Top tips for launching a winning B2B ABX strategy

May 19, 2022
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Defining ABX

ABX is a trending acronym for Account-Based Experience if you haven’t already heard. It signals broader ownership and involvement for the entire customer journey, from marketing to sales to customer success for each specific account. ABX is the next iteration of ABM, or account-based marketing, a philosophical approach and concerted focus on building deep relationships with high-value accounts. It essentially flips the funnel. Instead of just gunning for lead volume and nurturing the highest quality ones, you ensure all your leads are high quality from day one. 

Whereas ABM is all about marketing, ABX is about customer experience and providing value. It engages business buyers with relevant messages delivered in a trusted way, throughout the entire lifecycle, on their terms. ABX leverages intent data insights to find the right moments to engage in the most impactful way with both prospects and existing customers at top accounts. 

At its core, Account-Based Experience is just about understanding who your ICP is, how each identified account is tiered and segmented, and who each persona is on the buyer committee. This knowledge allows you to successfully communicate custom messages at the right time throughout the whole customer journey. 

Criteria for Success

ABX does not have to be an all-or-nothing approach. An ABX plan should augment and compliment the rest of your marketing, which is why company-wide support of ABX is essential to success. Many companies are now building ABX leadership teams or centers of excellence to drive programs and garner critical company-wide buy-in with regular communication, shared KPIs, reporting, and frequent check-ins. 

  • Marketing and Sales Alignment – open communication and joint planning are essential for ABX success.
  • Marketing and Sales Tools – it’s critical to have the right Martech stack fully integrated to drive timely, relevant communication with your prospects.
  • Content – a well-developed asset library is the fuel of ABX engagements; you will need various pieces that serve TOFU, MOFU, and BOFU stages and several buyer personas.
  • Actionable Data – robust, accurate intent data on buying team member activity and account engagement activity are critical to serving up content that drives action.

Getting Started

While developing a playbook is critical to having an executable ABX plan, you don’t have to boil the ocean to get started. When designing your account-based experiences (ABX), focus your energy and resources on best-fit accounts with the highest revenue potential for your business. These target accounts require focused outreach from your sales and marketing teams to turn them into lifelong customers and advocates for your business.

  1. Begin by ensuring team alignment on which accounts, audiences, and segments to focus on first. There are three critical steps in determining your accounts and audiences. 
    • Develop Your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)
    • Identify Your Personas
    • Create Target Account List (TALs) that include the personas at your ICP2
  2. Next, you will want to define your business objectives, marketing goals, and media KPIs. Defining your goals is an essential part of ABX program. Your goals should fall into three main categories and dictate campaign planning and execution:
    • Awareness goals: More companies than ever invest in digital advertising to grow brand visibility and awareness
    • Nurture goals: Converting a buyer after one offer is the exception, not the rule
    • Acquisition goals: Campaigns and offers that fall under this category include CTAs for demos or any other means of attracting new customers
  3. Now it’s time to create meaningful conversations with your identified customers, using useful, usable, and relevant content. Content is the necessary fuel for a successful ABX strategy. Understanding your current content library, how each asset fits into the content funnel, and how to personalize your content collateral based on your ICP and personas will improve your customer engagement and accelerate your sales cycles.
  4. Double-check to make sure you have the proper tooling in place. There was a time when we used to say that we were technology agnostic at ROI•DNA, but certain ABX and revenue acceleration platforms are now able to drive such strong results that we can’t be the best ABX agency partner to our clients without them.
    • Drift, 6sense, and Mutiny work together to provide real-time, intent data-informed experiences that feel hyper-personalized and help our clients achieve exceptional results
    • In addition to these valuable partners, it’s essential to have an integrated CRM such as Hubspot and a sales engagement platform like Salesloft
  5. Measure your success to grow.
    • Like all marketing and sales investments, you can’t operate ABX without analytics and data visualization tools — we prefer Google for ease of use and intuitive connectivity
    • It’s crucial to report towards account-based metrics like engagement, content views, viewability, deal size, pipeline velocity, target account coverage, and revenue team activity metrics, including outreach numbers

Reaping the benefits of Revenue Acceleration 

Creating a full-lifecycle ABX strategy may seem a little daunting at first — some concerns we frequently hear include:

  • ABX is too expensive
  • We don’t know where to start with ABX
  • We don’t have the team or resources
  • We are not sure which technology to use. 

The flip side is that the competition is rapidly investing in and becoming more sophisticated in their ABX efforts every day. It is becoming increasingly risky not to move towards an ABX-centered marketing approach. Because ABX programs put the customer at the center of all marketing efforts, it successfully accelerates funnel progression and the likelihood of engagement, aka it accelerates revenue. We think ABM and ABX could simply be known as Revenue Acceleration programs. The sooner your teams get started with a focused ABX program, the sooner you can reap the benefits of revenue acceleration.  

Hit us up with any questions at all, like seriously any. Or, to receive your ABX readiness assessment to successfully launch your account-based experience marketing engine, ping our ABM swat team here

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