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Treating accounts as a market in themselves lays the foundation for successful ABM campaigns. Laser-focussed problem-solving, empathy and thoughtful gifts will help you thrive with your campaigns.

Let’s start with a secret 🤫 To convert, sell dreams, not services.

How, you ask? The best way to do this is to get personal. Every dream is personal. Account-Based Marketing allows you to personalize dreams for your potential clients and nourish existing ones. ABM helps you leverage the USP of your business and sell it to a targeted audience in the hope of getting them to be your loyal customers. So, use your product to empower these customers to achieve their dreams.

Make it personal. Make it special. Make it exclusive.

Sounds like a lot, huh? Take a breath 😮‍💨. We’ve got you covered.

ABM has been around for a while, but this age of hyper-personalization has made this mode of B2B marketing a fan favorite. Human beings are always craving to feel special. As a marketer, you are equipped to make them feel that way and (potentially) turn that into revenue for your business. Account-Based Marketing is a way to turn your marketing funnel on its head. This allows you to choose the customers you want to have.

stages of the ABM funnel
Guide to Maximizing RoI on ABM Campaigns
High-ticket sales, Greater Revenue, Up-sells and Cross-sells, whatever you want to achieve with ABM campaigns - You have reached the right place.

Five things to remember when running an ABM Campaign

  1. “Don’t count the people you reach; reach the people that count.” – David Ogilvy
  2. Your ABM campaigns must be 🔬 Insight led, 💻 Technology-enabled, and 🧐 Customer focused for you to get the most out of them.
  3. Your Marketing Team needs to work with your Sales Team to identify 🎯 target accounts and create a 📝 strategy to reach them. ABM works parallelly with the sales pipeline.
  4. You must plan your ABM Campaign around four stages - 🔎 Identify, Expand, 🧲 Engage, and 📢 Advocate.
  5. To run a successful ABM Campaign, you need four primary resources - 👩🏻‍💻👨🏻‍💼 People, 💻 Technology, 💰 Money and ⏰ Time.

The channel you choose to run your ABM campaign can be one of the many available. Or something you can choose to create yourself!

ABM Event Campaigns | Choose the guests YOU want at your events

💥 Campaign Idea #1 | Lunch and Learn | Using Webinar audiences to convert to leads through gifts

Lunch and Learn | using webinars audiences to convert to leads through gifts

The shortest way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach. The news is not new, but the implementation of the strategy in marketing can be. Combining this old classic with a new-age presentation can give you the leads you are looking for. It could be something as simple as a coffee card, pizza, or donuts, or coupons for a specially curated lunch! Check out the insane options Xoxoday offers with their food and beverage gift cards. 🎁🎁

This strategy encourages attendance and also helps with attentiveness and engagement. Needless to say, having content that is carefully curated with a well-thought-out CTA and a customized landing page all adds to the personalization of the experience. For more tips on planning an online event to remember, check A to Z of Webinar Planning.

Best suited for: This is a strategy you could use to engage new accounts or renew existing accounts that may not be very actively engaged with your business.

Real-world example: BMC, a software solutions company, conducted webinars regularly and was looking to boost the attendance at their webinars. When they conducted a webinar and sent out lunch coupons, they saw their attendance triple and become more engaging.

💥 Campaign Idea #2 | Curated Events for Local Clients | Nurture existing clients to become a living advertisement for you

Curated Events for Local Clients

Do your services attract clientele from a particular geography or demography? If yes, choose to organize an exclusive event with food in the target audience’s geography.

Send out e-invites with digital coupons (food experience) to make prospects feel special. Curate a special menu and make the experience one for your clients to remember. If you’re feeling extra generous, throw in the client’s option to get free drinks if they get a plus one along! It could also be an event to remember if you give your prospects an event experience - fancy a hot air balloon ride followed by a presentation? Or a mani-pedi while you pitch your latest product? It doesn’t matter where you are; here’s some inspiration for experiences you can plan your event around. When planning an event such as this, remember to ask yourself how to make the activity relevant to the individuals within your target list.

