This year, Demandbase has a big presence at Dreamforce. Not only do we have a booth, but we’re also hosting a plethora of events right in our own office. Today, we kicked off the first workshop in our Account-Based Marketing series. It was a lively discussion between our CMO, Peter Isaacson, and Alan Saldich, VP of Marketing at Cloudera. As they broke for questions, the crowd seemed focused on a particular topic: building their target account list.
Some of them were concerned that their lists needed to be a certain size or contain a specific number of companies. While we at Demandbase have our DB3K—a list of 3,000 accounts that we focus on to attract, engage, convert and measure against, your target account list doesn’t have to be that big (or that small). The truth is, there is no right answer for how big your list should be. We have customers that strategically target 300 accounts, and we also have customers that target 7,000.
Crawl, Walk, Run
As Peter shared with the audience, you can also start small and scale up your strategy as you go. When we first embarked on our ABM journey, we were focused on 1,500 target accounts. We wanted to validate both our methodology and the list itself. As we obtained great results and expanded our sales team, we scaled up our ABM efforts.
Reiterate & Refresh
The great thing about your target account list is the fact that it’s evolving and maturing to best fit the needs of your organization. While you may start out with a number of specific accounts, the list will change as you close customers and discover new avenues to grow your business. We at Demandbase review and refresh our target account list across the sales and marketing team once a quarter.
Involve Sales (and not just in the beginning)
While you will certainly work with Sales to build your target account list, it’s important to remember that the collaboration doesn’t end there. Instead, Sales will be your partner in closing the accounts that matter the most. At Cloudera, AEs and SDRs work together with Marketing to conduct outbound marketing, email nurturing and outbound follow up to drive registrants to in-person events. Here at Demandbase, our SDRs orient their efforts around our DB3K. They use our own product, Sales Accelerator, to get insight into the accounts we care about the most. With Sales Accelerator, our sales reps get the data they need quickly, which provides them with valuable buying signals from the accounts they are focused on.