It is becoming undeniably apparent that account-based marketing (ABM) is the future of B2B marketing. Marketers’ efforts to focus on accounts, rather than individuals, is paying increasingly high dividends and the industry is starting to take notice. According to The 2015 State of Account-Based Marketing Study conducted by SiriusDecisions, 92 percent of companies recognize the value of Account-Based Marketing and see the strategy as a ‘must have’ for B2B marketing.
The study, which was released today during our Marketing Innovation Summit for B2B, highlights the growing popularity of ABM strategies, with 52 percent of respondents stating that they currently have ABM pilot programs in place. Additionally, more than 60 percent of respondents said that they plan to invest in ABM technology within the next twelve months. The study’s data validates and supports our argument that B2B companies need to implement ABM solutions in order to modernize and streamline their digital marketing efforts. In response to the study, our CMO, Peter Isaacson, concluded that ABM is continuing to grow rapidly and went on to predict that it is increasingly becoming the “B2B strategy of choice.” Peter’s forecast is substantiated by the findings of today’s report, which prove that ABM marketing is definitely on the rise.
What is it about ABM that is turning it from a fringe marketing strategy into the darling of the B2B world? The answer lies in the boosted efficiency and productivity that companies derive from implementing a technology based account-based marketing solution. At its core, ABM allows organizations to align their marketing and sales departments to more actively focus on the company’s sales goals. Every participant in the State of Account-Based Marketing Study that practices ABM stated that their company is aligned with sales, with 34 percent of respondents saying that they are tightly aligned with the sales goal. Peter noted that ABM has led to “tremendous results” for companies as it has allowed marketers to shrug off their antiquated, non-targeted marketing tactics and focus on attracting, engaging and converting the sales leads and accounts that are most likely to buy.
While the future may be bright, the study also confirmed that ABM is still in its early stages as only 20 percent of respondents stated that they have had an ABM program in place for more than a year. Further signs of ABM’s infancy were apparent in the study’s data, as 47 percent of respondents felt that their ABM teams are insufficiently skilled and that their marketing teams require more support to succeed at ABM. SiriusDecisions’ vice president and group director, Megan Heuer, noted that the survey results prove that ABM is at an important development stage and that it will be vital that marketers acquire the necessary skills and resources to “fully realize the promise of ABM.”
B2B marketing’s future is impossible to predict, but the interest in ABM is very real and will only increase as more companies realize the tremendous benefits of shifting to a more targeted marketing approach. By aligning sales and marketing goals and focusing efforts on the most valued accounts, B2B organizations can expect to generate more quality sales opportunities and close more deals.