Just in case you’re looking for more ideas to optimize ROI in the on-ground events department, look no further than here - Engagement strategy for On-ground Events.

Best suited for: Localized businesses or businesses looking to capture a particular geographical market. 

ABM One to One Campaigns | Create a hyper-personalized campaign for your chosen client

💥 Campaign Idea #3 | Tell stories with your clients as heroes | Bullseye Client Targeting

Tell stories with your clients as heroes | Bullseye Client Targeting

Every business has its dream client. You’d be lying if you said you didn’t! More often than not, that dream client is a big name, or an enigma. So how do you get the attention of these clients? How do you stand out of the crowd?

The simple answer is - Go all out!

Use the most powerful tool to connect emotionally with another human being - a story. If you think your client is worth it, hey, design a comic with him as the hero and your company as his sidekick. Nope, we’re not kidding.

Best suited for: A high resource-driven ABM campaign that usually targets a very specific client. Won’t work as a generalised ABM campaign for a demographic or group.

Real-world example: Say hey 👋🏼 to one of the most focused, (in our humble opinion) most epic ABM campaigns in history - Gumgum’s T-Man and Gums. Gumgum, a contextual intelligence company, really wanted to land T-Mobile as a client. Some digging on social media and research around the CEO John Legere revealed that he was a big fan of Batman. So, in a genius personalised ABM move, they created a comic where the CEO was T-Man and Gumgum was his side-kick, Gums. Together, T-Man and Gums save the city from a bad cell phone network. Then, powered by Gumgum’s image-recognizing marketing technology, T-Man can more effectively get the word out about T-Mobile.

If you think this was over the top, you’d probably be right. But, it appealed to emotion, played on his love for Batman and was too lovely for the T-Man to ignore!

Not only did Gumgum land the deal, but they also got tons of positive exposure and a shout-out on Twitter by the man himself. And yes, of course, Gumgum landed the client!

ABM Content-Driven Campaigns | Use powerful content along with digital gift cards

💥 Campaign Idea #4 | Share impactful visual content with meaningful gifts | Build a client base

Share impactful visual content with meaningful gifts | Build a client base

A tried and tested way to encourage prospects to become clients is to show them what you know and what you can do. Creating content around your services that address pain points of prospects you are looking to convert has the ability to open the doors of business opportunity for you. To make that door look even more enticing, maybe add a reward in the form of a service or product that compliments yours.

Choose to go the direct mail route or the email route, or even use social media as a platform to showcase your products and services visually. The fun part about this campaign is you don’t necessarily need to put out content that is a visual representation of your product or service. You can use pretty visuals that complement your product or service. For instance, let’s say you provide farm to door fruit and vegetables. You could run a stunning visual campaign on fields and farmers with their stories. Your gifting element could be tied into a giveaway for publicizing your posts on user accounts. 🎁🎁

Best suited for: Build your target audience with data of warm and cold leads you may have collected at an event, webinar or conference. A ready target base means less time and more reach. A cost-effective campaign.

Real-world example: Robin, a company that sells conference room scheduling software and tools took to a campaign where they showcased conference rooms and offices of their biggest clients on social media. “People might not want to look for tech, but they love offices. They love the bars, they love the chairs, they love the lighting, it’s kind of why Pinterest and Instagram exist,” said Ryan MacInnis, Director of Marketing at Robin. This increased their website traffic by 50% and their leads by 20%.

💥 Campaign Idea #5 | Create video content for specific target groups | Build a client base

Create video content for specific target groups | Build a client base

Personalised explainer videos are a great way to connect with your prospective client. If you had a business owner addressing your paint points in a video especially made for you, wouldn’t you be inclined to try their services? You would, right? We know you would!

