Increase B2B Conversions Using Programmatic ABM

Increase B2B Conversions Using Programmatic ABM

Account based marketing (ABM) is a focused strategy that blends sales and marketing efforts to reach high potential B2B customers. However, many brands struggle with achieving the level of personalization and automation needed for effective ABM at scale. Thankfully, there is a solution: programmatic ABM. Using automated buying tactics, brands can serve targeted ads to thousands of highly segmented B2B consumers within target organizations using technology and data for personalization. 

Why ABM?

B2B marketing has historically emphasized quantity of leads generated first (Marketing Qualified Leads), with quality to follow (Sales Qualified Leads). Unfortunately, this method has led to 79% of leads never becoming customers, not to mention wasted media dollars. The account-based approach instead focuses on decision makers in target companies rather than mass outreach. By doing this prequalification, the sales funnel becomes shorter and every customer touchpoint is more intentional and personalized. This is why 77% of marketers believe ABM is their top driver of sales and marketing success. 

Zeroing In On the Target

Emarketer data shows that one key barrier to successful ABM is the inability to efficiently and effectively personalize marketing at scale.  We know this is a critical issue to solve as, 40% of company executives in e-commerce report that personalization directly affects their sales and company revenues.” Once you have your ideal customer profile nailed down, how can you make sure you are reaching these individuals?  Can you reach them at scale, with personalization and within your given budget? Here’s where programmatic activation comes in.

Programmatic ABM: Enabled by Technology

Programmatic advertising automates the ad buying process. Just because you are targeting individual business accounts, you don’t have to have massive teams calling or emailing accounts one by one to succeed. With proper campaign segmentation, you can tailor ads to feel highly specific and relevant to individuals within these companies. AI-powered creative learning takes this one step further by determining which combination of imagery and copy will be most effective for different audience segments and adjusting in real time. Programmatic and AI also allow agility and flexibility across channels. You can take a social ad and run it on digital or test a top performing display video on CTV – all while being confident your media spend is serving ads to real, qualified decision makers. 

Activation: First-Party First

When available, campaigns should start with leveraging your existing CRM data. Activate against this high value pool of leads who have already shared their information with you via content downloads, newsletter sign-ups, or other acquisition activities. Carefully segment these individuals so you can serve highly relevant and personalized ads to them based on their industry, level of seniority, interests, geography, etc. Work with a programmatic agency to activate these segments across various digital channels and media publishers. Track user behavior and data trends, then use AI tools to create lookalike audiences to expand the targeting pool.

To expand further, strategically incorporate third party data. Various data partners can be tapped to reach decision makers across digital channels. Keep in mind that with third party data in particular, it is important to have a smart targeting strategy. 

Start by refining your audience. Yes, you want to achieve scale and pack the lead funnel for your sales force, but the way to do that effectively and efficiently is by ensuring you understand what the ideal customer looks like. Your cost per lead may be higher when you narrow the targeting parameters, but you can expect a greater return by reaching audiences with the highest potential lifetime value and reducing wasted hours sifting through unqualified leads. Layer your targeting with firmographic, job title, and seniority parameters that indicate a high potential account. Look at your best customers  – what do they have in common? Segment your target personas into specific buckets so you can tailor your creative and messaging accordingly – adding the personalization now expected by B2B buyers.

Some targeting tactics for B2B accounts to consider are: 

  • Intent targeting to identify individuals and organizations who are actively searching for a particular topic or solution
  • NAICS job title targeting to reach specific job titles or organizations 
  • IP/Geo-Targeting to target specific business locations or industry events
  • Social targeting by skill/title/industry/location across platforms

Using programmatic activation with a digital partner allows brands to reach these highly sought after audiences with efficiency of both budget and time. 

B2B Channel Strategy: Time to Diversify?

Companies are placing the highest investment for their ABM strategies into digital, with the majority of spend occurring on social media, paid search and e-newsletters. These are all key ways to reach buyers, however, other channels such as programmatic display, CTV and audio are gaining more share of wallet year over year. Consider some of these more untapped spaces to allow your brand voice to be heard without competing with the noise. 

When choosing your channel strategy, don’t put all your efforts into one high-performing channel, such as LinkedIn. Instead, activate ads across a variety of channels based on the media consumption habits of your target audience and other behavioral insights. Use data-informed programmatic placements to meet the audience wherever they are active online.

To determine the best channel mix, it’s critical to build a cycle of testing and learning into your measurement strategy. This enables ongoing learning and optimization to improve the lead nurturing process by identifying what is working and what isn’t. Ask questions and test various tactics to find answers so your brand avoids stagnancy and reduced efficiency in the sales cycle.

Key Takeaways

  • Account-based marketing doesn’t have to be tedious. Taking a programmatic approach enables efficiency and scale for brands with large target account pools.
  • Refine targeting criteria and segment key audience groups to personalize creative accordingly. 
  • Capitalize on your first party data, then expand reach with high quality third party data to reach verified decision makers.
  • B2B brands can benefit from an omni-channel media approach and .considering non-traditional B2B media placements

Start reaching hundreds to thousands of B2B leads today by working with Coegi to build a programmatic ABM strategy. Contact us at info@coegipartners.com to schedule a discovery call today. 

