Here at Demand Spring, we recently released our latest research on the State of Account-Based Marketing. The report showcases how B2B marketers across North America are executing their account-based marketing (ABM) programs, and the results they are seeing.
Through our research, we found out just how effective ABM can be in driving revenue for B2B marketers. It also revealed many opportunities for marketers to improve.
The ROI of ABM
Let’s start with the good news: more than half of marketers surveyed reported their ABM programs generated more revenue than other marketing efforts. A third of marketers have seen a return on investment greater than 50%, and an impressive 12% have seen a return greater than 200%.
This further reinforces our stance that when Account-Based Marketing programs are designed and implemented properly, they can serve as a revenue engine.
The struggle is real. Our research also uncovered a not-so-great insight: marketers still can’t crack the code on reporting on ROMI.
Our survey found that almost a quarter of marketers (24%) were unsure whether their ABM efforts were performing better than other strategies, and 26% were uncertain of the ROI they could attribute to their ABM programs.
With the tools and talent available today, the main cause of failing to report on ROMI is simple: marketers are overcomplicating it.
But it doesn’t have to be a convoluted process. When building out your measurement dashboard for your ABM programs, you should focus on three key areas. Yes, you heard right. Just three.
ABM pioneers ITSMA originally developed the “three R’s” framework, a tried and tested methodology for measuring the impact of your ABM programs. The three metrics include:
Measuring ABM success: the three R’s framework
Account-based marketing is targeted by nature, and so should be your approach to the “reputation” that you are looking to establish through your ABM programs.
Instead of going the traditional broad-branding route of looking to enhance your position in the marketplace, with ABM, you target influential stakeholders within your target accounts.
This is measurable through:
1. Net Promoter Score: this first-hand feedback from customers provides invaluable insight into their satisfaction level of your product or services, and your company overall. The NPS of your named accounts should be tracked throughout the duration of your ABM program.
2. Social media engagement: track whether the account stakeholders are engaging with your social content.
The “relationship” element of the framework refers to the strength and quality of connections with your target accounts. In other words, it evaluates how well a company is able to engage and establish relationships with their target accounts.
To successfully measure the relationship element in ABM, it’s important to gather feedback from both key decision makers at the account level and from broader stakeholders within the account. By continuously monitoring and strengthening this aspect of ABM, you can build lasting partnerships with your target accounts.
1. Campaign engagement: track the number of contacts within your named accounts who are engaging with your content i.e. email opens, content clicks, website engagement, etc.
2. Stakeholder touch points and meetings: are you landing meetings with your named account’s key stakeholders? Has there been an increase in the number of touch points?
3. Client referrals: Client referrals are the ultimate sign of client-satisfaction. Track whether your ABM efforts are influencing your referred business.
While all three elements of the “three Rs” framework are important, the focus on revenue is crucial for demonstrating ROI and proving the impact of your ABM efforts. It’s important to establish clear KPIs and track progress towards meeting them at both the account level and overall program level.
Key metrics to track include:
1. Pipeline %: track what percentage of your total sales pipeline is coming from your named accounts. Over time, this number should be on an upward trajectory.
2. Win-rate: what percentage of deals close from your target accounts, measured from qualified opportunity to close-won? We recommend also breaking it down further by win-rate by channel to zero in on which channels are performing to inform future campaign strategies and spend.
3. Average deal size:this is important to monitor since ABM requires a heavy-lift in terms of resources and revenue to execute. Tracking the average deal size will enable you to determine whether it is ultimately worth it.
4. Funnel velocity: understanding how fast customers are buying is essential for revenue forecasting purposes. Your CRO will love you for measuring this, right Carlos Hidalgo? Delivering highly-personalized, contextual content at every stage of the buyer journey should translate into closing deals faster. How do your ABM programs compare to your other marketing campaigns funnel velocity stats?
Measuring the effectiveness of your ABM programs does not need to be a complex undertaking, but it needs to be done. Marketers who fail to prove the ROI of any marketing investment runs the risk of losing their budgets for future programs — and more importantly — their strategic posture within their organization as a revenue driver.
Whether you are just starting on your ABM journey or looking to optimize your programs, we’d love to chat and see how we can help you.