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About This Episode
Your clients are basically in 1 of 3 situations right now.
Devastated, paused, or thriving.
Over half are paused… but they don’t have to be.
“There is a lot of uncertainty, and the only way to create community is through collaboration and trying to see how we can move accounts,” he said.
Well, how can we move some of those paused accounts to thriving?
Eric’s answer: Personal ABM.
Personal account-based sales & marketing
Plenty of companies have gotten into account-based marketing or account-based sales.
But have they really?
“In many cases, it’s simply account-based awareness or account-based advertising. The sales and marketing is missing the personal relevance,” Eric said.
Sprinkling in a bit of industry relevance or company relevance isn’t actually personalizing your ABM.
“Content isn’t speaking to the decision makers, especially those that are stuck, those that are paused.”
Account-based advertising works with the 3% of the market that’s already pretty open.
“We’re missing the 60% of the market that thinks they don’t need a solution,” Eric said. “That is where the personalized content, personalized messaging, and personal impacts lie.”
Only when you understand and recognize the individual needs and how those are impacting their business will they start to open up.
What personal ABM looks like
“Personal ABM is having more of a one-on-one conversation within the accounts you want,” he explained.
Don’t do this: You see a notification that it’s one month until renewal, so you call up with some new features.
Do this: Proactively learn about the gaps and challenges, then create content that actually helps out.
The content you create should take this approach:
- Here’s what was happening before we came in.
- Here’s what we’re seeing now.
- So here’s where we need to move.
Overcome the disconnect between customer success teams and sales that waltz in around renewal time by showing you understand their needs.
“I need to destroy that distance and really become personal with them, especially those accounts that I could expand,” Eric said.
In other words, you set yourself apart through personal connection.
“If you don’t show that you understand where the priorities lie and what’s important to them, there’s that distance. Then you’re just like any other vendor,” Eric said.
Tips for personalization
If you think you’re already personalizing your content, you probably aren’t.
Throwing out a few connections and then launching right into your sales pitch isn’t personalization.
Personalization talks about gaps and impacts.
It isn’t just a trite observation of “Oh, hey, you’re connected to this other company, too.”
Personalization is one-on-one.
Especially during the pandemic, you can’t put a tiny bit of empathy in your hook… and then launch into your sales pitch.
You have to show you’re talking to just the one influencer. No one else.
Personalization is the entire message.
“I need that whole email to speak to them,” Eric said. People will tune out as soon as you switch to generic communications. You’ll lose trust.
Personalization focuses on what they’re thinking about.
If your touches are about your messaging, your content, then you aren’t speaking their language and showing you understand their needs.
“Any content you’re providing is a mini sales conversation. I want to have that conversation in that prospect’s mind,” Eric said.
Scaling the personal ABM approach
The first step to scaling the personal ABM approach is to focus on existing customers that are unresponsive.
“There’s a lot of revenue growth out there… if only they saw your value,” Eric said. “I had clients that won $2 million deals because they changed their communications because they had content for them.”
Eric suggested focusing on 5 to 10 specific accounts. Create content and stories for them. Go all in.
“You can learn a lot. You’re going to be able to see patterns, and you’ll be able to apply it to very similar companies,” he said.
Once you’ve brought several inactive accounts back to success, you can start to scale the one-to-one out to one-to-few.
Don’t ever leave one-to-one behind, though.
“You’re going to have very specific content for accounts that you can’t move because they require that heavy personalization. They’re the ones that are going to give you the greatest revenue growth,” Eric said.
The way to use your one-to-one approach for the many is to share it on blogs, videos, LinkedIn, and other platforms like those.
“Once you start thinking of clients as a strategic partner and you shift the communications, all of a sudden the margins increase, they see more value. They see you in a different light,” he said.
Eric’s 3 takeaways
- Look at the content you’re sharing on LinkedIn. How can you speak to the very specific accounts that you want?
- Go beyond the company and get personal. Be relevant to the individual decision makers themselves.
- Now’s the time to make the shift because so many companies are paused.
“Now it’s time for building the connections. How can I build a strong, personal relationship with them, support them, and give them actions they need?” Eric said.
Check out Stop the Sales Drop for more collaborative marketing intelligence ideas.