2021-22 Consumer Trends: What They Mean For Your Digital Marketing

7 Trends for 2022

Consumer brands must constantly be getting to know their evolving audiences in order to personalize digital messaging and strategy across channels. In the US, “over 3 in 5 consumers say they have changed their shopping routines,” according to a YouGov report. 

So, CPG brands, it’s time to meet your new customer. Here are some of the key consumer trends for 2022 and how you can tailor your digital strategies to capitalize on them. 

7 Trends to Consider

  • Customer first approach
  • Brand loyalty risk
  • Omni-channel activation
  • Social commerce dominance
  • B2C to D2C
  • Smart technology adoption
  • Influencer growth

What do these trends mean?

Customer first approach

Putting customers first is no longer an added value proposition, it is an expectation. Household brands are finding unique ways to engage consumers and insert their brand into the consumer’s story. A Netscribes article quotes that brands must, “go beyond the commodity to fuel engagement and advocacy by delivering context-specific interactions at the right junctures of the consumer journey.” 

Takeaway: CPG products can’t be treated as commodities anymore. Build a relationship with customers, no matter what your product is. Prioritize 1st party data through loyalty programs to understand where your customers are and better serve them with a custom experience.

Brand loyalty risk

Consumers are more open to trying new brands and have less stringent loyalty to major household brands. A YouGov.com survey showed 71% of grocery shoppers tried a new brand in 2021. Brand names are losing their power among household products as curious consumers are trying new things and preferences shift towards value, price and convenience. 

Takeaway: Use brand awareness campaigns to reach open, younger audiences who are willing to try something new. Engage current customers through various channels to maintain brand favorability and showcase your brand’s value.

“Adults surveyed anticipate that a year from now, they will be shopping in person and online equally.”

Omni-channel activation

Online and mobile purchases are sharing the limelight with brick and mortar. Verizon’s Look Forward study on consumer trends stated, “Adults surveyed anticipate that a year from now, they will be shopping in person and online equally (42%).” Consumers are split between online and brick and mortar shopping, so retailers have to give both channels equal emphasis and ensure they work together smoothly. With e-commerce numbers steadily rising year over year, more traditional brands and retailers must work rapidly to improve the integration of their online stores with every other customer touchpoint. 

Takeaway: Look at your marketing strategy holistically and build touch points with smart retargeting and customized creative to maintain your customers’ attention from the consideration phase to point of purchase. Blend traditional and digital channels across all funnel phases to be at every key customer touchpoint. 

Social commerce dominance

Social commerce is on the rise with platforms such as  Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest adding and testing new in-app shopping features. And for good reason. According to the Global Web Index, 37% of users use social media to research products and brands. Enabling a quick and easy shopping experience lets brands engage customers when they are actively thinking about making a purchase.

Takeaway: Explore different features and tools to utilize social commerce, making it as easy as possible for a customer to add your product to their cart. Consider retargeting engaged social audiences from paid or influencer campaigns with shoppable ads and a seamless in-app purchase process.

Putting customers first is no longer an added value proposition – it is an expectation.

B2C to D2C

More brands are moving to D2C options cutting out the store entirely and connecting directly with customers. Sales numbers are still insignificant, but will continue to rise as, “20% of consumers aged 18-40 years prefer to buy directly from a brand’s website, as opposed to a marketplace or third-party retailer.” 

Takeaway: Use D2C channels to build a loyal following and speak directly with your customer. Build brand equity and loyalty – not just a Shopify store. Use these direct channels to bring your like-minded customer base together creating a sense of community. 

Smart technology adoption

Expect greater adoption of smart technologies in 2022, including voice technology and virtual/augmented reality. These technologies are being refined and retailers are jumping on board due to the abilities for personalized customer experience. Voice shopping and chatbots particularly stand out. The number of voice shoppers is expected to increase by 55% by 2022 and roughly 91% of internet users interact with a chatbot on a daily basis. 

Takeaway: Utilize AI machine-learning to customize the customer experience. Use interactive ad formats and promotional activities to engage the customer and gather more meaningful data. For digital campaigns, use AI-models and tools to predict a customer’s likelihood to purchase, and tailor the creative messaging accordingly. If possible, explore voice shopping applications for your product with smart speakers such as Google Echo and Amazon Alexa. 

Influencer growth

Influencer spend and impact is still on the rise. Social platforms are improving ways for influencers to monetize content and work with brands, which helped pave the way for the social commerce trend mentioned above. In 2022, the influencer market is projected to reach up to $15B

Takeaway: Blend influencer marketing into your media mix model to build authenticity and trust in your brand. Use your media agency to help blend influencers into your holistic digital strategy. Also, consider using influencers for bottom funnel campaigns as well as awareness campaigns.

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