If you can get a happy client to be in the video with you, it would add a layer of trust and authenticity to what you’re trying to sell. A digital reward card can be an end of the video secret. That way everyone who watched your video to the end can find a gift card 🎁🎁 for his time investment!

Best suited for: A blind reach out - when you don’t know if the prospects you are reaching out to are hot leads or cold, or whether they are leads at all. You can create a personalised video using an online video editor.

💥 Campaign Idea #6 | Share curated content via email with personalised gifts | Nurture existing clients

“If 80 percent of your revenue comes from repeat business, then why are you spending less than 20 percent on the 80 percent revenue contribution?” Joseph Jaffe
Share curated content via email with personalised gifts | Nurture existing clients

ABM is not only about finding new customers, it’s also about nurturing the ones you have. Remember, it is your customers who can be your biggest advertisers. Nothing sells like word of mouth. Even Squid Game marketed best that way!

ABM becomes easier to execute with this audience since you have an idea of what this audience likes and what you can cater to to make their customer experience with you even better. An email promoting a new whitepaper, for instance accompanied by a digital gift card 🎁🎁 for either something that compliments your service, or something personalised for your client, specifically. Sharing a client case study or user story of a client with similar pain points who you were able to provide an effective solution to is another option. Again, choose to send a digital gift card 🎁🎁 that could help make your client’s life a little easier.

Here are some ideas on the kind of content you can create to send out to prospective clients:

Whitepapers: Long-form content created in .pdf having about six-seven pages of content promoting thought leadership on a specific area of subject matter expertise.

Ebooks: Even longer than a whitepaper, having at least ten pages with design elements to keep the content engaging and easily readable.

Case Studies: An excellent way to showcase how your company solved a pain point for your existing customers. Don’t be shy to add testimonials and visual and statistical representations.

Infographics: If too much text is not your thing (or your potential prospect’s), an infographic is a great way to communicate effectively. Heavy on graphics and low on text, this kind of content is easily digestible and has a high recall value.

Best suited for: Existing clients who you haven’t heard from in a while or existing clients who you think have the potential to get you more clients. Use the video to tell them what you’ve been up to and how you are coming up with newer, out-of-the-box solutions every day, that they don’t want to miss out on.

💥 Campaign Idea #7 | Display Advertising Campaigns with scannable gifts | Tap a curious market

Display Advertising Campaigns with scannable gifts | Tap a curious market

To be noticed, you need to put yourself out there. What better way to do it than with a display advertising campaign? With technology so readily available, use it to your advantage and run tech-powered ad campaigns.

Imagine this - you’re a business selling services whose most significant customers are kids in college. So you run a display ad campaign in university areas showcasing your product and have a scannable QR code that gives every person who signs up for a free demo a coffee gift card. 🎁🎁 ☕☕

Best suited for: The tech-savvy generation (though, in all fairness, COVID has made us all familiar with QR Codes). A target group that is young enough to engage with tech voluntarily, be excited about a gift but still be able to afford your service.

Real-world example: In a bold move, Intridea, a company providing mobile and web services and working in the data and visualization space, wanted to land a gig with Ogilvy & Mather. In a super personalized ABM campaign, they took the display ad route and ran a campaign around advertisements on billboards specifically meant for Ogilvy & Mather. What’s gutsier still? They had them installed right outside the Ogilvy offices. Yes, they landed the client.

Ogilvy offices

💥 Campaign Idea #8 | Guest Blog Posts and Prizes for the best ones! | Drive traffic to your website

Guest Blog Posts and Prizes for the best ones! | Drive traffic to your website

Who doesn’t love a good blog? You do, that’s why you’re here!

Up your content game by opening up your resource section on your website to guest posts. Invite people to write about your product after you give them a trial run or have them sign up for a demo version. Create a contest around the most comments, shares or hits. It’s a win-win (literally!).

