You’ve been given the assignment of incorporating Account-Based Marketing (ABM) into your demand generation strategy this year. Where do you begin? Unfortunately, the approach most B2B marketers choose by default is wildly disconnected from marketplace realities. Marketers are under the impression that in order to run scalable ABM campaigns, display advertising and retargeting is the only approach to take—and that couldn’t be further from the truth.
Display Advertising and ABM Disconnect
Let’s think about this for a moment, the one channel known for ‘banner burn out’ and poor engagement rates is considered to be the leading tactic for executing ABM. Why? ABM is a sophisticated marketing strategy that relies on volume and scale. How the hectic are you going to achieve success with banner ads in today’s climate? It’s amazing that marketers are acting like lemmings on this one. Why have more marketers not challenged this obvious disconnect and looked for better methods of ABM execution?
Going a step further, there is little to no qualification of appropriate sites to deliver ABM campaigns for B2B marketers. Sure, you can filter out mobile apps and such, but business related website filters are not available. Since ABM heavily relies on retargeting methodologies, let’s look at that scenario:
Your campaign is following around professionals identified as working at one of your target accounts. The campaign follows them onto sites such as ESPN, The Weather Channel, and This Old House with banner ads promoting your latest analyst report on IT Security Software. What’s wrong with this picture? There are zero signs of intent in this scenario…you are stalking a user while they check sports highlights from last night. You’re a savvy professional; ask yourself, how often do you click on those banner ads? NEVER.
The even funnier thing here is, where’s the B2B-level filter marketers are always so obsessed with? When B2B marketers run campaigns, one of the first questions they ask are ‘where will my content be shown…give me examples of the sites…are they B2B specific…are they IT specific…what’s their audience demo?’ It’s 10x the third degree. But when it comes to ABM display and retargeting it’s a free for all. Marketers trust in the tactic against all reason and data, and run the campaign anyways. I’m here to tell you, you can do better.
Content Powered Account-Based Marketing
Let’s daydream for a moment and imagine a world of perfect ABM scenarios. It probably includes one-to-one in-person meetings with the buying committees at your target accounts…yeah, I can’t give you that, talk to Sales ;) But what about this, what if you could guarantee that your content would be exposed to professionals working at your target accounts while they actively research business-related topics? No banner ads, no bogus irrelevant website placements – we’re talking real B2B style intent and native content. In the exact moment your target prospect is downloading a white paper on IT Security, wouldn’t you like to be there to metaphorically say, “Hey, while you’re at it, I think you’d also find my report really interesting, here’s a copy?” WHAT MARKETER WOULDN’T WANT THAT?
…And this my friends is content powered Account-Based Marketing (ABM). Luckily, this is not a dream, it does exist. Using content syndication with B2B-specific networks your campaign immediately narrows in on intent-based prospects doing research. Next, layering in account-level targeting and account-level lead filters, you’ve created the perfect ABM campaign.
Be Logical with Your ABM Strategy
Promoting your B2B content in a B2B content environment where professionals are showing real intent is meaningful—it just makes sense. I’m not saying stop using display advertising and retargeting to execute ABM campaigns, but why not test a content-based solution that offers more contextual alignment to your goals? Diversify, if you will. And remember, above all else make sure you are working with a solution that can offer you the reach and scale necessarily to deliver meaningful results.
To learn more about NetLine’s content powered account-based marketing solutions and on-demand portal, go to the NetLine Portal.