In my previous company sales people would be given 30 accounts and we all know that they could only manage 5. Which left 25 accounts fallow. Or put another way, that’s 25 accounts that your competition can run around in and build a nice little base up.
Of course, if you ever said to the sales people you can only have 5 accounts there was uproar, they wanted to make sure they covered their bases, you never know a “bluebird” deal can land.
Until we had a strong leader. While the orders came down from the US parent that sales people would have 30 accounts this year, 25 accounts next year, reducing each year until 5. Our strong leader said, no we go straight to 5 accounts.
And there by luck and maybe some judgement an Account Based Marketing, well you could call it Account Based Selling, or Account Based Customer Service. Hence the term Account Based Everything (ABE) where as everything in your business is based around focused accounts.
Why Is This a Good Idea?
We talk to a lot of Marketing departments where they create “a lot” of content. This usually means, at the most, one piece of content a week. If you think about the number of verticals that a company has to cover, that content is often bland and does not have the vertical specifics that a decision maker in an account needs.
If I’m a decision maker in Life Sciences I want insight and leadership but not Insight into how a Media company works, unless you are saying there is cross market best practice. That is still vertically aligned.
With only 5 accounts, salespeople start to walk the corridors and uncover business issues they have never faced before, some of those you will be able to “sell” and some you will not. This means that salespeople and pre-sales people need to be equipped with better qualification skills. I’m not saying that your sales people cannot qualify, but salespeople need to understand that when they go “bear hunting” not everything they “bring back to the camp, can be killed”. Sales people need, therefore to be equipped that they don’t waste their’s or the companies time.
Marketing also need to get more focused, there are now only a few accounts to create content for, so it can be less generic. In fact the whole point of Account Based Everything is that you are creating content just for account.
Sounds Like You Need a Road Map?
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The book is written as a workbook, not as a “why” which tells you why you should do it, but never tells you how. It is written as a how:-
- How to get buy-in with your organisation.
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- Some tools that you might find useful.
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