You get great content because everyone writing wants to win, and the ones who charm your socks off (or the socks of the readers) takes home a fun redeemable voucher for a gift or an experience! 🎁🎁

Best suited for: Businesses that have a new website or a revamped website and are looking to drive traffic. Businesses that believe in selling through quality content.

Budgeted ABM Campaigns

💥 Campaign Idea #9 | Send redeemable gifts from your own brand | Get attention and engage a new account

Send redeemable gifts from your own brand | Get attention and engage a new account

Who doesn’t love a gift? And what better gift when selling your product than a sneak peek to the real thing? The proof of the pudding is in the tasting. So go ahead and don’t be shy to get prospective customers to dig into your pudding and get a taste of the services you offer along with your product.

Sending a redeemable gift card 🎁🎁 from your own brand assures that the client will experience your service first hand. This essentially gives you two opportunities to persuade the client to come on board, at the cost of one.

Best suited for: Prospective clients. Sometimes, you can gather intel about clients with similar needs from existing clients. There’s a good chance that your clients have talked about your product. With you engaging in such a strategy by giving these prospects the chance to use your product first-hand, you will be running with a head start.

Real-world example:

redeemable gifts examples

💥 Campaign Idea #10 | Send a redeemable gift card for a bakery |Welcome and Onboard a new client

Send a redeemable gift card for a bakery |Welcome and Onboard a new client

You know how you always carry some cake or bread to a new home? Wouldn’t it be nice to welcome a new client into your home, in this case your business, with a digital voucher to a cake or bread of their choice?

We said this earlier and we will again, ABM is not a tool meant only to fish for new clients. It’s a tool to nurture relationships and build your business - with both old clients and prospects alike. A gesture like this would certainly make a new client feel welcome and for your business to become a first thought to go to when presented with a choice in the future.

Best suited for: Any new client you on-board. This campaign can happily be a one to one campaign, and will be easy breezy with the options Xoxoday offers you with bakeries around the world! 

💥 Campaign Idea #11 | Send a gift to inspire more gifting ideas |Introduce old clients to what’s new

Send a gift to inspire more gifting ideas |Introduce old clients to what’s new

Have you come up with something new, fun and interesting at your company? Would you like the world to experience it? Well, then turn it into an ABM Campaign!

Reach out to old and existing clients you haven’t heard from in a while and share what’s new. Nope, not just on an email or a flyer. Not too many people are going to read that. Send them a taste of it, and the option to gift 🎁🎁 your product further for more rewards! Sounds fun, no? We love it too!

Best suited for: Clients who have been with you a while but do not engage with the whole plethora of services you offer, or may not be aware of the newer features and aspects of your services.

ABM Social Media Campaigns

💥 Campaign Idea #12 | Use LinkedIn to run targeted ads | Reach mid-high level executives

Use LinkedIn to run targeted ads | Reach mid-high level executives

LinkedIn profile information is an effective way to identify and put together a target group. LinkedIn allows you to create ads based on industry, job role, seniority, and geographic location. So, let’s say you have some killer content aimed at marketing executives. Look for heads of marketing in industries you service and run targeted ads. You could even choose to show the ad to a pre-curated list of companies that you might have.

Best suited for: Business professionals with LinkedIn accounts who use the platform regularly and spend some time on it.

💥 Campaign Idea #13 | Partner with Influencers to sell and gift | Target young clients

 Partner with Influencers to sell and gift | Target young clients

All influencers have created their niches. In them, you find a curated list of target audiences. Choose an influencer (or a thought leader) whose ethos matches that of your brand. Engage in an ABM campaign where you can use their reach to reach out to thousands of followers.

Go live on their instagram account, for instance and give away digital gift cards to the most involved participants 🎁🎁. In case you’re collaborating with a thought leader, you could even try and get one attendee to have a one on one session with the leader.

Best suited for: Startup Founders, Entrepreneurs, Small Businesses - GenX and the Millennials who are looking to find their own, make their own space in the business world. Those who are not shy of using technology to help them make it big.

