Next-Level ABM: Decoding the 7 Best-Kept Secrets to Elevate Your Account-Based Marketing Game

Jaycen Thorgeirson
Founder & CEO
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Midjourney AI Prompt Engineering by JT 

In the dynamic world of marketing, where innovation drives success, the key to unlocking unparalleled heights in your Account-Based Marketing (ABM) strategy lies in understanding and implementing some of the industry's best-kept secrets. From establishing lasting impressions to personalizing communications, these strategies can catapult your ABM game to new horizons. 

Let's dive into the seven secrets that we feel will redefine and catapult your approach to ABM, helping you build better connections, capture attention, and foster relationships that endure.

1. Deliver Something of High Value to Your Target Audience: The Psychology of Meaningful Engagement

At the core of any strong relationship is the act of giving. When you deliver something of high value to your target audience, you tap into a psychological principle known as reciprocity. This innate human tendency to respond in kind to gestures of goodwill can be harnessed to create lasting impressions within ABM. By providing tailored insights, resources, or experiences, you not only capture attention but also establish a strong foundation of trust.

A study by Experian reveals that personalized emails deliver six times higher transaction rates. Imagine sending an executive a personalized report on emerging trends in their industry – a gesture that showcases your commitment to their success. This approach doesn't just make you memorable; it positions you as a thought leader, making it more likely that your brand will be top of mind for future opportunities.

Here’s a couple of ideas to get your creative juices flowing: 

Idea 1: Surprise a tech-savvy executive with a personalized augmented or virtual reality experience that immerses them in your product's capabilities. 

Idea 2: Curate an exclusive box of industry-relevant books and tools, transforming your outreach into a treasure trove of knowledge tailored to their interests. 

2. Leverage Direct Mail with Executives and Decision Makers: Breathing New Life into Tangible Engagement

In a digital age, the power of tangible connections should not be underestimated. Direct mail might seem like a relic, but it's a goldmine for reaching executives who are often swamped with digital clutter. While webinars, whitepapers, and emails may be overlooked, a well-crafted direct mail piece stands out. Executives, wary of unsolicited emails, are more likely to engage with personalized, tangible experiences.

For instance, according to the Data & Marketing Association, direct mail response rates for house lists are significantly higher than digital channels. A creative approach like sending empty iPad boxes to top executives before a conference, inviting them to collect the iPad at their event booth, can lead to meaningful in-person interactions that digital tactics struggle to achieve. The key takeaway: don't underestimate the impact of the tangible.

Here’s a couple of direct mail ideas to get executives engaged: 

Idea 1: Design an interactive puzzle tailored to their brand, when solved, unveils a hidden message and an invitation to an exclusive executive roundtable. 

Idea 2: Craft a personalized, storybook that makes them the hero of the story, piquing curiosity and forging a memorable connection.

3. Use AI Personality Tools to Tailor Communication: The Art of Building Connection Through Understanding

Personalization goes beyond just addressing recipients by name. It's about understanding their communication style and tailoring your message to resonate with them. This personalized approach enhances engagement, retention, and connection. Tools like Humantic and Crystal Knows offer insights into recipients' communication preferences, enabling you to adjust your style accordingly.

Research by Epsilon reveals that 80% of consumers are more likely to do business with a company if it offers personalized experiences. Imagine sending an analytical executive a detailed report while a creative decision-maker receives an eye-catching infographic. Such tailored attention signals your genuine interest in understanding their preferences, which can foster deeper connections. This approach isn't just limited to emails and landing pages; it can be seamlessly integrated into direct mail and other marketing communications.

Here’s a couple of ideas to take Personalization to the next-level: 

Idea 1: Utilize AI-powered language analysis to craft emails that mirror the recipient's communication style, making your messages feel hand tailored for them.

Idea 2: Develop an interactive concierge that engages prospects in real-time conversations, adjusting its tone and demeanor based on individual preferences.

4. Use Social Intelligence to Better Understand Your Audience: Insights for Precision Targeting

One of the core tenets of ABM is personalization based on an account's current initiatives and challenges. This necessitates real-time insights into their activities. Social intelligence provides a treasure trove of such insights. By monitoring social activity and subscribing to services like Google Alerts, you can gain a deeper understanding of your target accounts' evolving needs.

According to a survey by Demand Gen Report, 77% of B2B buyers say they won't engage with a salesperson until they've done their research. Unlike PR-driven articles, social data offers agility in adjusting messages based on newly discovered information. For instance, enterprise-level social intelligence tools like LinkedIn help align your messaging with target accounts' real-time activities, adding precision to your approach.

