10 Exciting ABM Tools You Need to be Using! - Punch!

10 Exciting ABM Tools You Need to be Using!

As ABM evolves, and more and more companies start to adopt an account-based approach, it’s likely that your marketing tech stack is evolving and growing as well. We use a plethora of tools across our business; some are integral to all of our ABM programmes, others we use to supercharge particularly bespoke campaigns. So whether you want to find some new martech tools to elevate your work, or you’re curious about how we do things at Punch!, here’s our take on the 10 ABM tools you need to be using!

1. Vidyard

Vidyard is a really useful platform; it allows you to create marketing or sales videos instantly with the click of a button. A high level of personalisation is a hallmark of a successful ABM programme. Using Vidyard to record one-to-one personalised video messages for your target buyers is the perfect way to do video messaging at scale.

As an agency that prides itself on video outreach, Vidyard gives Punch! everything we need in order to execute this flawlessly. 

It’s so simple and easy-to-use that once you’ve got your message down, you could achieve Punch! levels of productivity and create over 100 different videos a day, all of which makes Vidyard a no-brainer.

2. Trello

Trello is a collaborative productivity tool. Taking inspiration from the agile approach, Trello uses boards and cards to display tasks, allowing you and your co-workers to update projects seamlessly.

Not only is it great for setting your team tasks, it’s also great for both accountability and visibility, as everyone is clear on what is expected of them, when the work is due by, and who they need to collaborate with in order to achieve their goals.

At Punch!, we use Trello to share documents and drafts with clients, allowing them to see the progress of their ABM programmes whenever they want.

With a simple and appealing dashboard, Trello is a smart pick for project management.

3. Avaza

Avaza is a project management tool. Where we use Trello for client facing project management, we use Avaza internally. Whether it’s scheduling resources, tracking time, or just project management, it covers the lot.

While account-based marketing delivers a greater ROI than other types of marketing, it also requires more investment. Therefore it’s important that you’re able to plan and budget properly, and provide visibility to the board of how and where your budget is being spent.

By tracking the time it takes to carry out the various aspects of an ABM programme, you can allocate resources and schedule the appropriate time for the planning and execution of your campaigns, meaning that costs don’t spiral out of control and you get the best ROI. 

4. Cognism

Account data and insights are key to any successful ABM programme. Described as a turbocharged version of LinkedIn Sales Navigator, data platform Cognism provides up-to-date company and contact data. There are several filters you can apply to segment the data, for instance you can filter by the technology your target companies use. Most importantly, you can use these filters to identify your total addressable market (TAM), based on your ideal customer profile. This data can then be seamlessly imported into your CRM of choice!

Cognism can also be used to identify trigger events, which allows you to come up with a more targeted message. You can enroll contacts in email sequences, receiving different chains of emails depending on which sequence they are in. This is a fantastic tool for ABM, as you can create specific emails for each of your buyer personas, schedule and send at the right time, and automate your sequences meaning you can personalise your outreach at scale.

You can also carry out A/B testing, the results of which, along with the extensive email analytics provided, give you insights into your best performing emails and sequences.

5. Hubspot

A CRM system is the backbone of your company’s marketing and sales function, and at Punch!, we use HubSpot. The choice of a CRM system will mostly come down to personal preference. Salesforce, SAP and a number of other platforms all have their benefits, but we find HubSpot works especially well for ABM programmes.

There’s not much more to say about HubSpot that hasn’t already been said. It’s UI is clean, making for easy navigation, and it offers a high level of customisation.

There are a host of integrations for the platform, meaning that if you want to keep adding tools to your martech stack, there’s a good chance those tools will be able to integrate with HubSpot.

6. Zapier

Zapier is an ABM tool that often goes unnoticed, but its function is pivotal to our programmes.

Zapier moves data between your web applications and tools automatically. This opens up a world of possibilities, lots of which we haven’t tapped into, but our main purpose is for personalisation, taking the information we hold in our CRM system, and accessing that when we reach out to prospects using some of the other tools on this list.

