COVID-19 has forced marketing teams to shrink their martech and marketing ops budgets. During such challenging times, we can learn from recent ABM Tactics for Retail
We have covered the Account Based Marketing concepts extensively in the past. And, knowing its delicate role in Lead Gen Marketing and Sales Acceleration operations, ABM remains a hot topic discussed by MarTech leaders around the world. Even the customers from emerging markets have begun to pick ABM tools and practices to not just target larger accounts but also deliver highly contextual and personalized marketing through the entire customer experience management cycle.
Terminus bought out Ramble a few weeks ago. That was a big piece of news. Then, Demandbase acquired Engagio. ABM’s evolution is understated by all standards.
During the challenging times like we are facing today, understanding ABM concepts for retail can directly impact the ROI from your existing lead gen and omnichannel customer experience management platforms.
A good publisher will serve highly-contextual ABM content that will help you connect with customers facing the complex retail challenges.
The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly accelerated digital transformation, forcing brands to embrace virtual alternatives.
With customer behavior constantly changing, being able to observe and understand customer data has become even more vital.
A great way to evaluate the role of ABM practices during the COVID-19 is to highlight the recent ABM developments we featured at MarTech Series.
In a recent Interview, Abhishek Deshmukh, VP of Engineering & MD at Zendesk said –
“One of the biggest inhibitors to a service-first approach during the COVID-19 pandemic is to create empathetic and authentic connections amid increasingly distributed customer support teams.”
ABM is a king of all Marketing tactics to take you through the COVID-19 upheaval especially if you are in the retail sector.
Here are the top ABM practices targeting the retail that you should train your eyes on.
#1 Conversational Marketing and Chat
Conversational ABM is a high traction campaign builder for any retail commerce business. At times when retail companies are putting convenience and service ahead of experience, ABM tactics are featuring more of chat and conversational marketing tools. For example, Drift recently launched its ABM-centric Revenue Acceleration category to complement its existing Conversational Marketing offerings.
We expect more developments in DTC branding tactics built on the solid foundation for retail ABM. Marketers would find it easy to host automated targeting campaigns using Chat, SMS, AI Assistants, Video, Social media, Email and now- even podcasts.
By bringing together the various tools and platforms into a single holistic Conversational Marketing product, Drift Revenue Acceleration Platform enables every retail marketer to connect with high-value accounts and retain customers to grow revenue and build a sizeable pipeline for the future.
David Cancel, founder and CEO of Drift says –“We have a vision of a world where people are free to have a conversation with any business, at any time, on their terms…. We thought what we were doing was helping marketers drive more leads, but what we found is that when companies adopted Conversational Marketing, it wasn’t just about marketing. In fact, what it was doing was unifying sales and marketing and directly impacting revenue. And, not just revenue from new business, but also revenue across the entire customer lifecycle.”
#2 Rethink Events and Live Webinars with ABM Tactics for Retail
Rewind to 1 January 2020 — for the most part of the year, a prolific CMO’s calendar would be blocked by one specific activity– attending events, and designing their own event-based marketing tactics. Every CMO and Sales leader that we have interviewed at the MarTech Interview Series have expressed the invaluable data and insights they gather from creating, attending and executing events at various scales.
With lockdown and social distancing norms in place, we don’t see any future for physical B2B events, even as a majority of them stand canceled or advanced to next year.
In the initial days and weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic, we were beginning to see a swift transition of Events and webinars from physical networking to digital, hybridized interactions. Driving event registrations to webinars, podcasts, and live video chats are part of the amazing ecosystem developing with ABM-centric tactics.
A great news for all ABM teams– webinars, video chats and other digital event formats are here to stay. If done right with the ABM goals in place, these are the easiest and most tenable means to turn your audience into customers.
All you need are:
- A great event idea
- Audience to target
- Marketing and Sales goals
- Webinar Pre-event, During and Post event / follow up plan
Pro tip: Get as many sales reps to attend the event — they are the best audience.
#3 Analytics on Demand to Drive ABM Tactics for Retail
During the COVID-19, B2B marketers are leveraging “Voice of Customer” tools to understand where they can interact better and what kind of sentiments they have toward the brand and services.
It is the ABM-backed development that has encouraged digital customer feedback collection companies to explore new ways to collect, analyze and visualize survey analytics, business scans, trend reporting, and demand pattern change insights across retail and DTC brands.
“Today’s enterprise contact centers require robust visibility into cross-channel customer behavior,” said Tim Myers, Vice President Strategic Alliances at Pointillist.
Tim added, “We are excited to bring our technology to Genesys customers and provide these organizations with an even greater ability to visualize high-priority customer journeys, monitor and measure actionable metrics and KPIs, and continuously deliver value to their business and their customers.”
Combined with advanced analytics, business intelligence and data engineering, Martech companies have a solid chance in continuing their Pre COVID-19 audience acquisition and revenue generation goals.
In short, ABM powered by advanced analytics modeling and revenue re-engineering is firmly poised to lead the revenue acceleration / sales retention goals in the COVID-19 period.
#4 Get your App
When Apple decided to partner with Zendesk for its Apple Business Chat, I knew the B2B commerce space is heading to a new destination. It’s not that the app’s integrations are anything new to the martech space; but the timing of it is what makes it so innovative. The way Zendesk Support now manages the Apple Business Chat, allowing companies to have real-time customer conversations via Apple Messages directly is a wonderful benchmark.
The ecosystem of apps and integrations can expand your marketing horizon. When customers are willing to interact with agents using apps and chats, it’s a relevant technology to invest during the COVID-19 pandemic. Uberflip set the ball rolling by launching its Uberflip Marketplace dedicated to helping marketers connect Cloud-based content marketing solutions with their martech stack to seamlessly orchestrate the buyer journey.
For AMB-centric goals, the app could focus on the top martech categories to build engagements and measure CX outcomes.
An ABM-focused martech app should focus on these:
- Self-service Dashboards
- API Integrations
- Smart Chatbots / Virtual Assistants
- Voice and Messaging
Warren Levitan, SVP and GM Platform, Zendesk said – “Apple Business Chat is bringing the power of conversations on Messages to businesses – especially when they need it most. For Zendesk customers, this opens another channel for them to communicate with customers in the way that feels easiest and most convenient to them. We’re excited that more customers can now harness the power of modern messaging to build digitally transformative customer experiences on any Apple device.”
#5 Partner with a Great Content Publisher
Getting your latest piece of news published with a prominent 100k+ audience site is the perfect “dessert” rounding off your ABM goals during the COVID-19. Relevant, fast-paced and customized ABM content publishing and marketing opportunities are top benchmarks of any high-quality martech publication.
A great content publisher can boost your ABM goals by getting you closer to the relevant audience base, speaking to your target accounts directly through high-quality customized Q+A / Interviews, Insights, and Articles.
Whether you are launching a new product, making a staff hiring news, expanding to a new market, raising investment or partnering with a key player in the company, getting your voice in time is what holds the key to great content collaboration with a top martech publisher.
Bonus: Lend a Helping Hand to Customers and Others
ABM not only helps sales, but also improves your brand recognition and awareness goals. ABM is a very reliable means to add the “missing” value of empathy in marketing and sales. For example, Vonage announced the Homeless Link. Homeless Link has been able to handle a 250 percent increase in calls while operating remotely, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the Vonage Contact Center. Similar developments have been announced by Genesys, Microsoft Teams, Google, Hubspot, Adobe, Salesforce, and others to connect with every section of the society impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
How to choose your COVID-19 content publisher to lead your ABM goals?
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