B2B SaaS companies are increasingly moving toward account-based marketing, and with good reason. Recent studies show that by adopting an ABM strategy, you can achieve a surge in annual contracts, boost opportunities, and of course, exceed revenue goals on a regular basis. These benefits are precisely why a whopping 70% of marketers in 2021 reported they were using ABM, up from just 15% in 2020!
The world, as we know it, divides into two when it comes to the different types of SaaS founders:
- The Salesy (some would also say Marketing) SaaS founder.
- The Techie SaaS founder.
So, if your heart is in code and not marketing or sales, how do you leverage an account-based marketing strategy to boost demand generation and grow your Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR)?
Let’s dive into how SaaS founders just like you can grow ARR through account-based marketing (ABM).
Shifting Code, Closing Deals
As a techie, your number one priority is writing code. And it should be! We live in a world fuelled by code, from the vehicles we drive, to the entertainment we consume to relax to educating ourselves online (this article wouldn’t exist without code). And just as code is integral to the modern world, it’s integral to the success of your app.
When you write excellent code, you make exceptional products that keep your existing customers satisfied and new customers knocking on your door. So, we’re not here to tell you to take a break from writing code. Quite the opposite, actually – if your skills are on the technical side, then keep doing what you know best.
As a founder, you have to strive to meet your revenue goal. Of course, writing compelling code is a massive part of this, but so is strengthening your sales and marketing strategies. This is where account-based marketing comes in.
According to recent developments in regards to the economic turndown more and more companies find it hard to scale their Marketing and Sales disciplines as they see a clear spike in cost per lead, customer acquisition cost (CAC), and their overall return on Marketing investment is much lower now. This is exactly the time to shift toward Account Based Marketing (ABM).
Why Make the Shift Toward Account-Based Marketing?
ABM is often described as ‘fishing with spears’ rather than ‘fishing with nets.’ In simple words, account-based marketing involves concentrating your resources toward key, targeted accounts.
So, while inbound marketing is centered around generating as many leads as possible, ABM does it the other way around. The idea here is that B2B SaaS founders should embrace the reality that not everyone is the right fit for your product or service, so why devote sales and marketing resources to a customer who won’t stick around? You shouldn’t.
You probably heard this term before, but ABX (Account Based Experience) is the new motion of many B2B SaaS companies nowadays.
The main reason is simply since ABX speaks to how marketing works with the rest of the organization and not just with sales, and essentially creating this stellar customer experience we all aim to provide.
ABX aligns all go-to-market efforts to the account journey while contacting accounts where it makes more sense using insights and intelligence as opposed to ABM which is more ‘interruption based’.
Another thing is that ABM is mainly pipeline-focused, while ABX is a whole new approach that focuses on the entire customer lifecycle (including pipeline).
Who wouldn’t want to have stronger, and more trusted relationships with their customers?
Why ABM/ABX Is The #1 Growth Lever For Your Sales Funnel?
ABM works by aligning all customer-centric teams, including sales and marketing, so they can collaborate to engage and nurture a specific set of target accounts. Doing this can drive stronger, more valuable customer relationships and boost retention.
Concentrating resources and focus means you can better leverage personalized campaigns designed to meet the specific attributes and needs of the account in front of you.
Critically, ABM is a fundamental part of the quest to grow ARR in SaaS. Why? Because account-based marketing that’s a holistic approach to sales and marketing that goes beyond demand generation. You can use ABM to win business from new accounts, but it’s equally effective at protecting and growing existing accounts too. For example, by tightening and strengthening your messaging to existing accounts, you can encourage upselling and cross-selling, thereby getting the most value from your largest accounts and boosting ARR.
Account-Based Marketing (ABM): The Hypothesis In The B2B SaaS Space
When we compare the B2C buying process to the B2B buying process, there’s one notable difference – B2B typically happens over a more extended period of time. So while B2C often focuses on shorter demand generation campaigns that target one individual, B2B focuses on longer campaigns that target a key group of decision-makers. This is one of the major reasons B2B SaaS companies have adopted ABM strategies enthusiastically.
In addition, B2B SaaS companies often get most of their revenue from a small number of large accounts. With this in mind, to grow your ARR in SaaS, SaaS founders need to hone in on your large accounts, continually nurturing and listening to them. Again, ABM is the most effective way of doing this.
The Power of Predictability, 5 Steps You Can Steal To Grow ARR Through Account-Based Marketing
Identifying Your Most Important Accounts
You probably heard this before, ‘Make a list of your 100’s dream accounts’.
In case you did, or didn’t, your first step should be identifying high-value accounts to target or, in the case of your existing accounts, which ones bring you the most revenue. Some characteristics of a high-value account are:
● They have easily accessible decision-makers.
● They bring in or have the potential to bring in the most revenue.
● They have an immediate need to purchase your product or service (high intent).
● They have a lower customer acquisition cost (the amount you’re willing to spend on a new customer).
Visitor identification tools can give you insight into who is looking at your product. Similarly, researching high-value companies that are well-suited to your product can help you hone in on your targets.
Gathering As Much Insight as Possible Into Your Account
To successfully target your important accounts, you need to know as much about them as possible. One key aspect of this is identifying who the best person to target is. For example, it could be the head of marketing, the VP, or someone else. Typically you can find the answer to this question by researching the company on LinkedIn.
Create an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and Align Your Proposition
ABM is selective, so you need to be thorough when targeting companies. You want companies to say, “this product is speaking directly to me.” To create an ICP, you need to look at several factors, including revenue, location, number of employees, industry segment, growth rate, type of decision-maker, whether they’re a public or private company, and more.
Assigning More Budget to Accounts With Higher Potential Value
Many companies that embark on account-based marketing decide on a
target acquisition cost and apply this figure across the board. However, this isn’t the most effective way to grow ARR in B2B SaaS through account-based marketing. Instead, you should allocate more budget to the accounts with the highest potential to drive more revenue.
Investing in an ABM Solution
Embarking on ABM on your own can seem daunting and time-consuming. In addition, a certain amount of know-how and energy is associated with getting the most from account-based marketing. Luckily, the whole process is made much easier, more focused, and streamlined with an ABM solution like Acquisent’s Marketing Framework.
Acquisent can help create detailed customer personas so you can gain insight into how your customers think and buy. In addition, it can create personalized storytelling content for decision-makers and strategically target your ICPs to grow your ARR. Book a demo today to see what Acquisent can do for you!
Account-based marketing is taking the B2B SaaS world by storm, and this trend looks set to continue. If you’re a techie SaaS founder, your focus will be on strengthening the technology in every area of your business – and this makes sense. It’s what you excel at; it’s what your product needs to become the best in the market. But, at the same time, marketing can’t be left to chance. So, while you can’t be everything to everyone (a techie and a marketer), you can leverage leading tools to grow ARR in B2B SaaS through account-based marketing.