So, if you ever have to transfer data between two different applications, then Zapier is the programme for you.

7. Nexus

If you want to achieve the best return on investment from your marketing spend, you should always be looking to target the ‘lowest hanging fruit’ – that is, the organisations who fit your target profile, and are most likely to buy from you.

But how do you know who those companies are? Yes, you can use a lead-scoring system based on visits to your website, contacts who have opened your emails and other typical lead scoring methodologies, but these all rely on the fact that these companies are already engaging with you in some way. But wouldn’t it be great if you could measure companies’ buying intent, even if they’ve never visited your site or heard from you?

Well, you can. It’s called third-party intent data, and this is where Nexus, one of our favourite ABM tools, comes in.

Cyance’s Nexus platform utilises millions of tracking pixels across the internet to indicate which companies have been looking into the keywords that align with your products and services at each stage of the sales funnel. By combining this data with your ICP (ideal customer profile), Nexus give you the opportunity to reach out to the right accounts at exactly the right time, with a message that they’ll be interested in.

8. Google Analytics

Targeting fewer accounts in a more personalised way, means that the progress you’re making with these accounts is going to be more closely scrutinised by senior management and budget holders.

Being able to gather accurate data on how and when those target accounts are engaging with your digital assets, such as bespoke landing pages or personalised collateral will be key to demonstrating the value of your ABM programmes. It also allows your BDEs and Sales team to make the follow-ups with full knowledge of just how engaged each of the target accounts are.

You don’t need to pay for any expensive software to achieve these insights into how your ABM programmes are performing, Google Analytics will give you everything you need. 

You can even get as specific as setting UTM parameters for each of the individuals you’re reaching out to, allowing to get a complete view of the level of engagement you’ve achieved with every contact at the organisation. 

9. ListenLoop

ListenLoop is an account-based advertising tool that serves digital ads to the devices of individuals at your target accounts. The platform has a substantial database of IP addresses associated with large organisations and enterprises, and can also identify devices belonging to individuals in different business functions, for example, Sales, Marketing, HR or Finance.

This means you can run a digital campaign to deliver ads to those users’ devices, as part of a wider ABM programme.

At Punch!, we love Listenloop as a way to to kick off a programme. By serving prospects targeted ads before they receive any other outreach from you, it warms them up to your proposition in a passive manner, making them feel they’ve come across your company independently and ‘warming them up’ for the outreach that they’re going to receive in the coming weeks.

A fairly cheap option with regards to advertising, Listenloop is a smart selection for those on a tight budget.

10. WordPress

WordPress will be a familiar name to you, I’m sure. As one of the best known content management systems around, it’s a powerful and yet intuitive way to build your website and publish content.

If you’re going to create specific account-based landing pages for your campaigns, your web designer can create a template for you to work with. Then once this is done, WordPress makes it easy to duplicate and customise each landing page, helping you deliver account-specific content to your target buyers at scale.

You can make changes to the landing page such as including each target account’s name, logo, you could even go so far as to include their company goals and how your proposition could help them achieve them. There are so many possibilities.


While these are some of the platforms that we love working with at Punch!, there are plenty of other tools out there that might be a better fit for you and your organisation. But if you have any suggestions or tools you really like, we’d love to hear from you, so let us know in the comments!

THREE TYPES OF ABM.
WHICH IS RIGHT FOR YOU?

One-to-one, one-to-few, one-to-many, programmatic, lite…it’s understandable why account-based marketing can seem daunting at first! But regardless of the ABM terminology being used, the basic principles are the same. Putting more resources into fewer target accounts who are more likely to convert, and provide a greater ROI. Which kind of ABM approach you should adopt depends on a number of factors. In this blog you’ll find out what the 3 types of ABM are, and which is right for your business.

the three types of ABM

So you’ve decided that adopting an ABM strategy is right for your business and that’s definitely a wise choice.