Here’s a couple of ideas on how you can leverage social intelligence in your ABM strategy: 

Idea 1: Deploy AI-driven sentiment analysis to decipher social conversations, enabling you to align your outreach with their emotional state and resonate on a deeper level. 

Idea 2: Develop a proprietary algorithm that correlates social media engagement spikes with upcoming initiatives, empowering you to pre-emptively offer tailored solutions.

5. Create Experiences that Weave in Your Narrative: The Power of Storytelling in ABM

Storytelling isn't just for bedtime tales; it's a potent tool in ABM. Weaving your brand's narrative into your communication strategy creates a unique emotional connection. Imagine sending decision-makers an immersive virtual experience that takes them on a journey through your company's evolution. This approach isn't just informative; it leaves a lasting impression by immersing them in your story.

According to a study by OneSpot and Marketing Insider Group, storytelling can increase the value of a product or service by over 20 times. By integrating your narrative into experiential campaigns, you're tapping into the innate human preference for stories, which results in deeper engagement and stronger brand affinity.

Here’s some examples of leveraging experiential storytelling: 

Idea 1: Collaborate with renowned immersive theater artists to design an ABM event that transforms your brand story into an interactive theatrical experience. 

Idea 2: Craft a series of augmented reality-enhanced direct mail pieces that reveal different chapters of your brand narrative, compelling recipients to explore and engage.

6. Create Exclusive One-to-One C-level Engagement: Cultivating Personal Connections for Impactful Results

Personal connections go a long way, particularly when nurtured one-to-one. Assigning specific employees to cultivate relationships with buyer personas at target accounts is important. Yet, its even better if they are on the same peer level. Starting with an email or direct mail from an executive that is on their corresponding level and following up with a phone call can create a connection that's hard to ignore.

A study by LinkedIn shows that C-level executives are 1.5 times more likely to respond to a quality connection request. After the C-level executives, extend this approach to VPs, Account executives and other counterparts wherever possible. By matching your team members with relevant counterparts at the prospect's end, you're fostering a network of connections that transcends mere transactions.

Here’s some ideas to get some peer-to-peer connections growing: 

Idea 1: Introduce the concept of becoming an “Ambassador" – influential employees who become virtual confidantes to C-level executives, providing insider insights and forging enduring connections. 

Idea 2: Curate personalized virtual retreats, where executives engage in exclusive experiences and provide a platform for meaningful discussions and relationships to grow. Or develop a Podcast for peer-to-peer discussions to facilitate connections and deepen relationships.

7. Start With Impact: Make a Bold Statement in the ABM Arena

While personalized ads, emails, and webinars are standard in ABM, their impact can sometimes be limited. Research by Digital Doughnut found that a staggering 60% of digital advertising is ignored. That's why it's imperative to start with something that carries high value right from the beginning. Whether it's a strategic gift, a dimensional direct mail piece, an exclusive event, or an immersive experience, capturing attention early sets the stage for lasting engagement.

By eschewing low-impact tactics in favor of high-value strategies, you differentiate yourself from the competition and lay a strong foundation for building meaningful relationships. The advantage of beginning with impact is that it forms a cornerstone upon which you can build a comprehensive ABM campaign, making subsequent engagements more effective.

Here’s a couple of ideas to make lasting impact:

Idea 1: Craft a meticulously designed AR-driven gifting journey for your target accounts. Start with sending an elegantly packaged, personalized gift that holds an AR-powered treasure map. When recipients scan the map with their smartphones, a virtual world emerges, leading them on a captivating digital adventure. This adventure could be a guided tour of your brand's story or a puzzle-solving challenge that unveils exclusive content or access. This immersive blend of tangible gifting and augmented reality not only captures attention but also engages recipients in an unforgettable experience that they'll eagerly share.

Idea 2: Imagine creating a physical representation of your product that's both dimensional and interactive. Send prospects a meticulously crafted 3D model of your product that comes to life through the lens of their smartphone via AR. The blend of tactile engagement through dimensional mail and the transformative power of augmented reality creates a multi-sensory journey that's not only impactful but also resonates deeply, paving the way for meaningful follow-up conversations.

Unlocking the Vault of ABM Success

Decoding the secrets of next-level ABM involves tapping into psychological principles, embracing tangible engagement, personalizing communication, and weaving stories that resonate. From leveraging social intelligence to crafting one-to-one connections, these secrets offer a roadmap that is sure to fast track your success and make your colleagues jealous. 

The key takeaway is to establish connections that endure, build trust, and elevate your ABM strategy through delivering value at every stage of the journey. Hopefully this helps you unlock the vault of ABM success and embark on a better ABM journey.

If you want a taste of unconventional ABM magic that defies norms, drop us a line. Your email won't just land in our inbox; it'll land you a backstage pass to innovation

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