Connecting the Last Mile: Measuring ABM Campaigns with Closed-Loop Feedback

April 28, 2016

You’ve hit your stride in targeting the right accounts and closing high-quality deals, but your job isn’t done yet. Reflecting on how far your campaign has come can help you to not only celebrate your successes, but also to identify and explore whitespace.

The methods and metrics used to track account based marketing (ABM) campaign success are somewhat far-removed from the traditional marketing metrics, though. The fruitfulness of an ABM campaign depends much more heavily on closed-loop feedback between the sales and marketing departments, and since this new normal will take some getting used to, we want to offer some words of wisdom for really visualizing your results.

1. Monitoring your Sales Cycle Length

In our recent post about the importance of aligning your sales and marketing departments, we touched on the fact that a huge benefit of a closed-loop feedback system between the two departments is a shortened sales cycle. This benefit is actually relevant here because it serves as a great yardstick for how successful your campaign has been. To be clear, ABM is not a practice in speed – don’t expect to be closing deals as quickly as you can snap your fingers – but it is a practice in refinement. If sales and marketing are communicating effectively, deals will close more efficiently, which will be a mirror of your campaign’s success.

2. Benchmarking your Revenue

A big part of the appeal and the payoff of ABM is that the leads you pursue are higher-quality, and therefore, so are the deals that you close. When you begin a relationship with a prospect that is a great fit for your company and vice versa, they’re likely to convert at a higher value.. Also, because you’re practicing precision in lead targeting, a higher percentage of prospects will turn into sales than in traditional marketing. At the end of the day, these factors culminate in more revenue.

As mentioned above, ABM isn’t a practice in speed, and the process of increasing revenue is a slow-burning one. Though your revenue may be growing consistently, that growth can feel imperceptible on a day-to-day basis. Regularly benchmarking your revenue and sharing those numbers in sales-marketing communications helps each department to visualize the direct impact of their ABM efforts to not only provide a line graph of how far the company has come, but to also draw conclusions about what drove the biggest moments of success.

3. Client Retention and Relationship Nurturing

Another measurement for success in ABM is the simple snapshot of your relationships with each client. Making sales with new clients is not the only way to boost revenue; pre-existing clients also contribute to sales growth when they develop a level of trust with your company. If you keep a client happy for a long period of time, they’ll be more likely to expand their contract as their company grows or try out that new product you’re testing. You can even use long-term relationships as an opportunity to identify and tap into market whitespace or network to find other potential leads. So, if you’re documenting high levels of client retention and long-term contracts, and consistently get good customer feedback, it’s a good sign that you’re successfully executing your ABM campaign. Keeping an ear to the ground on client relationships is another really important reason that sales and marketing need to be in a transparent, information-sharing relationship.

The “last mile” of your ABM campaign is simply a period of reflection – looking at the big picture to understand where you currently stand and how you got there. That being said, if you’re using the same metrics for success that you’d use in a traditional marketing campaign, you might be selling yourself short. ABM successes are more broad and abstract, which is why it’s key for sales and marketing to communicate all of their data and figures with one another. Doing regular assessment of these metrics, in the end, means that both red flags and new opportunities can be immediately recognized and handled. To see how your current ABM strategy stacks up.

TOPICS: Blog | Resources
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