5 comments

  1. Pingback: Is Your Marketing Budget Keeping Pace with Changing Buyer Behavior?B2B Services Marketing
  2. Richard Seymour

    Julie, ABM as you well know has been around for many years. Since those early days in 2003/2004, the whole approach to focusing resources on chosen accounts, has moved on significantly. All of the main competitors in IT Services have, or are working on, an ABM or ABM-like programme, and are striving to improve or enhance their existing programmes

    ABM is not and cannot, be marketing managed; it is, and has to be, a team effort with sales and marketing. At ITSMA we spend a lot of our time working with member companies ( and some non-member companies too), helping them develop account specific plans for a chosen account. You can call that ABM if you like, or you can call it strategic selling to a chosen key account; either way, it’s about understanding the customer better than anyone thought possible, and then working as a sales and marketing team to deliver campaigns or programmes that help the account team deliver.

    We just completed, in Europe, a workshop for another major client last week, on one of their selected accounts – just one account. We spent time working with the account team, before we workshopped the plan . We had everyone in the room who had a stake in the account. The account director is one of the top performing account directors in the business and he sees the benefits. So – it’s not just “marketing;” it’s helping the account team do the best possible job. It’s about ensuring the account team have the right value propositions to sell to the account, the right content at the right time; it’s about understanding each individual decision maker, each influencer, and ensuring that they get what they need to make the right decisions… and it’s about helping the account team define priorities, define the “big bets” that they need to make their targets, and what needs to be done to make that reality.
    For me, that’s ABM!!!

  3. Rob Leavitt

    Great post Julie — I was there at the creation, so to speak, and am equally frustrated at the bastardization of the term over the last 4-5 years even as “real” ABM has begun to take hold well beyond the early pioneers that you cite. Certainly there are different flavors of ABM, as you also note, but the core focus on investing in deep insight to support tailored, long-term strategic initiatives with key accounts is a far cry from the formulaic approaches mentioned in your piece.

    • Julie
      Julie

      Thanks Rob. It’s good to know that I have company on my soap box! You are correct when you the “real” ABM is taking hold. Last week’s ITSMA ABM certification course was sold out.

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