 

It’s understandable that you might have some concerns, running an ABM programme requires a shift of mind-set. It takes sizeable marketing ‘balls’ to shift resources from more typical marketing strategies to account-based marketing.

 

But that’s exactly what organisations are doing – the number of companies with an advanced ABM programme doubled from 2017 to 2018. And why?

 

Simple – because in a recent study, 97% of marketers reported a higher ROI from ABM than other marketing campaigns. Any successful ABM campaign is one that balances these three measures –

 

  • The likelihood of a given target account buying
  • The resources required to acquire them as a customer
  • The potential ROI to your business if they convert

The differences between the 3 types of ABM are driven by a need to align these factors, so let’s look at exactly what each approach involves and what factors should inform your ABM strategy.

One-to-one ABM

The original and probably best known of the 3 types of ABM, and the approach you’re most likely already familiar with.

One-to-one ABM is a strategic approach that treats your most valuable target accounts as their own individual markets. This means engaging with each of them in a specific and bespoke way.

 

A typical one-to-one campaign would involve targeting 5-10 key target accounts, the ones whose business would make your year or even change the direction of your company.

The resources required to engage with each account in a one-to-one ABM campaign are significant. With that in mind, it’s vital that you have deep insight into how likely the target account is to buy. Intent data is a great way to choose your target accounts based on whether they’re starting a buying journey.

 

By focusing on 10 accounts that you know are likely to buy, you can allocate more resources to engaging with each, knowing that they are more likely to convert and provide you with a great ROI.

You should consider one-to-one ABM as your strategy of choice if –

 

  • You can research the accounts in detail and gather detailed insights on how likely they are to buy
  • Your products and solutions are high-value and high-consideration
  • You’re selling into a mature or even saturated market
  • Your opportunity to close rate is high
  • You have clear and genuine points of differentiation from your competitors
  • Each account has a large number of key stakeholders from whom you need buy-in
  • You have the resources available to create content bespoke to each account
  • You have the available people resources to engage and nurture each target account

One-to-few ABM

One-to-few ABM, or ABM Lite as it’s also known, is a way of using the one-to-one ABM principles and applying them at scale to a greater number of target accounts.

For example, you might be dedicating 40 days per month to your top 5 accounts in a one-to-one strategy.

 

If you then wanted to reach out to your top 30 accounts, you most likely wouldn’t be able to scale up the same approach unless you have 240 days worth of resources available to do this. So what’s the answer?

 

Your best strategy would be to focus on small groups of target accounts, rather than individual accounts. These groups can then be treated as their own individual markets, in the same way as individual accounts were with one-to-one ABM.

 

The most common way to organise accounts into groups of 5-10 is by sub-sector. If you’re targeting the retail sector, your sub-sectors might be fashion, groceries, DIY and homeware.

You can then build specific content that will resonate with that sub-sector, identifying trends and solving their challenges.

Consider one-to-few ABM as your strategy of choice if –

 

  • You have a small addressable market of target accounts
  • You’re selling high-value, high consideration solutions or products
  • You have to get buy-in from 3-4 key stakeholders at each account
  • You’re able to gather insights into the challenges facing each target sector
  • You have the resources available to create sector specific content
  • You have the available people resources to engage and nurture each target account
  • Your product or solution has clear points of differentiation from its competition

One-to-many ABM

One-to-many ABM takes the ABM approach and scales it so the principles can be applied to a larger number of target accounts.

 

How many? That’s up to you, as there are no hard and fast rules as to where one-to-few ends and where one-to-many begins.

 

Similarly, you might be wondering where to draw the line between one-to-many ABM and just ‘marketing’? Well you’re not alone, there’s not a clear agreement even among leading practitioners of ABM.

 

It depends on the lifetime value of those accounts to your business, the greater the value, the fewer you should go for.

 

The average number of accounts for a one-to many campaign according to the ITSMA sits at around 100. However you may choose to go for more than this and dedicate fewer resources to each, or use an approach closer to the one-to-few model, and dedicate more resources to engaging with each account.

