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Customer Experiences

Make every moment matter

with account-based experiences

Grow customer lifetime value with actionable ABX strategies.

Updated August 2021

Andy Gaylord

Senior Content Marketing Manager

Account-based marketing (ABM) isn’t a secret anymore. Due to its remarkable success and mass adaptation, ABM has emerged as one of the most effective ways to attract and gain enterprise customers. ​ ​

During ABM campaigns, sales and marketing teams work closely together to target their ideal customers with personalized content and interactive digital experiences. The end goal of ABM is engaging with prospects on a human level and gaining their trust.

ABM is an excellent way to attract prospects and grow revenue, but the truth is, much of the strategy is focused at the top and the middle of the sales funnel. Once the deal is closed, alignment often fades and customer experiences change, leading to missed upselling opportunities and high churn rates.

Enter, account-based experience (ABX), a holistic business strategy that focuses beyond the sales funnel and engages customers with personalized digital experiences for their entire lifecycle.

In this article, we’ll take a close look at how embracing account-based experience leads to higher revenue and increased customer lifetime value.

Account-based experience is in style

Digital personalization and account-based marketing are going through a renaissance this year in the wake of the pandemic. Companies across all industries are stepping into new waters by embracing strategies that speak directly to individuals.

According to Forrester, a leading global research and advisory firm:

“The average ABM budget has risen to over $600,000, excluding headcount. This is up from $350,000 reported in 2019.”*

[Account-based experience]
True account-based experience moves beyond ABM and creates a unified system across every customer-facing aspect of a business.

Get your plays ready

Delivering personalized experiences to a large number of accounts in a genuine way is difficult. Static content is still the norm. Departments often aren’t working within the same system or software. Communication is disconnected. And, as a result, many business interactions lack feeling and are lost in a sea of noise. ​

Before you begin a new ABX campaign, make sure you’ve done your research and gotten your plays ready. ​ It takes time to determine your key accounts, compelling content to get their attention, and the right tools to develop and deliver your campaigns effectively. Having the right strategy in place will pay dividends down the road.

Let’s get started.

Determine your target accounts and ideal profiles

Identifying your target market and defining your ideal customer profile (ICP) is an essential step of every account-based strategy. From ZoomInfo to LinkedIn Sales Navigator, there are many tools out there that you can use to evaluate and discover ideal profiles for your business.

Begin by classifying accounts by industry and company size. Be sure to review sub-industries within major industry categories, develop a framework for evaluating buyer personas, and ask specific questions.

Example evaluating criteria questions:

→ What is the company Size?
→ What is the company's Annual Revenue?
→ Do they distribute globally?
→ Do they have a large customer-facing function?
→ What is the size of their marketing team?

Work together to build experiences for every touchpoint

Effective account-based strategies unify your teams. Make sure all of the customer-facing aspects of the business are working together. This includes marketing, sales, customer success, and services teams.

Determine the content you want to deliver at each phase of the journey. Once you’ve mapped out the critical touchpoints, develop content and digital experiences that can be customized to individuals and accounts.

When creating digital experiences:

→ Think outside of the box to stand out from the crowd with experiential content like games, animated stories, and interactive surveys.
→ Develop interactive experiences with rich media (videos and imagery) tasteful animations that allow customers to make choices.
→ Tell stories that connect on a human level.

Attract prospects with targeted campaigns

Attracting prospects for high-consideration purchases is difficult. Targeting is essential and the most effective targeting occurs when you achieve one-to-one personalization.

According to Forrester:

“When asked to compare accounts targeted for ABM activity, compared with those that weren't targeted, 82% of survey respondents said they saw as much as a 50% improvement in win rates on qualified opportunities that turned into closed deals.”*

To build targeted campaigns at scale you have to:

→ Easily personalize content for individuals.
→ Empower business teams to move quickly on their own.
→ Develop interactive experiences that stand out yet feel familiar.

Nurture accounts with a consultative approach

You’ve gotten your prospect’s attention. This is the middle of the sales funnel when the conversation changes. It’s time to show them that you’re their partner. To keep the deal going, and decrease time to close, you need to turn up the energy with genuine, targeted engagement that’s truly valuable for the individuals you're working with.

Show that you’re a good partner by:

→ Delivering content that’s not overly sales-driven.
→ Listening to their pain points.
→ Sharing relevant information that solves real problems.
→ Working toward a solution together.

Close deals with an engaging, humanized proposals

Proposals don’t sell. People do. When creating the final proposal, don’t forget all of the human touchpoints that made it happen. Rather than sending a one-off proposal, develop a single, interactive digital experience that connects the dots.

When creating digital experiences:

→ Include engaging content that reflects the entirety of the deal and where it’s going next.
→ Add individual details for key players.
→ Use a single source of truth that can be updated as the deal evolves.
→ Take actions and make updates based on individual engagement data.

Retain and expand with personalized portals and continued interaction

Customer retention is the key to lasting growth, but this is the stage where account-based experience often fades into the background.

Once a customer begins working with you, personalized engagement should increase even more. Before you begin the onboarding process, make sure your customer success and services teams have all the individual information they need to develop a genuine connection immediately.

Keep your customers and clients engaged by:

→ Creating individual portals with unique details.
→ Asking for feedback.
→ Connecting with them regularly about product updates.
→ Communicating across multiple channels.

By focusing on engagement throughout the lifecycle, you’ll boost customer satisfaction, discover upselling options, and gain new opportunities from referrals.

Thanks for engaging with Brandcast

Thanks for diving into modern account-based experience strategies with us. We believe in making human connections through digital means. As you develop your business strategy for 2021 and beyond, we’re here to help you and your team make every moment matter.

*Source: Laura Ramos, “Not Yet The New Normal: ABM Must Evolve Into Account-Based Engagement,” Caroline Robertson, Steven Casey, Meredith Cain, Jennifer Zhang, Kara Hartig, Forrester.com, March 26, 2021. Available to Forrester subscribers or for purchase.

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