Marketers lacking skills and resources to successfully deliver ABM

Two-thirds of marketers consider ABM very important to their business, yet most of them lack the skills and resources to deliver on its opportunities, a recent survey by B2B Marketing has found.

The Account-based marketing benchmarking report surveyed over 300 marketers and found that 60% believe their team only have some of the capabilities to successfully deliver ABM, with only a quarter having all or many. This reflects an urgent need to upskill staff or meet the risk of poor delivery - or worse still, declining market share.

Foremost among these skills is insight and profile building customer focus – curiosity, ingenuity and lateral thinking. “The main transition marketers need to make is centred around their attitude to sales, ensuring not just alignment but ingoing collaborative working," said Joel Harrison, the company’s editor-in-chief at B2B Marketing’s ABM Conference: Account-Based Everything – where he released these findings. "In the long run, the boundaries between the two will have to blur significantly."

'The impact of marketing automation is fading'

Explaining the surging interest in ABM, Joel said: “The impact of marketing automation is fading; now that everyone is doing low-level automation at scale, it’s become the norm. Meanwhile, buyer expectations are increasing and they're more likely to do external research before buying. That means brands need to work harder to engage them.”

He added: “While ABM can be extremely potent, even transformational for B2B brands, it's no easy route to success. It requires focus and dedication in order to succeed."

While marketers – and their B2B customers – are particularly responsive to the prospects of a highly personalised and targeted approach, only half of those surveyed have deployed ABM and just 10% have run ABM for a year.

The report also revealed just 16% of B2B marketers are confident they have a good understanding of the technology currently available for ABM, with the release of a new ABM tech guide (How and when to deploy technology for ABM) also announced at the Conference.

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