Business dynamics have changed significantly in the last few years with COVID, war, and now looming recession. As economic conditions continue to shift, marketing is under tremendous pressure to ‘do more with less.’ Despite budget reductions and organizational changes, delivering value has become even more important.
In order to maximize the return on marketing investment, marketers are going back to basics and focusing on a few strategies that deliver the most value. Account Based Marketing (ABM) remains a top priority for most B2B SaaS companies.
76% of marketers are investing 10-30% of their overall budget into ABM activities.
Account Based Marketing has been a key strategy for marketers for the last 20 years or so, but it has changed significantly in the last few years due to evolving buyer behavior and more sophisticated platforms. By using these platforms, marketers can analyze behavior, identify in-market buyers, and offer personalized experiences for the buying groups. Let’s dive into the cutting-edge trends that are reshaping ABM and the way it’s done.
Here are the hot trends in the ABM space.
Goodbye MQLs, hello opportunities
It’s outdated for marketers to be rated on the volume of MQLs. What even is an MQL in a world where everyone is aligned to the organization’s revenue goal?Today, CEOs want their marketers to actively contribute to the pipeline. Most marketers have already started aligning their marketing activities and strategies towards bringing in qualified opportunities. An Account Based Marketing motion is a strategic way to increase the number and quality of opportunities entering the sales pipeline.
Focus on buyer group identification
Buying behavior in B2B has greatly matured over time. B2B companies today involve multiple decision-makers in every purchase decision. As per Forrester’s B2B Buying Survey, 60% of B2B buyers report that there are at least four individuals involved in any buying decision.
The identification of this buying committee or buyer group becomes critical for the success of an ABM program. Within B2B setups, there are so many factors to consider when making a big budget purchase. What is the cost of implementation, resources required for maintenance, integration with existing systems, and so on. Each of the buying committee members will have specific jobs to complete. Marketers need to focus on the entire buyer group to enable all decision makers to come to an easy consensus.
B2B experiences have changed significantly over the past few years, similar to B2C experiences. Buyers want information that is relevant to the problems they care about, and they want to know how it will help them be more productive, improve efficiency, or save money. . Buyers expect a consistent and tailored experience from brand discovery to purchase
B2B marketers need marketing tools and solutions that can help them gauge buyer behavior and interest signals to develop deeper engagements with their target accounts and buyer groups through relevant experiences.
Real-time buyer enablement across channels
The advancement in martech has made it possible for us to capture real-time buyer signals and data. Every step in the buyer’s journey can now be identified to understand buyer expectations and requirements. Whether it’s the need to identify a problem or compare solutions, marketers are now empowered to get ahead of buyers and predict the next step.
This has enabled organizations to implement comprehensive omnichannel ABM strategies which can deliver true real-time buyer experiences.
From customer acquisition to customer lifecycle
While most marketers use Account Based Marketing strategies to grow their pipeline and acquire new logos, it’s increasingly being used to upsell and crosssell to existing clients. Relationships are the key to ABM, so it is no surprise marketers are focusing on expanding their existing accounts.
More and more companies now focus on existing accounts as major sources of revenue. In fact, 43% of B2B marketers are leveraging Account Based Marketing programs to grow existing accounts. For these marketers, finding upsell and crosssell opportunities is the top priority.
These trends have emerged as a result of rapid technological advancements in the field of ABM and the expectations from marketers to deliver more value with less investment. With 87% of B2B marketers saying that their ABM initiatives consistently outperform other marketing investments, it’s critical for marketers to keep up with these ABM trends in 2023 H2.
Want to learn more about the latest trends in ABM? Understand how you can make the most of your ABM implementation.
Read all about this and more in our latest report: The State of ABM in 2023