You should consider one-to-many ABM as a strategy if –

 

  • You want to increase brand awareness whilst also creating engagement at key accounts
  • Your solution is new to market, or the market need educating on its potential
  • There is one or a couple of key stakeholders at each target account
  • You have the available people resources to engage and nurture each target account
  • Your pipeline to close rate is low and could be improved
  • You don’t have access to information on which accounts are starting a buying journey
  • You need some accounts to convert more quickly in order to see ROI sooner

FIVE TIPS FOR ACCOUNT SELECTION

In these times of uncertainty, making the most out of your marketing budget is more important than ever. In Account-Based Marketing you reduce the number of accounts you target significantly and then increase the amount of resources you spend on them. This makes the actual account selection process very important because you can’t afford for an account that receives significant resource to just fall by the wayside. So with that in mind, here a five tips for best practice account selection.

Have you thought about targeting different industries?

People are getting scared and more cautious about taking meetings and calls. So, who is engaging?

 

Some industries are booming at the moment such as:

 

  • Video conferencing technology
  • Project management tools
  • E-learning
  • Ecommerce
  • Gaming

With an influx in demand, they might just be looking for your solution. But for industries heavily effected, you need to rethink your GTM strategy to be as humane as possible; if your solution is something that would be deemed essential to these businesses – keep helping. If it’s more of a luxury, consider targeting different industries where an influx of demand means they might be on the lookout for your solution.

Sales and Marketing, Name a Better Duo

We always talk about the importance of sales and marketing alignment, but it comes into play with regards to account selection as well. A common mistake is allowing one department to select all of the target accounts for a campaign.

 

If the sales team are solely responsible then you run the risk of them giving you all of the ‘problem’ accounts that they have yet to achieve any traction with. As Jamie Hardin, Senior Marketing Manager of ON24 explains “ABM should be viewed as augmenting the current strategy, not a ‘Hail Mary’ initiative on an inactive account.” Similarly, it would be foolish for marketing to be solely responsible without using the information that sales already have on the accounts that they’ve been engaging with.

This could be information on which accounts are reaching a contract renewal date, previous positive conversations with the clients, or even contacts that could have used your services in a previous role at another company.

By combining the information marketing has alongside insights from sales, your account selection can lay the foundation for a successful campaign.

Are you intent on this?

Utilising intent data is the best way to select accounts. This helps you understand which companies are in a buying window based on the websites they’re visiting and the content they’re consuming. However, platforms such as Bombora and Nexus aren’t at everyone’s disposal, which is why a combination of the above tactics gives the next best chance of selecting accounts that are most likely to convert.

 

Account selection is perhaps the biggest factor in the success of an Account-Based Marketing campaign. Good accounts, that fit your ICP and are showing intent are bound to be successful, whereas accounts that aren’t selected on insight and reasoning are likely to fail. There’s never a sure fire way to pick accounts that are destined to convert, but by following these tips you’ll have a solid foundation for your ABM programme.

Do it early!

One of the most consistent mistakes we come across with account selection is doing it too late in the ABM journey. After first defining your ideal customer profile or ICP (link to other blog) and selecting your sector, you should be looking to choose your accounts. Prioritising selection early on in the process will give you ample time to gather insight into them, allowing you to really personalise your message that will resonate with the target DMU.

Make Sure They Fit Your ICP

Using an ICP to frame your account selection ensures that your target accounts are most likely to be a good fit for your business. It also ensures that you don’t fall for those ‘dream’ accounts that you may have put on the list because you want the logo on your website, or you’ve always dreamed of working with. If they aren’t right for the programme, you shouldn’t be targeting them. It’s not about if you want them, as much as it’s about if they want you.

So, you’re thinking about adopting Account-Based Marketing…

Fantastic! But there are three different types of ABM; one-to-many, one-to-few, and one-to-one. So, which one is right for you? Luckily, we have a handy little calculator that will tell you exactly that.