Do you need to focus your sales and marketing efforts on only the top accounts and industries to drive more revenue for your IoT company?
Account based marketing is arguably the most effective sales and marketing strategy for B2B companies that needs to build an accelerated pipeline of high-value deals, get buy-in from multiple decision makers and increase win rates and deal sizes.
Read on to learn more about why your IoT company should implement a account based marketing in 2020.
Account based marketing helps you target a few large, key accounts or industries
IoT is a technology that can be applied to many different fields, and is usually categorised into Consumer IoT, industrial IoT, Healthcare IoT and Governmental IoT.
This makes account based marketing an ideal strategy for acquiring new customers for IoT companies, as it helps you to target either a few large key accounts, or accounts in a specific industry.
With account based marketing, you are laser focused on a specific list of accounts or an industry. This will make it easier for your business to unlock the full potential of each target account, and help you double or triple your client base.
If your current strategy is not performing, you’re not getting the volume of leads you need, and sales is complaining about the quality of their leads, maybe it is time for account based marketing instead?
According to Engagio, you can use a tiered approach to to account based marketing, segmenting accounts into different tiers based on their revenue potential.
If you are only targeting a few high-value accounts with a high revenue potential, treating each account as a market of one would make sense.
You could also use the "ABM Lite" approach where you are targeting a few hundred accounts, where you for example create custom for one specific industry, or customising a white paper with the target accounts logo on it.
Alternatively, you could use a ABM-Demand generation hybrid where you want to target a few thousand accounts using very targeted advertising, events or inbound marketing campaigns. This big difference from most demand generation strategies is that you do not score leads, but marketing qualified accounts (MQAs).
Whatever approach that is the best for your IoT company, an account based marketing strategy will help you to reach the right fit buyers in multiple channels at the scale you need.
Account based marketing makes it easier for an organisation to buy from you
According to Gartner, the typical buying group for a complex B2B solution involves six to 10 decision makers. Each of these decision-makers are usually “armed” with four or five pieces of information they’ve gathered independently through online research.
As more decision-makers doing research is involved, combined with having many different options available, it is harder than ever for prospective buyers to actually reach a buying decision.
The solutions to this is to create and share content that helps buyers complete different jobs in their buying process:
- Problem identification. “We need to do something.”
- Solution exploration. “What’s out there to solve our problem?”
- Requirements building. “What exactly do we need the purchase to do?”
- Supplier selection. “Does this do what we want it to do?”
- Validation. “We think we know the right answer, but we need to be sure.”
- Consensus creation. “We need to get everyone on board
The B2B buying process is not linear, and buyers will “loop” between these different jobs, or they can happen at the same time.
Your job as a provider of an IoT solution is to provide information that makes buying easier to navigate the buying process.
Research from Gartner shows that “customers who perceived the information they received from suppliers to be helpful in advancing across their buying jobs were 2.8 times more likely to experience a high degree of purchase ease, and three times more likely to buy a bigger deal with less regret.”
Gartner calls this Buyer Enablement, and is perfectly aligned with account based marketing. You do not have to wait for a qualified lead to come to you. Sales reps can be a channel to prospective customers, who reaches out to give prescriptive advice.
Account based marketing helps you convey the business value of the Internet of Things (IoT)
IoT is a hot topic these days. Like every new technology or idea, it can be a big challenge to communicate the business value of it to decision-makers.
In large and complex B2B deals it is not only about getting one single person to sign on the dotted line. There are multiple ways each role and department can benefit from IoT, and you need buy-in from the whole organisation to close the deal.
Account based marketing is the best solution to this challenge. This strategy helps you to pursue large companies with multiple decision makers and departments, and tailor your message to each individual.
With account based marketing, you will have a quality over quantity approach where you proactively reach out the the right fit prospects and companies that can benefit the most from your IoT solutions.
By targeting different buying roles, you can use different types of content to target different paint points of each role, and explain how IoT will alleviate this pain before they become a blocker in the sales process.
You can create anything from videos, articles, white papers, interactive tools and then educate and nurture each of the decision makers at once.
Think about business value IoT can bring to a business:
- New service offerings and revenue streams.
- Fewer human errors by automating routine tasks
- Improve communication between different devices (M2M), resulting in fewer inefficiencies and better quality.
- Make more devices voice-enabled, removing the need for screens
- Improved monitoring of different business processes so that productivity and efficiency is increased.
- Improved predictive analysis by gathering large amounts of data from different sources to identify patterns.
- Tagging equipment that helps with collecting location and sensory information from physical world devices.
- Easily pass relevant information to digital applications and environments.
These are just some of the example of the business value can bring. By mapping these to each buying role and department, you can easily address every goal, challenge and concern they have, making it easier to get buy-in from the whole organisation.
Account based marketing gives you a clear path to ROI and prevents you from wasting your budget
For the last 10 years, strategies like inbound marketing, content marketing and other “pull” strategies have focused on generating as many leads as possible for B2B companies.
The basic principle was that if you fill your top of funnel with quality traffic, convert on an offer and become a marketing qualified lead (MQL), then be nurtured and educated so that they end up as a sales-qualified lead that is passed to sales.
According to Forrester, only 0.75% of inbound leads actually converts into closed revenue. Needless to say, big parts of marketing budgets are wasted.
What often happens with inbound marketing is that a single person has a need and start their research online. However, while this person might have a want or need, they often not have the budget or authority to to make a purchase decision.
This is one of the big problems account based marketing is out to fix for B2B companies not getting results from their marketing.
According to Joe Chernov of Pendio, account based marketing aspires to be a zero-waste sales & marketing strategy. What makes ABM different is that it only focuses on the right fit accounts that are likely to buy from your company.
With ABM, you stop chasing down low quality leads, and instead work on expanding and engaging contacts in the same organization. As mentioned earlier in this post, the different departments and roles will require different content and messaging, making your company and solution seem more relevant to prospective buyers.
In this way, account based marketing helps you focus on those accounts that will make you the most revenue and profit, and optimize for your two most valuable resources; time and money.
By implementing an account based marketing strategy for your IoT company, your sales and marketing will be able to reach multiple decision makers in high-value accounts.
By implementing this strategy, you will be able to build your organisation’s reputation, build long lasting relationships with prospects, align your team and win more deals.
Nettly are experts in customer acquisition for industry 4.0 companies. We work with IoT companies that are shaping the future to improve client acquisition, grow their pipeline, acquire more customers, and navigate long sales cycles.