What defines a great account-based marketing campaign?
👆There are a lot of ways to answer that question.
But there’s one rule of thumb – or Drift leadership principle – I always go back to:
“Put the customer at the center of everything you do.”
Great account-based marketing (ABM) campaigns accomplish the same thing.
Meaning ABM campaigns should be:
- Considerate of the buyer’s journey
- Actionable and valuable to the buyer
- A seamless experience from start to finish
To show what this looks like in practice, I’m sharing three ABM campaigns we’ve run at Drift, plus the steps you can take to run similar plays.
ABM & Custom Landing Pages
As more companies double down on digital marketing to drive pipeline, marketers must innovate to keep campaigns from getting stale and lost in all the noise. This is especially true when it comes to ABM.
ABM is all about creating “wow” moments for dream accounts. Custom landing pages are a great way to do just that and take ABM personalization to the next level.
In a bit of a meta play, we ran a campaign using a custom landing page and bot. This campaign emphasized how important a target account’s website is to their bottom line – and questioned why they continued to use antiquated forms as part of their marketing strategy 👇
Before we dive in, here’s a roadmap of the complete campaign journey:
We began by making a list of the target accounts and their forms. Once we had our who, we built the custom page. After that, we sent the first touch email. This email was personalized with a CTA to the custom landing page.
If the first email failed to convert, we had our SDRs or AEs send a follow-up email that included a picture of the target account’s form and a CTA to the custom landing page.
Once the buyer lands on the page, they see their company’s name, form, and a custom bot. As you scroll further down, there’s additional research and data points to support that website friction greatly impacts a business’ bottom line.
If the visitor ends up clicking the bot or landing page CTA, they will be directed to book a meeting with sales.
If they don’t book a meeting, two different follow-up responses are sent based on the visitor’s actions:
- If the visitor abandoned the page without engaging with the bot.
- If the visitor was engaged but didn’t book a meeting.
What made this campaign special was our ability to showcase the forms of target accounts and build a strong business case for a better path forward. It created the perfect conversation starter for introducing Conversational Marketing and Revenue Acceleration.
Want more insight into personalized landing pages? Drift’s Head of ABM, Meghan Flannery, hosted a webinar with Demandbase where they walked through even more examples. Access the full recording here.
ABM & Direct Mail
Direct mail is a well-known ABM campaign strategy for engaging with target accounts.
Of course, a shift to WFH has made direct mail campaigns more challenging. (Though, as I discussed with Jason Yarborough from PFL, digital and physical gifting are still very much possible in a WFH world.)
That said, direct mail is still a good ABM play. Particularly if other engagement methods are coming up short.
One direct mail offer we ran in late 2019 through early 2020 was a postcard campaign. This campaign was part of a larger marketing initiative we called #NoForms. Similar to the custom landing page, the purpose was to introduce Conversational Marketing as an alternative to antiquated forms. The form on the postcard was dynamically pulled and mimicked the recipient’s own website form.
For this campaign, we shipped a postcard offering a free print copy of our Conversational Marketing book.
Here’s a roadmap of the full campaign journey:
The postcard included a custom URL. On that landing page, recipients could request a copy of the book and learn more about Conversational Marketing. This page also included a dedicated Driftbot that greeted them by name 👇
Looking for more direct mail inspiration? Drift hosted a webinar with PFL, a leader in tactile and direct mail marketing. You can access the webinar recording on Drift Insider.
ABM & Virtual Events
Events are an ideal play for ABM because they are a natural and intimate way to connect with key decision-makers.
We had to do our own pivot at Drift when it came to events. The result was RevGrowth. At first a standalone event, RevGrowth soon became a topical, virtual event series.
The OG RevGrowth Summit had more than 8,500 registrants – and was planned in less than six weeks 😱 You can read RevGrowth’s full origin story from the amazing event director who made it happen here.
A lot of factors contributed to RevGrowth’s success. But two key steps played a big part: our ability to engage and invite target ABM accounts and our streamlined registration process.
Here’s a roadmap of this campaign in action 👇
Similar to Drift’s webinar registration process, we use Driftbot playbooks to capture event registrations. We’ve found that switching from forms to bots has increased conversions by as much as 10%.
Once someone landed on the RevGrowth page from a targeted ad or personalized email, they were shown our registration playbook. This bot uses a reverse IP to greet target accounts by name.
If someone from a target account abandoned the page, we used retargeting to entice them to register. To do this, we used both retargeting ads 👇
…And retargeting bots, so return visitors are greeted and directed to continue registering for the event. When a target account lands on the site, our AEs are immediately notified, making it even easier for them to reach out and engage.
Running an event is not for the faint of heart. That’s why we called on our Director of Events and VP of Content & Community to share what it takes to run a great virtual event. Check out their best practices on Drift Insider.
ABM is all about putting the customer at the center of everything you do and making them the star. I hope these campaign examples inspire you to do just that and get creative this year with your ABM.
Here are three more best practices I’ll leave you with:
- Digital is king, but keep leveling up: It’s rare to find an ABM campaign without a digital component. That means name tokens and digital parlor tricks won’t cut it anymore. Start incorporating more decision-makers into your creatives. Look at ways to use technologies to not just impress, but enable action during a campaign.
- The more convenient, the better: Minimizing the number of touchpoints your buyer needs to jump through is critical. Make CTAs accessible. Make follow up as real-time as possible.
- ABM without personalization is like peanut butter without jelly: What really sets ABM apart is personalization. Segment your target accounts and identify the level of personalization you’re willing to invest in.