Non-Traditional ABM Campaigns

💥 Campaign Idea #14 | Use reward powered surveys | Understand your market

Use reward powered surveys | Understand your market

Running surveys are a great way to understand your market, figure out pain points, and to work on what people want and need. From time to time, for your product to be relevant, running surveys is important. They even serve as databases for future campaigns!

The thing about surveys though, is that not too many people are inclined to giving it time. So how do you make it worth their while? Incentivizing completing the survey by integrating rewards is a good strategy to adopt.

Best suited for: Businesses developing a product or an update. Businesses looking to stay relevant. 

Real-world example: SurveyMonkey helps scale surveys, making access to target audiences easier and taking surveys farther. Xoxoday has partnered with SurveyMonkey to integrate rewards into the surveys sent out, and the same is being implemented by various businesses. You could access the list of possible rewards here - Xoxoday Rewards for SurveyMonkey.

💥 Campaign Idea #15 | Transcend boundaries | Engage and convert across geographies

Transcend boundaries | Engage and convert across geographies

The world is shrinking, and companies based in towns and obscure sites are servicing clients all over the world. This is absolutely great! But these companies face challenges when looking to expand their customer base or incentivize the use of their product. Standing out among the competition can only happen when you have more to offer. An ABM campaign where you can identify the contacts you want to nurture into accounts bolstered with meaningful rewards can help you stand head and shoulders among the rest. Doing it from where you are can help with the budget and consequently RoI. Services like Xoxoday allow you to do just that. Expand your reach with a click of a button.

Best suited for: Businesses based in one country having clients but not as many offices all over the world. Businesses looking to test foreign markets before expansion. 

Real-world example: Freshworks is an Indian company that has managed to list itself on NASDAQ. Their teams in India were looking after operations internationally. They were facing problems in incentivizing the use of their solutions globally for lack of reach to their customers through a reward program or currency conversion issues among others. Xoxoday helped with reward integration so they could send out rewards transnationally, hassle-free. This helped bolster their presence and business further.

Tips on choosing the right gifts 🎁🎁

  • Choose a gift card or an experience best suited for your target. If that means choosing different gift cards (of the same value) for different people in your target group, it’s okay. Xoxoday makes it as easy like Sunday morning to execute that!
  • Choose a reward that will always remind the recipient of you. Attaching a sentimentality to what you send - whether in the thought itself or as an experience will help with that. For instance, sending a regular, high ticket client a candlelight dinner voucher for an anniversary. 🍷🍷🥗🥘🫕🍝
  • Choose rewards that you believe your target group wouldn’t ordinarily indulge in themselves. This is an excellent tip to keep in mind when your target group is high-level executives.
  • When your target group is young customers, choose rewards that may be life-essentials to them but can help them save a few dollars for something else. Like a coffee voucher, say?
  • Send out time-appropriate rewards. For instance, a coupon for a bottle of wine around Christmas or a grocery store voucher around Thanksgiving. 🎄🎄🤶🧑‍🎄🎁

Talk about it

While the whole and soul of an ABM campaign is targeted and personalized marketing, it’s essential to make it known that you as a business are engaging in fun activities. Promote your ABM campaigns on social media with lots of visual and audiovisual content. Create a buzz around the incredible ideas you come up with and encourage more people to talk about them by making them wacky! Tag the people you’ve run campaigns for, especially the key decision-makers you’ve worked hard to convert to customers. Everyone likes the world to know they’re special. So encourage them to get vocal about how you made them feel special, and you never know, you may just have a bunch of new customers hoping to feel the same way!

Explore more about how you can make Account-based Marketing fun!
Manoj Agarwal

Manoj Agarwal

Manoj Agarwal is the Co-Founder and CPO at Xoxoday. He is an MBA from IIM Kozhikode comes with 14 years of experience in building companies, technology, product, marketing, & business excellence.