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Santa’s Secret Revealed: Account-Based Marketing

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Santa Claus is real and he is an ardent implementer of Account-Based Marketing (ABM). So who better to learn it from than Father Christmas himself?

ABM has increased in popularity recently but Santa has been using it for past so many centuries. Before getting into the nitty-gritty of Santa’s ABM strategy, you can brush up on all that is ABM. We have prepared a guide just for that purpose.

Christmas is a difficult time for Santa as the list building and executing takes a lot of time, work and cooperation within the North Pole – the location of Santa Claus’ factory, of course. But when all these efforts unite and focus on the target accounts, the results are remarkable.

Santa’s Process

There are 5 essential steps Santa takes as part of his ABM program and these are steps you can follow and apply in your own marketing programs.

STEP 1: Discover and define a list of deserving accounts

Right now Santa already has a list of people who are naughty and nice but he still needs to check it again. He and his team of elves, his sales team, conduct further research into their data to discover the exact attributes they want to use as criteria to determine this year’s list. Some key attributes that he evaluates include:

  • Target accounts location, their target industry, and its size. This helps Santa map out the updated locations of all the people on his nice and naughty list.
  • The viability of the contacts on the nice list and whether they are still meant to be targeted or if they deserve to be transferred to the naughty list.
  • Research the interests and behavior of their ideal prospects to understand their journey, product interests, and personas so as to get each of them the perfect gift. 
  • Strategic goals that need to be achieved like expansion into new markets and even growing their current market to include more prospects as there are children being born every day.

STEP 2: Define personalized and effective messaging

Santa initially maps gifts given during the previous Christmas to each target account and this helps him clearly assess whether the same gifts are still relevant or need to be updated. This personalization is very vital when it comes to ABM. Once you have determined the ideal account, you need to take a step back to analyze your content and see how well it has been accepted.

Based on the list the person’s name comes in, Santa offers them their appropriate gift or they just get a piece of coal.  Same way, you must construct your messaging in order to offer value that is based on the personas of your target audience, their customer journey, and their account type.

STEP 3: Determine the ideal channels

Just as the same gift does not work with every person, similarly the same content does not work with every prospect. Before Santa sets out to distribute gifts, he must begin nurturing his prospects and he does this by spreading cheer. The days before Christmas is filled with carolers, Christmas tree shopping, decorations being hung, a little snowfall, ugly Christmas sweaters being knit and worn. All this keeps the people longingly waiting for Christmas to come, in this way Santa ‘nurtures’ them.  

Reach out to your audience from whichever media works best. They can even be traditional media like magazines, events or intelligent touch points like website content, blogs, PPC, referrals, etc. which will get the prospect eager for the final purchase.

STEP 4: Execute the targeted campaign

For a successful Christmas delivery, Santa needs to adopt 2 main qualities; speed and relevancy. He needs to be fast in his delivery so that he can reach all homes in one night and he needs to give them the gift that is right for them. So it is pointless if he just gets a great gift but falls short and doesn’t get to deliver it at midnight or if he delivers the wrong gift to a person.

In the same way, an effective campaign needs to concentrate on timing after perfecting the content. You will only get a small window of time during which you must make the most of it and grab the attention of your target account. If you present the right content in real-time it will help in nudging them further down the sales funnel.

STEP 5: Measure, learn and optimize

Once Santa has delivered as many gifts as is possible by him, he – along with his elf sales team – begins calculation of the results. How many houses he was able to reach? How many people got the wrong gift? How many more people believe in Santa now? With the information, they learn they begin optimizing next year’s Christmas.

As a marketer, measuring, learning and optimizing becomes much easier when implementing ABM as you are focused on a much smaller group of target accounts that have a higher likelihood of offering a much larger potential value. When measuring conversion metrics; calculate revenue increase, sales cycle reduction and customer loyalty.

Wrap Up

As Santa has been delivering gifts, cheer, and joy for centuries, he has a huge following. As a marketer, you will slowly see that the accounts that you are targeting are beginning to generate revenue and consistently evaluating your content and personas will help you deliver the right content to the right audience.

As you keep implementing this strategy, in the long term, your cost per lead will lower especially because of your mastery of fine-grained targeting. This will in turn spill over to great website metrics as your focus will be fixed on creating highly targeted and personalized content.

Just remember that marketing without Account-Based Marketing is like Christmas without Santa Claus.

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