How SaaS businesses can up their ABM game

Estimated reading time
14 minutes
18th September 2023
Author: Team Turtl
Posted in: Sales, Strategy & Planning

Account-based marketing (ABM) is a term being thrown around a lot these days, and for good reason. Marketing and sales professionals identify their perfect match (high-value accounts) and tailor campaigns to fit individual needs, preferences and pain points. (Prince Charming eat your heart out, right?)

By strategically targeting key accounts through personalized engagement, businesses can earn higher conversion rates, increase customer retention – and achieve significant revenue growth.

But as we know, there’s no one-glass-slipper-fits-all strategy when it comes to any type of marketing. Every business is as unique as a pumpkin coach – with different goals, values and customers. Yes, there is a chunk of analysis to do before unleashing your targeted ABM campaigns, but the work is worth it. Before you panic – don’t worry. There are numerous tools out there to make your ABM life easier, and your efforts more effective. See them as your digital fairy godmothers…

ABM tactics can be applied to a variety of business models. Here, we take a more detailed look at how B2B SaaS businesses can use ABM to effectively charm high-value accounts, without any awkward silences…

Is ABM different for B2B SaaS?

It is! Unlike general B2B ABM, account-based marketing for SaaS hones in on companies that can benefit from software solutions. It emphasizes product-centric messaging, focusing on how the SaaS product addresses unique challenges. This is the cornerstone of product-led growth marketing.

Here’s a breakdown of what makes it stand out:

  • Digital-first strategy. B2B SaaS ABM is inherently digital. It thrives on online channels such as email marketing, webinars, content marketing and online product demonstrations. Your goal is to engage your target accounts where they spend a significant portion of their time: the internet.
  • Product-centric approach. Unlike traditional B2B ABM, where the focus might be on broader solutions or services, B2B SaaS ABM is all about showcasing your software’s features and how they directly address specific challenges or opportunities within your target accounts. You’re demonstrating how your SaaS can be the solution they’ve been searching for.
  • Trial-driven approach. Many SaaS companies offer free trials or freemium versions of their software. B2B SaaS ABM often revolves around getting your ideal accounts to sign up for these trials, as it’s a critical step in the customer journey. It’s like letting them test-drive a car before they commit to buying it.
  • Data-led decision making. Data is your compass in B2B SaaS ABM. You constantly measure and analyze metrics such as conversion rates, customer acquisition cost and user engagement to fine-tune your strategy. If something’s not working, you adjust your course based on the data.
  • Long-term relationship focus. The goal isn’t just to make a sale. It’s about building long-term relationships. You’re not in it for the short term; you want your customers to find ongoing value in your software and keep renewing their subscriptions.

B2B SaaS ABM is like a tailored suit – it’s all about precision and personalization. Team it with a digital-first mindset and you’re more likely to win over the companies that are the perfect fit for your SaaS solution.

Tools to help identify ICPs

Ideal customer profiles are a foundational concept in ABM. These profiles represent the characteristics and criteria that define the perfect fit for your service. In the context of ABM, ICPs help you identify and target the most promising accounts. Here are some tools that can make this process easier and more effective:

  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator. This well-known tool helps you identify potential ICPs by searching for specific job titles, industries and company sizes. You can also track key decision-makers’ activities to better understand their needs and preferences.
  • ZoomInfo: ZoomInfo offers a comprehensive database of company and contact information. It enables companies to build detailed ICPs based on firmographics and technographics, helping to identify the right accounts.
  • Clearbit: Clearbit provides data-enrichment services that can enhance your existing leads and accounts. It helps you gather valuable insights on your ICPs, such as company size, technology stack and industry.
  • HubSpot: HubSpot’s CRM and marketing automation tools include features that allow you to define and segment your ICPs. It helps you track interactions and engagement levels to fine-tune your ABM strategy.
  • Pardot: A Salesforce product, Pardot offers lead scoring and grading capabilities. It assists in identifying ICPs by assigning scores based on criteria that align with your ideal customer characteristics.
  • DiscoverOrg: Now part of ZoomInfo, DiscoverOrg offers a vast database for B2B sales and marketing intelligence. It’s a valuable resource for finding ICPs and building detailed target account lists.
  • Datanyze: Datanyze is an intuitive Google Chrome Extension that allows users to access B2B contact information, such as email addresses, direct dial phone numbers and company details, from social media sites such as LinkedIn.
  • Demandbase: Demandbase is an ABM platform that helps companies identify and reach their ICPs through account-level targeting. It provides valuable insights and personalization options for marketing campaigns.
  • Google Analytics: While primarily known for website analytics, Google Analytics can offer valuable data on the characteristics of your existing customers. This information can inform your ICP definition.

