There is a lot of talk about account based sales or marketing – or whatever else you may call it. They’re business buzzwords, but what is it exactly? And how do you win with this trendy concept?
Let’s just call it strategically building pipeline for our purposes. People get lost on how to do this the right way and I’ll be the first to admit there is no silver bullet when it comes to strategically prospecting into your key accounts. But, there are key principles that you should be aware of and follow. With that in mind, here are three key steps to strategic prospecting that will create an advantage over your competitors.
Number one, you need to target your ideal customer profile. In other words, knowing who you should target means both at the account and the contact level.
Number two, you need to leverage digital tech to target your accounts. Today, you have to be doing digital and a lot of it. I realize Google rewards for quality, but you need quantity too. Research studies, blog posts, ebooks, webinars, podcasts, etc. They’re all important and you should be doing all of them, specifically pointed at your target accounts. Once somebody interacts with your digital content, you need to push them into one of your personalized sales plays and you should have three of them assembled.
The first is your strategic event strategy. I know events can be seen as boring and time consuming, but I promise you they are killing it right now because people are sick of industry events. Leaders want small, intimate interactions and you can do that for them.
Next is your 1:1 dream account approach. The organization should rally around the top 100 accounts and it should be a “win at all costs” mentality. Pull out all the stops on this one. You need to personalize the interaction, emails, landing pages, webinars, direct mailers, etc.
Once you get a conversation started, your executive team should be attending the meeting in person. Again, pull out all the stops here and don’t let money get in your way. Also, this needs to be quarterbacked by your account based marketing team, overseen by the sales rep, and supported by the sales development team.
Number three, you have to create personalized plays or your one-to-few approach. This needs to be led by the marketing demand gen team, overseen by the account executive, and supported by sales development. This is your everyday sales development plays, but they should be personalized and creative and should focus on key or target accounts like everything else.
If you keep these three key strategic steps top of mind when targeting accounts, you’ll have a competitive advantage over your competitors and achieve your end goal of closing more of the right deals.