What’s an account-based marketing funnel?

Much like any sales funnel, an account-based marketing (ABM) funnel is the journey a lead goes on from initial interest all the way through to being a paying customer. The key difference with an ABM funnel is that instead of casting a wide net, you’re focusing on a specific account and customer journey.

This also means taking a traditional sales funnel and flipping it on its head. Instead of casting a wide net to start, ABM funnels focus on specific target accounts based on your ideal customer profile and then widen the funnel with more information and lead magnets in relation to your product.

A  successful sales funnel can be measured by both its conversion rate and the number of accounts brought into the funnel. However, an ABM funnel’s success depends almost entirely on whether or not the targeted account converts into a paying customer.

What does an ABM funnel look like?

Flipping the funnel on its head may seem counterintuitive but it makes more sense than you might think. Think of it like choosing quality over quantity. With an ABM approach, you’re looking to convert a smaller number of high-value customers rather than a large volume of smaller accounts that may be harder to convert as a group.

Where a traditional funnel is wide at the top to gather as many leads as possible, an ABM funnel is flipped to be highly focused and targeted at the top.

How a traditional sales funnel and ABM funnel look opposite

Key features of an ABM funnel

One of the core features of ABM is the level of personalization in your marketing efforts. Content and messaging are tailored specifically to each target account, addressing their unique pain points, challenges, and needs. ABM also fosters close collaboration between marketing and sales teams. Marketing provides valuable insights and engagement opportunities, while sales take the lead in converting engaged accounts into customers. This means a much better understanding of your customer base, an increased quality of lead scoring, and more conversions for your team.

ABM is an iterative process. Marketers regularly review and optimize their strategies, incorporating new insights and feedback to enhance their ABM funnel’s effectiveness over time. This focus on analytics, personalization, collaboration between teams, and lead nurturing before and after conversion, means that ABM is an incredibly powerful tool for marketing and sales teams.

How to create an ABM funnel

1. Identify your ideal accounts

Start by identifying the accounts that align with your business goals and have the highest potential for conversion. Consider factors like industry, company size, and revenue. Create a list of these high-value accounts to focus your efforts.

2. Understand your target audience

Dive deep into each account to understand the decision-makers, influencers, and pain points within the organization. Tailor your messaging and content to resonate with their specific needs and challenges. Personalization is key for starting ABM.

3. Craft engaging content

Develop high-quality, personalized content that speaks directly to the needs of your target accounts. This may include whitepapers, case studies, webinars, reports, and ebook creation. Ensure that your content showcases your expertise and addresses the challenges your audience faces.

4. Multichannel outreach

Implement a multichannel l approach to reach your target accounts. This could involve personalized email newsletters, social media engagement, personalized direct mail, and one-on-one outreach. Consistency across channels is crucial to reinforce your message.

5. Measure, analyze, and adjust

Regularly monitor the performance of your ABM funnel. Track engagement, conversion rates, and ROI for each account. Use this data to refine your strategy and adjust your approach as needed. ABM is an iterative process that requires ongoing optimization.

Best practices for an effective ABM  funnel

Building and executing an effective ABM funnel requires careful planning and adherence to best practices. Let’s show you exactly how to start and manage your funnel.

Align sales and marketing teams

Collaboration between your sales and marketing teams is essential. Ensure that both teams have a shared understanding of target accounts, goals, and messaging. Regular communication and feedback loops are crucial.

Define clear ABM goals and objectives

Clearly outline your ABM objectives. Are you aiming for revenue growth, customer retention, or market expansion? Setting specific, measurable, and achievable goals will guide your ABM strategy.

Identify ideal customer profiles (ICPs)

Develop detailed ideal customer profiles that describe the characteristics of your target accounts. This includes industry, company size, pain points, and key decision-makers. Use these profiles to guide your account selection. We show you how to use ABM engagement data to refine ICPs for better results.

Personalize ABM content and messaging

Craft highly personalized content and messaging for each target account. Tailor your communications to address their specific pain points and challenges. Personalization increases engagement and conversion rates.

ABM data analysis

Regularly analyze engagement data to assess the performance of your ABM campaigns. Monitor engagement metrics, conversion rates, and ROI. Use insights to refine your strategy and make data-driven decisions.

ABM automation

Consider using ABM platforms and tools like Turtl to streamline processes, track engagement, and manage campaigns more effectively. ABM automation can help you scale your ABM efforts and make the most of your funnel.

Turtl takeaway

Understanding the ABM funnel and knowing how to create one is essential when considering account-based marketing. Without proper lead scoring, data analytics, and personalization at scale though it can fall flat. Turtl’s psychology-driven platform with a detailed analytics dashboard is perfect for ABM campaigns. Read our guide to see how to deliver better ABM campaigns and scale your activity.

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