B2B Marketers’ Use of ABM Grows

September 7, 2018

This article is included in these additional categories:

B2B | Business of Marketing | Customer-Centric | Industries | Internal Collaboration | Lead Generation & Management

B2B marketers appear to be integrating account-based marketing into their efforts at a greater rate this year than last, research from Bizible [download page] has found. This year more than one-third (35.9%) of marketers surveyed said that at least half of their marketing is account-based marketing (ABM).

That’s up from about one-quarter (25.8%) last year who said that much of their marketing was devoted to account-based efforts.

Overall adoption has also grown: 7 in 10 survey respondents use ABM at least to some degree, up from 64% last year.

ABM Used For Nurturing Programs

In a separate new survey [download page], Demand Gen Report (DGR) reveals that B2B marketers are testing new ways to improve the efficiency of their lead nurturing programs, and the use of ABM figures prominently.

In fact, almost half (48%) of marketers surveyed report that account-based nurtures are a new approach taken with their nurture programs. That rivals the use of retargeting (49%) and event marketing (50%) as new tactics.

ABM Effectiveness Not A Given

While it’s true that account-based marketing efforts seem to be gaining a greater foothold in organizations, there isn’t widespread consensus yet as to their effectiveness.

Only 1 in 4 respondents (27%) to the Bizible survey, for example, consider their account-based marketing to be effective. Far more (66%) consider these efforts to be somewhat effective for the time being.

ABM also trails other tactics within nurture initiatives: fewer respondents to the DGR study tabbed ABM as effective within their nurture initiatives than any other tactic, including webinars, white papers, thought leadership articles, and email newsletters.

What could be causing these efforts to fall short of their goals? In a recent study, marketers pointed to lack of executional ability as the top reason why ABM efforts could fail. The next-biggest risk was lack of alignment with sales.

As for alignment with sales, the Bizible study encouragingly shows that almost 3 times as many respondents characterize their relationship as aligned (31%) than misaligned (12%). For most (56%), though, the relationship is just somewhat aligned…

The full study from Bizible is available for download here. The DGR survey can be downloaded here.

For more on ABM, see these articles:

About the Data: The Bizible results are based on a survey of 400 marketers, 8 in 10 of whom are B2B marketers. The majority of respondents come from companies with more than $10 million in revenue, and close to half have marketing budgets this year of at least $500k.

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