If you’re like most marketers, you’re likely always on the lookout for new and innovative ways to scale your ABM efforts. You know that if you can just get over the hump and achieve critical mass, you’ll be well on your way to reaching those all-important revenue goals. But how do you get there? It’s not easy, especially when your current tech stack is holding you back. There are, of course, lots of considerations around how to select the right technologies to help you successfully scale your ABM program, but to start things off, here are five key ones.
1. What is the outcome you’re trying to reach?
Whilst it may seem like an obvious point, start with the end in mind. With new platforms, applications and technologies coming on to the market on an almost daily basis the choices can be overwhelming, but having clarity around what you’re trying to achieve can help to make decisions less daunting.
Are you looking to bring your sales colleagues into the process more? Do you need greater insight into the accounts you’re targeting and the engagement they’re displaying? Do you need to automate parts of the process to free up resources or reduce spend? Are you trying to create more personalized experiences for individuals at target accounts? Can you measure the full impact of the work you’re doing?
Being really clear on where it is you’re trying to get to, will help provide a framework for evaluating possible solutions.
2. What are you missing at the moment?
With the outcomes you’re looking to achieve defined, now’s the time to look at what Martech is needed to get there. But before you start evaluating new tools, it’s worth reviewing what you’ve already got access to. The most common thing we see when working with clients isn’t actually a lack of technology, but rather a lack of utilising what they’ve already got. Carrying out a full gap analysis of the capabilities of your existing Martech stack is really important and could potentially save you budget!
3. How much change management is needed?
If you find that new technologies are needed to help achieve the outcomes you’re looking to drive, the next stage is to evaluate the steps that need to be taken to deliver a successful rollout. It’s highly likely that you’ll need to secure buy-in from a range of stakeholders outside of your core ABM program – IT, Compliance, Sales Ops, Marketing Ops, etc etc.
Careful consideration will also be needed around how the new technology will fit with current processes. To get the most out of your investment, does it also need people to change the way they do things? The chances are that, if it does, your colleagues will need to be incredibly clear on what the tangible benefits to them will be, or you’re unlikely to drive long term adoption.
Planning for enablement, training and long term responsibility for any new technology is crucial to ensuring success. Having a Rolls Royce is lovely, but if no one knows how to drive, or switch it on, it’s pointless!
4. Do you have the skills in-house to take things forward?
The fight to attract and retain talent in marketing roles is well publicised, but this problem is multiplied manifold when it comes to Marketing Technology roles. Finding people with experience in key platforms and technologies is a real struggle and consequently you might want to look at building out specific training programmes or working with an external provider to deliver them.
Many other organizations look at working with partners to oversee, run and optimize the Martech approach. Working with experts who have the benefit of working across a wide range of technologies, situations and approaches means that a lot of the early stumbles and mistakes can be avoided, allowing value to be realized quicker.
5. What will you do next?
I began this piece by suggesting that you should start with the end in mind. The truth is, of course, that there is no definitive end point. As marketing approaches and technology platforms continue to evolve, your thinking needs to keep pace. But there are ways of planning for change, for example building out a roadmap can help you define your long term strategy which in turn will help you make decisions now about what to invest in in the future.. You need to know that the investments you make will have easy integration into things you may want to adopt for the future.
A path forwards
As already mentioned, there are, of course, hundreds of considerations when it comes to reviewing and upgrading your Martech stack as you scale up ABM efforts, but hopefully these five areas provide a starting point to your decision making.. Of course if you’d be interested in speaking to our ABM and Martech specialist teams, about how to tackle it, please get in touch!