Prepare your Business for Success
When we sign up clients who are brand new to ABM, part of our role is in preparing them for the complexities of this new approach. This often involves helping an organisation understand the resources, budget, time, and sustained effort they’ll need to invest to get the best results from their ABM campaigns, as well as demonstrating the value of ABM and the collaborative approach required across sales and marketing teams.
We often recommend that companies lay the foundations of ABM by running a pilot scheme, allowing them to learn important lessons through practical application, establish best-practices, and gain vital skills before implementing costlier and lengthier campaigns.
A pilot scheme can also be a foot in the door with key conquests, helping to establish start building trust with the right people, and putting the pathways in place along with bigger campaigns will run more smoothly.
Unconvinced? Here are our top five benefits to running an ABM pilot scheme for your organisation.
Understanding How ABM Works
If you’ve never tried the ABM approach before, chances are this complex but highly successful new marketing approach will come as a culture shock for you and your staff.
As a test run, your pilot programme will take the pressure off and allow you to become more familiar with how ABM works, focusing on one or a few small target accounts and allowing you to practice activities and techniques in a controlled way, on a small scale.
Implementing and managing a campaign when the stakes are relatively low will also help you to measure potential successes and pitfalls before investing larger amounts of time, money and resources in future campaigns.
If you’re new to the ABM approach, it can be difficult to set realistic goals for your first few campaigns, rendering it equally difficult to measure their success.
By testing the activities required through a small pilot scheme, you can obtain greater clarity regarding what can be achieved with campaigns on a much larger scale, thus identifying the goals you want to map out when your ABM activities begin in earnest.
Examining and understanding the results of your pilot campaign will also help you to devise a strategy for future ABM approaches that’s in line with both internal expectations and expected outcomes in the real world.
Get Everyone on Board with a New Approach
Before investing your company’s resources in a full-blown ABM campaign, it’s sensible to demonstrate to your stakeholders and staff that you can run a successful pilot scheme, in order to get everyone on-board with your new marketing approach (and to begin to demonstrate the joys of a more focused technique with potential for more powerful returns, if practiced with care and commitment).
As we’ve highlighted in several posts, the alignment of sales and marketing teams for successful ABM campaigns is vital, and securing this balance should be an integral part of your pilot scheme, to give your future campaigns the support they need to meet their targets.
Secure the Right Strategy
Rather than diving straight into a high-stakes, wide reaching ABM campaign, a pilot scheme will allow you to test the way you approach and manage ABM across your organisation. Learning on the job, at a small scale, will also enable your processes for optimal results when full-blown campaigns are given the green light.
Every aspect of the ABM approach can be tested through a pilot campaign, from whether content is focussed enough to whether your organisation is gathering enough insight to build detailed buyer personas in order to personalise approaches.
Viewing your pilot as a learning opportunity rather than a pass / fail exercise is the right attitude to take with a challenging new approach that takes time and experience to master.
Gather your Resources and Sharpen your Insights
Successful ABM campaigns require resources and content, and your pilot campaign provides the perfect opportunity to begin gathering both.
Through a small scale campaign, your organisation can develop, hone, and increase the resources needed for ABM to run smoothly, and can begin to identify, build and refine the content required to implement impactful ABM campaigns on a larger scale.
For optimal ABM success, a pilot is vital to trial both processes and techniques, allowing you to understand your results, set realistic goals, focus your efforts and demonstrate the value of this amazing approach to your entire organisation, to achieve the buy in needed for future campaigns.