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The Complete Guide to Account-Based Marketing (ABM) for Material Handling Companies

By Evan Lamolinara | 10/03/2019 | 1:54 PM | Categories: Current Affairs

Is account-based marketing (ABM) part of your material handling company's sales strategy? According to a survey conducted by Altera Group, an overwhelming Abm number of B2B sales reps (97%) said ABM delivers either a somewhat higher or much higher return on investment (ROI) than traditional outreach tactics. As a result, it's become an increasingly popular way for material handling companies to connect with their target audience and sell their respective products and services. To effectively use ABM in your company's sales process, though, you must understand how this tactic works.

What Is ABM?

Also known as a key account marketing, ABM is a relatively new marketing and sales concept that involves targeting specific, high-value accounts while treating these accounts as individual buyers. It's no secret that some material handling buyers are more valuable than others. If you have a long-lasting buyer who's been with your company for several years, he or she may purchase more products or services -- or otherwise spend more money -- than a new buyer whom your material handling company just recently required. With ABM, you focus your sales efforts on high-value accounts such as this. It's a highly effective way to nurture your company's key accounts so that you'll generate the highest ROI possible.

Identify Key Accounts

To use ABM in your material handling company's sales strategy, you must first identify key accounts to target. In the B2B industry, the term "key account" refers to any existing buyer who's more valuable than the average buyer. Just a few key accounts can drive more sales revenue than dozens or even hundreds of other accounts. They'll buy more products or services and perhaps even recommend your material handling company to their colleagues or coworkers.

So, how do you distinguish between key account buyers and traditional buyers? Here are a few telltale signs of a key account:

  • Larger average order value (AOV)
  • Most frequent purchases
  • Larger budget
  • Long-standing professional relationship with your company
  • Require less time and fewer resources to convert

Align Marketing and Sales

Another essential concept of ABM is sales and marketing alignment. A report published by HubSpot suggests that fewer than one in four B2B companies align their sales and marketing departments. The report goes on to reinforce the importance of sales and marketing alignment with ABM. While marketing and sales departments perform different tasks, they both have a shared goal of converting sales leads and prospects into paying buyers. If these two departments work independently of each other, you can expect fewer sales, resulting in a lackluster ABM strategy.

Personalize Messages

When communicating with key account, take the time to personalize your material handling company's messages. According to an eConsultancy survey, nearly three in four companies say personalizes messages boost buyer engagement. A separate study conducted by Experian found that personalized emails drive 600% higher conversion rates than non-personalized emails. Whether you're communicating with a key account by email, phone, live chat, direct mail or other mediums, be sure to personalize your messages to improve the effectiveness of your ABM efforts.

Over-Deliver to Key Accounts

One of the best ways to boost the retention rate of your material handling company's key accounts is to over-deliver. In other words, don't just meet their expectations -- exceed the expectations. If a key account expects a service to be completed by the 15th of the month, perhaps you can finish it by the 13th or 14th. Alternatively, you can offer product upgrades or freebies with a key account's order. Over-delivering encourages key accounts to stay with your material handling company while promoting a higher level of buyer satisfaction in the process.

Gain Feedback from Key Accounts

Don't underestimate the importance of buyer feedback in ABM. Key accounts generally have a higher level of satisfaction than other buyers. By asking key accounts for insight into their experience, you'll gain valuable feedback that can be used to identify new customers that are similar to them. You can use feedback surveys, for example, that ask key accounts questions about their recent purchase, or you can simply call key accounts to discuss whether they are satisfied with their recent purchase.

While gaining their feedback, as for their testimonial online, on video or both!  

Use Multiple Communication Channels

Finally, remember to use multiple channels to communicate with your material handling company's key accounts. You can't always assume a key account will check, as well as use, a single and specific channel. As a result, relying on just one channel to communicate with key accounts is a surefire recipe for failure. Some key accounts prefer phone calls, whereas others prefer email. By using multiple channels, you can reach key accounts using their preferred method of communication, which should translate into a more effective ABM strategy.

Is there a Way to Get More Key Accounts….Quickly?

In order to get a new key account, you need to identify larger accounts that have greater potential today so they can be a key account for you tomorrow. One of the fastest ways is to know who is building, expanding or renovating their facility. That’s where SalesLeads comes in.

We help speed up the process by providing you with identified projects within the industrial community. These special sales leads are facilities, distribution centers, manufacturers and logistics companies either looking to or have already begun the process of building new construction, renovating or expanding their business. We always encourage trying out a few of our recent project reports to call by opening up a free account. Once you’ve experienced it, you’ll be able to begin growing your current key accounts…and making a few new ones along the way.

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The opinions expressed herein are those solely of the participants, and do not necessarily represent the views of Agile Business Media, LLC., its properties or its employees.

About Evan Lamolinara

Evan Lamolinara

Evan Lamolinara is president of SalesLeads, Inc., a company that has been around for over 60 years, generating high quality sales leads dedicated to the sales & marketing professionals in the industrial marketplace. Mr. Lamolinara, an entrepreneur and competitor, purchased the legacy company in 2014. Since then, he's redeveloped its core software delivery platform and grew the company over 400%. Evan graduated from Mount Union College with B.A. Business Management and honed his competitive skills as a 3-year letterman on the College football team.



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