitions before the concept of end-to-end finds a home in the account-based world.
Tools and Tips: The Martech Angle on ABM
October 6, 2017
Jess Nelson, Email Marketing Daily
Demandbase unified its existing offering into an end-to-end B2B ABM platform. The platform is designed to enhance sales and marketing alignment in targeting and conversion, and includes website optimization solutions, forms, live chats, as well as the account-based marketing automation that the company has been originally popular for.
The Scratch lens:
Essentially all martech tools are repositioning themselves as ABM platforms, with many making the claim that they offer end-to-end solutions. Demandbase is no different (although they may be the closest to delivering on the E2E claim). They are packaging their targeting, engagement and conversion solutions into a single comprehensive offering, and, in a decidedly late twenty-teens twist (2015+), they are touting the application of artificial intelligence (AI) to improve the analytics and recommendations the platform provides.
With no clear consensus around what is, and is not, AI, we are in a precarious spot with this term. We’ve allowed buzzwords like “AI” and “machine learning” to get artificially inflated while having no clear definition of what the technology can deliver. As such, the AI claim is a hard one to either prove or disprove, so it remains to be seen how effective this new platform can be.
October 10, 2017
Juan Martinez, PC Magazine
This article discusses the newest Salesforce releases and how they simplify some of the pressing B2B marketing-specific issues. For instance, the account-based marketers got a tool of their own – Einstein ABM. The tool automates some of the manual tasks earlier shared by sales and marketing teams – account identification, marrying information across databases as well as customization in marketing campaign execution. “This is best-of-breed of what we’ve done for B2C [business-to-consumer] but now for the B2B marketer,” said Chris Jacob, Director of Product Marketing for Salesforce Marketing Cloud Advertising Studio.
The Scratch lens:
We’ve long known that facebook is a viable channel for B2B marketing; we’ve often included the platform in multi-channel demand gen campaign strategies that we’ve devised for our B2B clients. That said, this article is really about how SFDC is trying to play catch-up in the B2B social media marketing arena. And while these new tools may be valuable additions to the B2B marketer’s toolkit, this serves as an object lesson on what can happen when you’re slow in identifying and responding to customer demand and market opportunity.
Our own Stories
Lora Kratchounova on Forbes Agency Council
Inbound works if you have the time, resources and stamina to let it work. But today, getting prospects to convert is becoming increasingly difficult, and Inbound is no longer the tried-and-true pipeline generation machine that it once was. Today’s analytics capabilities put much more responsive and nimble marketing strategies within every marketer’s grasp than in Inbound program, alone, can generate. Without the technology tools to uncover immediate opportunities, and without close alignment and coordination between your sales and marketing teams, you’re risking too much by relying solely on an Inbound strategy.
Today, agile marketing organizations need to take advantage of new technologies and a new methodology that can accelerate the sales cycle: account-based funnel management (ABFM). ABFM requires seamless collaboration between marketing and sales to land and expand the accounts that matter most to your business. There’s a role for Inbound within ABFM, but Inbound isn’t the centerpiece and it certainly isn’t the sole strategy.
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