Social media marketing remains a mysterious challenge for many businesses. The vagaries of social media algorithms, growing concerns over personal data privacy and ceaseless demand for engaging content can paralyze corporate officials and even marketing professionals.
An overabundance of opinions and advice doesn’t help.
Part of the allure of social media marketing is reaching a lot of people with relative ease and engaging with a fraction of them. However, carpet-bombing on social media isn’t really as efficient as it seems. Even with well-considered targeting, you may not zero in on the customers or clients ready to engage with you and respond to a call to action.
One solution to this conundrum is concentrating marketing efforts on the most promising customers and clients. This is called account-based marketing or ABM.
ABM is all about customizing marketing outreach to potential customers or clients. That can be as general as targeted ads or blogs or individualized website experiences and personalized videos. Outreach can occur both online and offline.
This approach works best for businesses and brands with solidly researched buyer personas or highly desirable dream accounts. That way, you are reaching out to people already identified as interested or potentially interested in what you offer.
Well-done buyer personas include keys to engagement such as what information they seek and view as useful, what channels they frequent and who they trust. This can inform a personalized marketing package with content tailored to high-interest targets.
ABM declutters marketing and demystifies social media marketing, which the CEO should like. You identify targets and go after them specifically and directly. It is a perfect way to merge marketing and sales. Marketing to individual personalities or interests will immunize marketing from trends and the latest “big thing.” You learn by actual success of what works and what doesn’t.
The biggest advantage offered by ABM is avoiding a lot of wasted effort that often produces subpar returns on marketing investments. ABM is an electronic version of door-to-door sales, where curiosity, innovation and pluck are rewarded.
ABM removes the wizard-from-behind-the-curtain mystery of how social media marketing works and requires more of an all-hands-on-deck approach to identifying targets, sharpening buyer personas and focusing on how to cultivate one-on-one relationships. Dealing up-close-and-personal with a few targets can generate more actionable learning for your organization than just relying on statistical data or a social media guru.
In marketing parlance, ABM is tantamount to playing the long game as opposed to the quick hit. You invest to reach the most promising or most desirable customers. You sacrifice wider reach to concentrate on building rapport and a relationship with a few good prospects. You commit to customize content based on customer interest and spare yourself the time-consuming guesswork of finding subjects and treatments that appeal to a broader audience. You focus on sales conversions rather than SEO or clicks.
No marketing approach works for everybody. But if you are frustrated with social media marketing and eager for more hands-on engagement with customers, account-based marketing might be right for your business.