Account Based Marketing 101


This post will not go over the definition of ABM; this is more on how to get started with five simple steps.

But in case you need a refresh, account-based marketing (ABM), also known as critical account marketing, is a strategic approach to business marketing in which an organization considers and communicates with individual prospects or customer accounts as markets of one.

Account-based marketing is mainly used in larger enterprise-level sales organizations, but this doesn’t mean you can’t leverage these tactics for your brand or small business. This framework or campaign structure will help you be hyper-focused on your paid campaigns.


ABM mainly contains three main sections or flows (or departments). Each department will include its own goals and tasks and may or may not match up with all departments or areas.

  1. Management
  2. Engagement
  3. Measurement

Those main sections break out into five steps you'll need to do. These will be the building blocks of your campaign structure.

Step 1. Identify Accounts

Step 2. Profile Accounts

Step 3. Create Content

Step 4. Launch Campaigns

Step 5. Measure and Analyze

Step 1 on account identification considerations, below are bullets on what to consider when scoping accounts.

  1. Look for High Yield – Rated below investment grade at the time of purchase.
  2. Ensure prospects are a good product fit – Being in a good market with a product that can satisfy that market.
  3. Your competitor’s ‘customers’ – Similar industry which offers a similar product or service.
  4. Review the strategic importance – Evaluate how vital a particular part of the plan is.

Account Identification Tools

Leveraging tools will help streamline your workflow but make sure you spend time and resources on the right tools for the job.

Account Data

  • LinkedIn
  • InsideView
  • Hoovers
  • Dun & Bradstreet
  • ReachForce

Account Scoring

  • Leadspace
  • Lattice

Niche Solutions

  • BuiltWith
  • Dataanyze

Decision Maker Strategy Example

  1. Drive awareness – social, website, SEM, blogs, PR
  2. Engage – Field marketing events; onsite, virutal, or ondemand.
  3. Email program – keep traditional email marketing for opt-ins and nurtures.
  4. Connect – follow-up with calls or one-to-one communications via e-mail, LinkedIn, In-Mail, etc.

Influencer Strategy Example

  1. Drive awareness – targeted display or account-based marketing
  2. Engage – Direct mail campaigns.
  3. Email program – Ongoing email campaigns but nurturing identified MQLs / SQLs while in the funnel.
  4. Connect – Follow up with those who engage with current offerings or events.

Multi-Channel Marketing Campaigns

  1. Use the channel that works for the objective.
  2. Take a systematic approach.
  3. Coordinate your story across channels.
  4. Work closely with sales.