By Jennifer Shore

Account-based marketing has been a growing trend for today's B2B marketing professionals. By aligning both sales and marketing teams with the same goals and objectives, we see our tech stacks evolve for better execution.

Marketo has account-based marketing functionality, giving marketers and sales teams alike the capability of running successful account-based marketing campaigns.

When getting started, there are three core areas you should focus on setting up: target named accounts, engagement campaigns, and results measurement. 

Here are three tips to help you get Marketo set up for success.

1. Define Your Named Accounts

Creating the audience that you are going to be targeting is crucial. When researching your target audience, sync with different people in your company to get a full understanding of your ideal customer profile (ICP). Marketing, sales, customer success, and product departments all have great insights into customers. With the proper brainstorming, you will be able to hone your ICP. Once you define your personas, you can create your named account lists for marketing and sales. 

Here are some attributes to include when creating your named account list:

  • Named Account: Named account’s name
  • People: Number of people attributed to named account
  • Pipeline: Sum of all the opportunities in your CRM that are not closed won or closed lost
  • Open Opportunities: All opportunities in your CRM that are not closed won or closed lost
  • Domain: Named account’s domain (URL for the company)
  • Industry: Type of industry attributed to your accounts
  • Revenue: The company’s annual revenue (if known)
  • Employees: Number of employees attributed to a named account
  • Account Score: Aggregate of lead scores from multiple leads to provide a score at an account level
  • City: Named account’s city
  • State/Region: Named account’s state or region
  • Country: Named account’s country 
  • Created Date: Date the named account was created
  • Account Owner: Owner of the specified account 
  • Account Team Member: Member of a group of stakeholders that work together on specific accounts

Ready to deliver valuable, relevant content and nurture targeted relationships  with ABM? Check out this guide.

Once you have identified your accounts with the necessary fields, it’s time to upload the list to Marketo. Create a CSV file with all the accounts’ pertinent information and use Marketo’s import feature to import your list into the system. Note that if these accounts already live in your system, the system will deduplicate based on the domain name. Once you create the account list in Marketo ABM, the accounts will be available for building smart lists and web campaigns.

2. Drive the Funnel with Engagement

With the accounts uploaded, you’re just about ready to drive engagement. Work with sales to break down the personas within a company. Sales leaders have a vast understanding of champions and decision-makers. Together, you will be able to come up with a solid list of prospects. Although you sell to an account, it’s the people you want to target and engage. Personas allow your targeting to be more precise and drive engagement with the right people.

Named accounts and personas will be available in Marketo to use as filters and triggers, allowing for hyperfocus on your targets when creating an email, audience target lists, and dynamic web content. You can set up multi-channel campaigns that speak a personalized message to your prospects.

3. Results and Success

Marketo ABM has a great set of reporting features built into its dashboard. To find out if your ABM campaigns are a success, you want to set up KPIs that will allow you to see how the funnel is functioning. You definitely want to look at “deals closed” and the time it took to go from named account to closed, but you also want to look at:

  • Account Engagement: How many of the accounts you’re targeting are engaged with your campaigns?
  • Lead Engagement: Who specifically from the engaged accounts is engaged? Do you have a champion or decision-maker taking action? Or merely an employee who may not have any pull in the company?
  • Meetings Booked: How many of the engaged accounts have booked meetings with sales?
  • Opportunities Created: How many named accounts are now in opportunity stages?

As marketers, we look into many metrics. Understanding the revenue funnel allows you to set up the revenue cycle model in unison with your ABM features.

If you are not using ABM marketing techniques today, you should reassess your entire B2B sales and marketing strategy and execution efforts. The setup of the ABM tools available is crucial and will help with a lot of the heavy lifting.

Learn how SmartBug generated a 6,800% increase in email marketing traffic using  Marketo and inbound marketing tactics.


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Let’s talk about your organization, your goals, and how SmartBug® can help you achieve them with an account-based marketing strategy with Marketo. Click here to get the conversation started.

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Jennifer Shore

About the author

Jennifer Shore was formerly the Director of Marketing and a Seattle-based writer who has received numerous awards for her work. In her role at SmartBug, she is responsible for the development, execution, and optimization of the high-growth lead funnel, nurturing, and customer acquisition. Read more articles by Jennifer Shore.

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