ABM/ABX

The Single Most Painful Mistake We See B2B Revenue Orgs Making Today

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January 1, 2023

3 mins read

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The Single Most Painful Mistake We See B2B Revenue Orgs Making Today

After spending multiple years at TOPO and Gartner and working with tons of high growth organizations and their sales and marketing teams, one mistake continues to make life painful for many – chasing shiny objects or “the next big thing.”

I’m not an advocate of burying our collective heads in the sand, but too many decisions are made as knee-jerk reactions or perceived “sizzle” that aren’t aligned to an overarching business strategy. We’ve seen this happen repeatedly in sales and martech over the last decade.

    • Marketing automation: still a hot topic all these years later, but most organizations never fully utilize the capabilities of marketing automation platforms before moving on to the next tool.
    • Social marketing: organizations have historically stretched themselves thin on every platform and failed to reach full potential before shifting all resources to the newest platform – does every business really need a Tik Tok strategy?
    • Content marketing: we’ve always created content and still do, but a large portion of our budgets moved into content creation and many marketers ended up with metrics like “blog posts per week” even if each blog post gets single-digit views. The latest debate here is if AI is going to take our lunch money and write everything for us (some of the tools are pretty awesome…).
    • Account-based marketing (ABM): throw a rock and you’ll hit a seller or marketer that doesn’t know what ABM is, but we seem to ignore that. We expect results too quickly and too often have misaligned efforts that more closely resemble targeted demand generation than what account-based strategy should be. 
    • Go-to-market strategy (GTM): the combination of all the tactics we use (any of the previously mentioned) to convince prospects to become customers is the latest craze. This is not new, but actually illustrates the point of how quickly we jump from one thing to the next and don’t put proper emphasis on strategyBy chasing shiny objects, we continue to isolate 99% of the total addressable market (TAM) and are selling to the 1% of folks just like us. Let’s stop the madness!

If you think I’m a curmudgeon, you’re right. It’s been a personal point of frustration for a while and one that I work out daily through conversations with people just like you. The voice of the customer has never been more important and there’s one thing they want more than anything else…

Simplicity.

Talk like your customer. Write like your customer. Explain like your customer. 

ABM is a perfect example. The acronym creates a problem we’ve been trying to solve for years as it only focuses on marketing. It screams “marketing did this and it’s great and you’re going to love it and it is going to get deals and we want high fives.” 

That’s why many have used account-based strategy or account-based experience (ABX) to better position the important role that the collective sales, marketing, and customer success teams must play to do this well.

Do you wish you spent even more time and money on accounts most likely to buy?

I hope you said yes. That is account-based put simply. That is what we do best at Demandbase. And get this – it actually works. There’s a whole other rant I could go on about how some account-based technology isn’t fulfilling the grand promise that’s made in the sales cycle, but we’ll save that for another day.

Jeffrey L. Cohen, friend and incredible analyst at Gartner explains this eloquently – “No implementation of technology is going to magically bring sales and marketing together.”

We still need strategy that aligns sales, marketing and customer success. We can’t skip the meetings, time talking, shared metrics of success, and aligning technology to our most important business objectives.

Have sales or marketing challenges you want to talk about? Reach out. It’s my job to help you and I look forward to connecting. <3

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Chis Moody

Head of GTM Thought Leadership, Demandbase

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