Effective Measurement of ABM Depends on These Four Steps

Marketers ask me at least twice a week how to better assess the performance of their company’s Account-Based Marketing Program (ABM).

Although I like to give these colleagues a clear answer, I often go a little deeper. The truth is that you must first build four strategic pillars before you can effectively measure the success of your ABM efforts.

  1. Identifying your target accounts
  2. Prioritizing your audience and resources for a particular campaign based on a tiered system
  3. Gaining agreement between Sales and Marketing on trigger events
  4. Tracking and optimizing results across a shared scorecard

All four are fundamental and essential components that must exist for the numbers to be calculated.

Step 1: Identify the target accounts

ABM practice is about accessing and converting the most suitable accounts that provide the best ROI for your business. So it makes sense that an important step in creating a winning ABM program is to decide what kind of business you want.

To do this, you need to create an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), which defines the type of business that fits perfectly with your product or service.

Step 2: Prioritizing your audience and resources for a particular campaign based on a tiered system

After creating your ICP and compiling a list of target accounts, you begin to determine who should receive the most attention and what organizational resources will be used to give them that attention.

Important considerations include:

Campaigns: Which marketing campaign does your team run, when, and what type of account on the destination list fits the content best?

The tools: What tools in your existing technology stack or other business intelligence applications can you use to collect account information? The more information you have, the better you can combine specific accounts with specific campaigns and assign leads to layers.

The resources: The multifunctional alignment between the marketing, sales, and customer success teams is a key factor for ABM’s success. Which message is used for which accounts? Who will have specific customers or levels? What are the budgetary considerations? Correct these details well in advance so that the clutter does not interfere with your performance.

Step 3: Gaining agreement between Sales and Marketing on trigger events

In the ABM world, a triggering event is a consequence that affects one of your target accounts and/or a resulting action that can often indicate the opening of new business opportunities.

That is why your sales and marketing teams must agree on the limits of interaction that members of both roles assume. For that you have…

  1. Do your research: What trigger events are the indication or the potential for purchasing account purchases?
  2. Achieve consensus: to be effective, sales and marketing must match the main triggers.
  3. Create an SLA: determine who will be notified about specific triggers and what is the transfer from there? Enter a detailed workflow and a deadline for the different steps.

Step 4: Tracking and optimizing results across a shared scorecard

Once you’ve identified and prioritized important accounts and implemented a process to respond to trigger events, it’s time to collect the data. But a word of wisdom: to really take advantage of the ABM process, sales and marketing must bring data to a centralized scorecard that perfectly maps the pipeline and the income statement.

Also check out an ABM application that allows you to track, compare and optimize results in a simplified dashboard. This will align your efforts…

  • Targeted accounts
  • Engagement statistics
  • Opportunities created and potential value
  • Accounts closed/won and their value

Again, this scorecard will not be the same for all organizations. Look for ABM technology that can adapt your data hub to the buyer’s journey and lifecycle.