Account Based Intelligence (ABI):
The data, which measures a prospect’s behaviour and activity in the market and provides context about propensity to buy in real time is called Account Based Intelligence (ABI). Inside large technology companies, many B2B sales and marketing teams have too many leads. These teams enrich accounts with firmographic and techno graphic data to find leads that match their ideal customer profile (ICP). This data helps them segment accounts but rarely helps them target accounts with the highest propensity to buy, or the highest likelihood to purchase the product. ABI helps to solve this problem. Better opportunities are surfaced when accounts are populated with data that shows how leads are engaged with a company’s product and market in real time.
Tools that provided relatively static data helped companies prioritize accounts before the existence of sales and marketing tools. This data identified the industry, employee count, annual revenue, and even technology used by accounts, but it didn’t show how prospects were interacting with the market or using technology. ABI tools recently emerged to solve this problem. These tools also collect behavioural and contextual data like their predecessors but that data is dynamic and updated regularly, helping companies target accounts at the right time.
A prospect’s likelihood to buy in real time is determined by the help of ABI. Contextual data, out of the four data types, is the most valuable. Contextual data shows you how an account is using a specific web service or technology as compared to techno graphic data that shows you if an account is using it. This entirely changes the game for a technology company.
Why is ABI necessary for the success of ABM?
In many organisations, ABM is gaining momentum. The keys to success take an account-centric approach and focus your time and resources on opportunities with the highest potential ROI. Sales identify the key accounts to pursue and marketing uses tactics and campaigns designed to reach key accounts and maximize coverage.
That is all well and good, but what if sales and marketing do not have the information required to reach the right people at the right accounts with the right messages? You can say you are using ABM, but without ABI, the results will not be as impactful. ABI provides the information needed to turn up the volume on ABM initiatives and take them to the next level. Many different sources of information can be used for ABI.
It’s time to begin using ABI, once you have started gathering it. This information can be leveraged throughout the marketing and sales lifecycle, adding value at each step of the way:
Five ways to make the most of ABI:
- Identify Trigger Events: Beat the competition by identifying trigger events early, like decision makers who have left the company. Remember that when it comes to gaining new business, “first in” wins.
- Weed out the Rotten Apples: Improve your database hygiene and reverse customer database decay.
- Can You Hear Me Now? Through personalization and segmentation, make your marketing more audible.
- Pump up the Volume: Grow the pipeline and increase penetration.
- Replenish Your Coffers: Increase customer renewal rates and maintain revenue levels.
Four best practices to start putting ABI to work in your organisation:
First focus on accounts and then on personas as the primary focus should be on accounts with ABM and ABI. What the Ideal Account Profile (IAP) looks like, should be defined by the sales and marketing team. Organisation’s “best fit” accounts should first have the devotion of the resources and efforts. Next, attention is focused on the personas that make up the Ideal Buyer Profile (IBP).
ABM and ABI works best if the sales and marketing teams are aligned, understand one another’s roles and have complementary goals. On target accounts is the focus of most B2B sales teams and they need account intelligence from marketing to penetrate those accounts. This will only happen if the marketing team establishes goals related to generating leads in specific accounts. Alignment between the two departments is the key.
Emails should be sent to nurture prospects. Time the delivery of email during long weekends and other holidays, and then mine the email responses for additional intelligence.
At least once per month, send email to existing customers. Also, be sure to send messages that are tailored to each person’s role and interests. This is an effective way to stay abreast of changes in the customer base, whether that is a new phone number, email address, or a change in title.
ABI also forms the foundation of an account based strategy by providing marketers and salespeople with the information they need to:
- Discover the right companies and best people to contact those companies.
- Identify the critical moment when customers are ready to buy.
- Inform your reps of the most impactful things to say to each potential customer.