Software that maps accounts and identifies specific targets

Data analytics and customer insights help to pinpoint high-potential accounts that align with your ICP. This helps streamline the targeting process for slicker, more effective ABM campaigns.

  • Salesforce offers robust CRM capabilities for tracking and managing accounts. It allows you to segment and categorize accounts, making it easier to identify and target specific ones.
  • Leadfeeder helps ‘turn page views into pipeline’ by tracking website visitors to identify potential target accounts. It also provides insights into their interests and activities.
  • Terminus is an ABM platform that assists in identifying and targeting high-value accounts. It offers features such as account segmentation and personalized messaging.
  • Triblio is an ABM platform that helps to identify and engage high-value target accounts through personalized content and multi-channel campaigns. It offers tools for precise account targeting, content personalization and in-depth analytics to drive more effective and efficient ABM strategies.
  • Vainu is a B2B sales and marketing intelligence platform that provides detailed company data and insights. Vainu continuously updates its data, providing users with real-time insights into companies, industries and market trends, which is invaluable for staying current in fast-paced B2B environments.
  • 6Sense is an ABM platform that uses AI and big data to help B2B companies identify and engage with their ideal target accounts. It provides predictive analytics and behavioral insights, enabling businesses to prioritize and personalize their marketing efforts for maximum impact and improved lead conversion.
  • Google Analytics: Google Analytics can help analyze website traffic and provide insights into which companies are showing interest. This information can guide your target account selection.
  • Segment: Segment is a customer data platform that allows you to collect and manage customer data, helping identify and target accounts based on user behavior and engagement.
  • Bombora: Bombora provides intent data that helps SaaS companies identify accounts actively researching topics related to their solutions, making them prime targets.
  • HubSpot: HubSpot offers lead management tools that help identify and nurture target accounts through lead scoring and segmentation.
  • Demandbase: Demandbase gets another mention – as a dedicated ABM platform that provides account mapping and targeting features, it helps companies focus on high-value accounts through account-level targeting.
  • ZoomInfo: ZoomInfo also gets a second shout-out, as it offers data enrichment services that can help identify target accounts by providing detailed firmographic and technographic information.
  • Madkudu: Madkudu offers predictive lead scoring and account scoring capabilities. It helps SaaS companies prioritize target accounts based on their fit and potential.
  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator: This tool allows you to search for potential target accounts by applying various filters, such as company size, industry, and job titles, on LinkedIn’s vast network. While it can help refine your ICP, it also helps you uncover specific high-value accounts that are a great match for your solution.
  • Turtl: Us again. If you’re producing resource-rich long-form content, Turtl shows you exactly who is reading what, for how long and how many times. Turtl integrates with every leading CRM, meaning you can automate content journeys and lead scoring based on engagement triggers. This is invaluable for marketing operations and identifying exactly who is warming towards buying,

These are just a few software options that provide a compass for companies looking to map out their accounts and pinpoint high-potential target accounts effectively. Choosing the right tech based on your specific needs and goals is crucial for successful account identification and targeting in the B2B SaaS space.

Most solutions offer free trials (usually 7 or 14 days), so make sure to clear out some time in your diary to test them out thoroughly to see which ones fit best with your business, ABM strategy and team. 

