Joanne Camarce

5 Steps to Integrate Your Content Marketing with Your ABM Strategy

by Joanne Camarce

Today, 91% of large companies are deploying an account based marketing (ABM) strategy. 

Seeing as 35% of companies with a full ABM strategy are enjoying 50+% ROI, it’s important to ensure your content strategy aligns with your ABM plan. 

This means a shake up of your conventional content strategy to integrate ABM thinking. By tailoring content to your top accounts, you’re primed to target higher revenues. 

We compiled some clever techniques to integrate your content strategy with your ABM strategy. 

 

What is account based marketing (ABM)? 

The traditional funnel in sales and marketing looks like a top-heavy triangle. You capture as many leads as you can, personalize to nurture, and then convert the relevant customers.

With account based marketing (ABM), the sales funnel is turned on its head. 

Rather than capturing a broad spectrum of vaguely relevant customers and personalizing to everyone, ABM marketing invites you to specialize first. 

The idea is to focus your efforts on capturing accounts that mimic your highest revenue customers.

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In the ABM funnel, you research your key prosperous accounts first. Next, you tailor marketing to lookalike accounts. From here, you personalize your marketing campaign to specific key decision-makers within those accounts.

The last step is to build broad relationships across those accounts to upsell, cross-sell, and garner referrals. 

The ABM method brings results.

Seventy-six percent of companies say that the ABM tactic improves ROI, while 86% say that ABM effort increases the deal close rate. Eighty-one percent of companies also agree that ABM techniques boost upselling and cross-selling rates. 

 

How to integrate your content strategy and your ABM Strategy

While ABM marketing may be the coolest kid on the block, you’ve likely already worked hard on your current content strategy. 

Pivot your content strategy to integrate with your successful ABM strategy using these simple tactics. 

#1: Research your target accounts

The key to ABM is to pinpoint your best accounts and replicate them. 

Identify your top-performing customers and note the positives of their customer profile, such as high revenue, quick payment, hands-off implementation, etc.

Find where your target accounts meet with similar industry profiles, such as trade shows and conferences, online groups, LinkedIn connections, particular magazines, professional forums, and so on. 

Identify the trends and conversations among these groups. Interact with these collectives and media outlets to understand where key pain-points lie that your product could solve. 

Now you have a clear idea of your targeted account, their issues, and your value to them. 

Try using keyword software to map trends through popular search terms that your key accounts use. Since over 92% of search terms get fewer than 10 monthly searches, it’ll be easier to spot the top trending topics. 

Tools like Ahrefs and Keyhole are helpful to see trending keywords for target accounts.

#2: Research your key decision makers

Consider your top-performing accounts. Identify who the decision makers are within those accounts and map their behaviors.

Learn about their lives, habits, online behaviors, hobbies, professional philosophies, digital communities, real-life social networks, and so on.

Take those profiles and look for similar decision makers within your target accounts. Perform a similar audit on these characters and find where the two groups collide.

The idea is to target your content strategy to engage decision makers where they’re most vulnerable to influence. If you find all mid-level budget holders of real estate firms play golf, you need to target your content to the putting green.

Take digital agency, Atos.

Using stakeholder mapping techniques and relationship tracking, they helped a prominent gas and electricity company position itself as a digital disruptor within 12 months.

#3: Support with a personalized, optimized content strategy

Since a successful ABM strategy aims to connect with particular key accounts, your content strategy should align with the interests that engage the decision-makers of these accounts.

To best do this, over 55% of content marketers use the pillar and cluster content strategy. 

Create comprehensive pillar content pieces that explain how your product solves common problems your target clients are having. Cluster supplementary content linking from and to this pillar piece to explain the concepts within it. 

By planning your content strategy in this pillar and cluster format, each pillar can target a different decision-maker persona. This enables you to deliver personalized, optimized content to increase visibility to your key accounts. 

On the one hand, SEO ABM content will increase your visibility on Google. As half of all search traffic goes to the top search result on Google, you need to ensure your content is SEO ready.

Equally, targeted campaigns meet the needs of your ideal clients to increase conversions and reduce wastage. Personalized ABM techniques lead to a 2% rise in deal closure and a 40% decline in marketing campaign costs. 

Take hospitality mattress brand Tempur Sealy.

account-based-marketing-example-1

 

Employing an account based marketing strategy to focus their efforts on particular hotel accounts, Tempur Sealy identified top accounts and their decision maker.

The mattress brand created online content, direct mail, sales playbooks, rep materials, and offline marketing materials to target ideal accounts.

The team was able to connect with over half of the targets, scheduling appointments with a fifth. This equaled close to $25 million in sales revenue.

#4: Capture leads with targeted landing pages

Target your ideal accounts by using your pillar content as lead bait. Funnel prospects to lead capture landing pages through targeted ad campaigns that advertise your content.

Create landing pages where customers input contact details in return for content and information.

Provide content that helps to solve a common problem that your target accounts face. This helps to establish your authority and expertise early, while encouraging prospects to click your link. 

Based on the landing page from which the lead is captured, sales and marketing teams can better approach leads with targeted solutions related to their current issues. 

Bear in mind that longer landing pages can increase conversions by 30%.

Take learning management system, Absorb.

account-based-marketing-example-2

 

Absorb offers a library of whitepapers that provide information solutions, research, and industry insights for different customer personas, from digital educators to recruiters.

Each link leads to a landing page where visitors can download these whitepapers in return for seven pieces of contact data. 

This puts Absorb in a great position for future ABM marketing. On the one hand, the tech firm knows which customer came through which landing page, identifying their pain-points. On the other, Absorb now has many data points to contact.

#5: Optimize your content process

To reach your targeted account profile, you need to keep your content relevant. This means releasing content regularly, to the right platforms, in the correct manner.

Many marketers use content tools to help improve this process with marketing automation. 

To schedule social media campaigns, some marketers use tools like Hootsuite, Buffer, and Later. To build and schedule email campaigns, try tools like Mailchimp, Clickfunnels, and ActiveCampaign.

Remember that content migration can severely hamper the speed at which you can deliver marketing campaigns, so ensure you have a tool like Wordable for easy document migration.

 

Conclusion

Now that you have a better idea of how to fuse your content strategy with your newfound account based marketing strategy, you’ll find it easier to target top accounts.

It’s best to focus on mimicking your best 20% of accounts, as these are the ones who tend to bring in the highest revenue with the least effort.

Get the 2020 Insights Report: Rethinking the B2B Buyer Journey

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Joanne Camarce
Joanne Camarce is a digital marketing expert specializing in SEO, eCommerce, and social media. She loves meeting new people and embraces challenges. When she's not wearing her marketing hat, you'll find Joanne perfecting her art and music skills.



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