What to measure and optimize with Account-Based Marketing

Mobile Marketing

In the fourth part of his guide to Account-Based Marketing, Gavin Dimmock, Vice President and GM of EMEA for Terminus, looks at measurement. 

If you’ve been following Terminus’ Account-Based Marketing (ABM) blog series, you’ll remember reading from the last article that evaluating and optimizing your ABM campaigns is the most vital and final step of building your strategy. Without this step, there’s no way to tangibly show the impact of your hard work. Let’s dive right in to learning about how this is done!

ABM is a very dynamic approach. As target accounts become interested, start engaging with your brand, and begin their customer journeys, they must be met with stage-relevant content. However, ABM optimization is very different from traditional inbound marketing optimization. For legacy inbound marketers, optimization means boosting form-fill numbers and decreasing cost-per-lead (CPL).

On the other hand, ABM marketers are optimizing multiple parts of their funnels with one goal in mind: more revenue, faster. At the end of the day, achieving revenue goals is the only thing that truly matters. No salesperson or executive will care about the number of acquired leads if they don’t convert into customers down the road. Account-based marketers are not only optimizing the top of their funnels, but they’re also measuring pipeline velocity, new deal rates, and even customer retention and expansion.

What you should optimize
The most important points to tweak and refine (in descending order of the funnel) are as follows:

Optimize cost-per-impression (CPM) and cost-per-click (CPC) by alternating ad creatives, refining target account lists, and, if you’re a Terminus customer, working with your Digital Media Manager to receive maximum coverage and ad spend efficiency.

Account Engagement
Refine the amount of engaged accounts (and how engaged they are) by creating stronger messages aligned to personalized web pages or content experiences. Immersive, binge-worthy content is a great way to achieve this.

Opportunity Creation Rate
Boost the number of target accounts that become new opportunities by refining your account engagement framework. This is comparable to lead qualification frameworks in traditional inbound marketing. Work with your sales teams to encourage them to pay special attention to target account lists.

Pipeline Velocity
Boost the speed at which your opportunities become customers by deploying automated, stage-based campaigns that deliver content relevant to their opportunity stage. Decide the content needed to help prospects make a purchase with your sales teams. They are talking to customers and prospects every day (virtually or in-person) so no one understands their needs better.

Close Rates
Increase the percentage of target accounts that become customers by creating tighter target segments that receive more tailored ads and messaging. Refine your ideal customer based on your most important customers today.

Account-Based Marketing KPIs
The most important ABM metrics to measure generally include:

  • Target Accounts
  • Engaged Target Accounts
  • Target Account Opportunity Creation
  • Target Accounts Won
  • Customers Retained (Net Retention)
  • Customers Expanded (Gross Retention)

For a deep dive into these KPIs and their corresponding stages, check out this infographic.

If this list feels overwhelming, remember that whatever you choose to measure (and not measure) impacts your decision-making. By focusing on the entire funnel, you will create better, all-encompassing, and consistent brand experiences for prospects. As a result, this will give you a strong competitive edge in the form of trust.

Metrics that don't matter
As a marketer in today’s inbound-obsessed world, you’ve likely measured “leads” as an important KPI at some point in your career. Unfortunately, leads are a poor and unreliable revenue indicator, considering that less than 1 per cent of all leads become customers. While you should never reject a hot lead, they’re just not as important as they once were. That’s why only 9 per cent of leading ABM programs today care about and measure leads. Stop wasting time and resources dedicated to focusing on leads!
ABM has become the modern gold standard for B2B marketing because it focuses heavily on efficiency. How? By concentrating on the most likely buyers for your company and dedicating resources only to them. This tactic frees you up to spend more time creating exceptional experiences for, and interactions with, a smaller, specific audience that’s far more likely to buy your product or service. If you’re still hesitant to move away from measuring leads, then think about a competitor who is personalizing relevant resources for a prospect who you are targeting at the same time. Who do you think is more likely to win that account? Ditch the leads and measure opportunities instead. Opportunities are a much stronger indicator of revenue and better align with what your sales teams are measuring. When sales and marketing focus on the same goal, you’ll have a much higher potential of achieving and even exceeding your revenue expectations. Remember: if you’re trying to market to everyone, you’re marketing to no one.

Marketing and sales must now own opportunities together at all stages of the funnel. Revenue teams today have endless segmenting capabilities thanks to a wealth of first- and third-party data, more channels than ever before, and analytics to measure success at every stage. Soon, ABM will just become the dominant revenue strategy for today’s leading B2B companies  because it is all about targeted, smart, and efficient revenue growth. Terminus can help with all of this and more – schedule a demo today!