Sales and marketing teams need to be involved in these trials (and demos) as they’ll be the ones using these ABM tools and software on a daily basis. Don’t just trial the software – trial the brand’s support team, too.

If providers aren’t providing quality onboarding support, teams may struggle to use them effectively. It’s also a red flag for the level of ongoing support should you take on the tool in the long term. Audition customer success, just as much as the technology itself.

SaaS that supports personalized ABM content

Did you know that you can win 84% more attention with personalization? Here are some ways to personalize your ABM strategy without losing valuable time (or your sanity):

  • Dynamic content tools. We’re not shy about putting ourselves at the top of this list – dynamic, personalized content is a core offering of Turtl technology, with data forming its foundation. How buyers read your documents reveals hugely useful information about their motivations and intent – we track all of this through our Analytics Dashboard. This data and insight can help sales teams focus on the right parts of their offering, lead more relevant conversations, and close deals faster. This insight also helps businesses deliver personalized digital content that actually gets read and forges deeper relationships with audiences.

    This data can also be used to define the dynamic content (such as text, pages, images, charts, videos and tables) of your Turtl Docs to make your personalization pop even more. All you need to do is add personalization tokens. When combined with page rules and information pulled from your chosen data source, Turtl will determine what content gets displayed to your audience. (Pretty nifty, right?) We’re not just talking about swapping in a name or a company logo. We’re talking about tailoring each content piece to the interests and needs of a specific audience segment or individual. At scale.

We could list more ABM benefits until the cows come home but we’ll let our tech do the talking instead: Cover of the guide to using Turtl for ABM

  • Other dynamic content tools. Crazy Egg offers heatmaps and A/B testing for website content. This  helps you understand what content elements resonate most with your target accounts, so you can feed it into your personalized outreach.
  • Content management systems (CMS). For example, WordPress allows you to create and manage personalized content easily. You can use plugins to customize pages for specific accounts.
  • Email marketing platforms such as MailChimp provide segmentation and personalization features, which enable marketers to tailor email content for different target accounts. Dynamic content blocks let you customize messages based on account characteristics.
  • Marketing automation tools. HubSpot has content personalization features that allow you to deliver tailored content to specific contacts within your target accounts. This includes personalized emails and website content.
  • Website personalization tools. Optimizely provides an experimentation platform that lets you personalize website content for different target accounts based on visitor characteristics – ensuring a fully customized experience. |
  • CRM Systems such as Salesforce’s CRM help personalize content and communications based on lead and account information. You can create custom fields and templates for tailored messaging. Salesforce Marketing Cloud Personalization (formerly Interaction Studio) is also available for marketers to automate dynamic offers and content for each customer in real time, using AI-driven 1:1  experiences.
  • Content recommendation engines. Outbrain suggests relevant articles or content pieces based on user behavior. It enhances content personalization on your website.
  • Customer data platforms (CDPs). Segment enables data collection and integration, helping you create a unified view of target accounts for personalized content delivery across various channels.

SaaS to distribute and launch ABM campaigns

Launching and distributing ABM campaigns for B2B SaaS companies demands the right tech stack to streamline the process, ensure personalized outreach, and maximize results.

Here’s a closer look at the software that can assist with this:

Marketing automation platforms

  • HubSpot: HubSpot’s automation features allow B2B SaaS companies to create and manage personalized ABM SaaS campaigns efficiently. It provides tools for email marketing, lead nurturing, and workflow automation.
  • Adobe Marketo Engage: Offers advanced marketing automation for ABM, enabling lead scoring, email marketing and campaign management tailored to target accounts.

Customer relationship management (CRM) systems

  • Salesforce: This  CRM tracks and manages interactions with target accounts, enabling sales teams to align with marketing efforts seamlessly.
  • Pipedrive: A  CRM that provides a visual sales pipeline to prioritize and manage target accounts effectively.

ABM platforms

  • Terminus: A dedicated ABM platform designed to help launch and distribute campaigns. It assists in account segmentation, personalized messaging and account-based advertising.
  • Demandbase: Offers comprehensive ABM solutions, including account identification, targeting, and personalized advertising to engage high-value accounts.

