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Account-Based Marketing for European Audiences: Identifying the Best Accounts

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Oscar Pierce-Saunderson

B2B businesses across Europe are using ABM platforms and intent data to revolutionise their sales cycles and drive new periods of growth.

 

However, sales resources must be used to their best advantage, which in the context of ABM means at some point learning to identify the most valuable options from your growing list of target accounts.

But what does “best” mean? This is a more complicated question than first appears. ABM isn’t just about deal size, company size and profitability—there are several more subtle, strategic reasons for businesses to target a specific account.

In this blog, we’ll go into these reasons, as well as the tools and practices sales teams will need for effective decision-making. In relation to ABM in Europe specifically, there are challenges in using data and the data that’s available—but these can be overcome, and as it stands potential European customers can be identified and targeted more effectively than ever before.

Begin your ABM strategy by defining your campaign goals

It’s essential to have a clear and nuanced picture of your campaign goals from the very beginning of the prospecting process. Insight here can be drawn from both sales and marketing teams to form a clear picture of the objective you are trying to achieve.

There are a number of common reasons for selecting an account for ABM:

  • Profits. The most immediate and simple reason—maximise revenue and lifetime value, while minimising resources.
  • Strategic importance. For example, you’re about to enter a new market, and logo acquisition is what’s needed for success.
  • Waking the dead’. Lost deals are not forgotten. ABM is the ideal method to re-engage prospects who might be coming to the end of the renewing cycle with another solution.
  • “Land and expand”. The goal here is to close with a subsidiary and use them as a touchpoint.
  • Quick wins. Often a quick win is needed to meet targets and clear the way for more complex accounts. Quick win accounts will be selected based on the length and complexity of the buying cycle.
  • Territories. Businesses in Europe will often have target accounts in specific territories. Using powerful intent data alongside ABM makes identifying these targets more effective than ever, with platforms like Cyance offering GDPR-compliant solutions able to break down local language barriers, which for many sales teams working on European accounts has meant suboptimal data and targeting ability.

Understanding your best-fit accounts and buyer personas requires research and insight to get right. So how can this process be taken to the next level?

Using the best intent data to find your ICP (ideal customer profile)

First- or third-party data sources drive successful account targeting and sales decisions.

Understanding the intent of your buyers means you can identify good fit prospects via less obvious ICP markers, so you can refine and expand your list of accounts based on actionable information. ICPs can be as simple or as complex, as is necessary, so the more data you can use to make your decisions, the better they will be.

Both firmographic and technographic data should be harnessed to power the account selection process. CRM data is an effective way to add insight to this process. It’s possible to identify patterns from minimal data points, especially with the help of specialist insight and buy-in from strategic leaders in your organisation. Take this up a notch and predictive analytics can be used, whereby this data can be analysed via machine learning to predict trends.

On the other hand, with the right technology, third party intent data can be synthesized via your ABM platform. With the curated data, you can build an accurate profile of buyer behaviour—as well as using intent signals to create the best strategy for nurturing and closing the account.

Use surging intent for ABM success

There is another factor when it comes to choosing your best accounts—timing.

Where is the buyer in the buying cycle? They might be receptive to your solution, but will they be receptive right now? And if not now, then when?

It’s difficult to accurately predict the answers to these questions. However, if you were able to see intent changes in real-time, then you would be able to act at the right moment. With the right data, it’s possible to view changes in account behaviour in relation to previous activity or a benchmark, and this information can be used to prioritise accounts that are preparing to buy.

In order to use data in this way, you will have to choose the right platform. Many platforms, including Bombora, provide data based on fixed signals, related to set topics or keyword groups. Cyance is the only platform that allows users to create customised lists of keywords and topics, so that the data you receive, and the metrics you devise from them, are unique. This allows for the granularity, segmentation and sophistication required for optimal account prioritisation.

From selection to closing for your ABM strategy

Selection is the first part of your ABM campaign. After this, marketers and the sales team can use intent data not only to pinpoint the right buyers at the right time but to target stakeholders and decision-makers with the right messaging to steer them through the buying cycle. This is the true power of intent data—every stage can be optimised via the clear insight provided by accurate data.

With accurate and compliant European data, platforms like Cyance offer the best method of turning key accounts into high-value accounts. Now that you’re able to choose the right accounts, you’re closer than ever to closing them.