Content marketing SaaS for ABM

  • Turtl. We understand the importance of easy and effective multichannel distribution when it comes to marketing your ABM content. After all, there’s no point in creating highly personalized and engaging digital documents (brochures, newsletters, white papers, digital onboarding materials, case studies, guides, sales proposals, presentations…) if they’re not seen by the right people.
    Turtl’s publishing workflow helps you get your content seen by the right people in the right way by making it easier to get your content noticed across digital channels, including search and social.
    You can also integrate Turtl with leading CRMs, marketing automation, and email platforms, speeding up the content marketing process and helping to generate more leads from your documents.

Email marketing SaaS

  • SendGrid: Facilitates personalized email outreach to target accounts at scale, with features like email templates, automation and analytics.
  • MailChimp: Offers email marketing tools for segmenting, sending and tracking email campaigns to engage with target accounts effectively.

Social media management platforms

  • Hootsuite: Helps companies schedule and manage social media posts, engage with target accounts and monitor social activity.
  • Buffer: Streamlines social media management and scheduling, making it easier to share relevant content and engage with target accounts.

Account-based advertising SaaS

  • AdRoll: Enables account-based advertising by retargeting target accounts with personalized ads across different online platforms. Run display ads, social ads and email ads in one place. “You can’t get this anywhere else”.
  • RollWorks: Provides B2B account-based advertising solutions, helping companies target and engage key accounts with precision.

SaaS for analytics and reporting

  • Google Analytics: Offers insights into campaign performance, helping companies measure the effectiveness of their ABM efforts.
  • Tableau: Assists in visualizing and analyzing data from ABM campaigns, allowing for data-driven decision-making and optimization.

SaaS for webinar and video conferencing tools

  • Zoom: Provides a platform for hosting webinars and virtual meetings, allowing companies to engage target accounts through interactive events.
  • WebEx: Offers industry-leading video conferencing, calling and contact center solutions, facilitating real-time interactions with target accounts.
  • GoToWebinar: A valuable webinar tool that allows for personalized content delivery, real-time engagement and interactive Q&A sessions.

Saas for marketing attribution

  • Adobe Marketo Measure: Helps track and attribute marketing efforts to revenue, allowing businesses to understand the impact of ABM campaigns on their bottom line.

SaaS tools that measure effectiveness

Do you want the good news… or the good news?

The majority of the tools listed above offer in-built analytics, so you won’t have to go through the process of learning to navigate another platform to find out whether your ABM campaigns have worked (or what needs tweaking). Many offer real-time results, so you can edit as you go, helping you hit the mark quicker.

We’re feeling a bit sorry for this section as it’s lighter than its predecessors, so we’re going to dive into the details behind Turtl Analytics (when in Rome, right?).

When it comes to measuring the effectiveness of your ABM content, our dashboards help you to identify what’s being engaged with both across – and within – your Turtl Docs. Use these insights to determine what needs new messaging and what kind of content to continue producing for each of your target accounts. In short, quickly identify what works so you can do more of it. 

Turtl takeaway

Have you heard of these SaaS ABM examples before? If so, how? Did you sign up for a trial…  How did they communicate with you during your trial? Was your content journey personalized? What’s the follow-up like once you’ve completed your trial? How do they engage with you? Do you feel like you can get in touch with them with any questions, as you go? Do you know how to get in touch with them? 

You are their ICP – use your trials as an opportunity to assess their ABM  tactics, and what elements (if any) persuade you to trust and purchase from them.

As you can see, there are a lot of platform choices available for B2B SaaS businesses looking to up their ABM game. While the above list is non-exhaustive, it spotlights some popular options that are worth your time of day.

Our best advice? Carve out time in your diary (sales and marketing teams) to trial these solutions and put them through their paces. Find the time to establish your technology toolkit for identifying, personalizing, distributing and measuring your ABM campaigns. Without it, you’re flying blind, wasting time – and flinging money at the wall.

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