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Account-Based Sales Sounds Important But is it for You?
March 10th 2022
Account Based Sales
account-based sales development
The concept of account-based sales is gaining popularity. New age founders and sales reps are keen on implementing account-based targeting in their organization. Organizations that adopt the account-based sales model have transformed their resource management, revenue cycle, sales process, and much more. Owing to its benefits, most organizations are adopting account-based selling. But do you know if it is relevant to you?

In this blog, we'll cover how to identify the relevance of account-based selling for your organization. We'll also look at the factors that influence the outcomes of account-based sales development.

Table of content

  • Brief on B2B SaaS GTM Model
  • Must-have Touch-points in Account-Bases Sales Process
  • Guide to Building Account-Based Sales Development Tech Stack
  • Is Account-Based Sales Development Relevant to You?
  • Factors Influencing Account-Based Sales Outcomes
  • Closing Thoughts

Brief on B2B SaaS GTM Model

B2B SaaS go-to-market (GTM) models can range from a no-touch, direct transactional approach to personalized, consultative sales strategies. The GTM approach determines the hiring of your sales team, the technology stack, and your overall demand generation approach. Account-based sales development (ABSD) has been an emerging model in recent years. It is the process of developing qualified leads into target accounts in a target addressable market through proactive, multi-touch campaigns.

Must-have Touch-points in Account-Bases Sales Process

The account-based sales process is a journey, not a destination. If you are early in the journey, we recommend you look at the process in three phases:

  • Is it right for you?
  • Do you have the appropriate tech stack?
  • How do you start?

Building the Touch-points

The touch patterns for prospecting may vary depending on the stage of the company, the industry, the role of the targeted persona, the teams' capabilities, your product or service's market fit, etc. Touch-points give you a starting point, not the perfect solution. You need to test, edit, and customize based on your market. Let's look at the must-have touch-points and patterns for new sales development teams.

Outbound vs Inbound Touches

Outbound and inbound touch patterns will have different structures. Inbound outreach focuses on speed and frequency — higher touch. Outbound outreach focuses on personalization and nurturing — strategic and methodical—both kinds of prospecting focus on adding value to prospects.

Outbound – Categorized by Account Tiers

Calculating the potential deal lifetime value of a prospect is essential before engaging them. Segmenting prospects based on the potential deal value helps allocate your time and resources better. You can follow the Pareto Principle to personalize 20% of the emails and use 80% of templates. To optimize the sales cadence, you can include 20% manual touch-points and 80% automation.

Inbound – Segmented by Lead Source

The cadence changes based on the source of inbound leads. For example, the lead from a direct source like "demo request" will have a shorter and more direct approach. However, a lead acquired from "downloading a whitepaper" will require a more extended touch pattern and more nurturing. There is potential interest when a lead is sourced from an indirect source, but you need to personalize, nurture, and add value through your outreach.

Personalization

It is primarily focused on high-value accounts. But how do you personalize? You can remember these three areas:

  • Company level personalization, i.e., industry, geography, size, etc.
  • Personal level personalization i.e., challenges associated with the titles
  • Individual-level personalization, ie., through a blog, social media post, common school/university, same hometown, among others connections that add value to your conversation

Guide to Building Account-Based Sales Development Tech Stack

Your tech stack drives better outcomes from your sales development efforts. The modern approach is to generate a significant pipeline with prospects who will purchase, renew, and expand the scope. The sales tech stack may differ based on the stage of the company. But here's what you need to know before building your account-based sales development tech stack.

CRM & Marketing Automation

The hygiene of your CRM and the lead quality for marketing automation are critical factors for your sales tech stack. The CRM simplifies the lead management for all users. It also ensures every user can access the same prospect information all the time. You can reach out to prospects with precision and automation. You can align the sales and marketing efforts seamlessly.

Sales Engagement Platform

The sales engagement tool is the most dense and essential within the sales landscape. It is designed to maximize account-based sales development by leveraging multi-channel communication. Instead of using all channels at once, you can create a sequence over a specific period.

Data Enrichment

Your outbound sales efforts depend on the quality of the data and its hygiene maintenance. The sales team requires accurate data that doesn't need further verification to leverage multi-channel communication. Data enrichment solutions help in automatically updating the contact and account details leading to increase productivity at scale.

Routing

Account-based sales development requires clearly defined rules of engagement. They ensure that the reps are productive and provide a personalized experience to their prospects. A routing tool helps in pre-seeding your target accounts into your CRM. It further helps route leads to appropriate SDR and/or account executives.

Signals or Intent Data

Account-based selling requires proactive identification, contacting, and converting the ideal prospective customers. The accounts are closed at a higher rate and are more likely to renew or expand the scope of the relationship. Intent data applications help your sales team with signals about the accounts searching for solutions to their challenges. They help in identifying prospects that are most likely to relate to the value proposition of your product or service.

Sales Enablement

Consistency and discipline are essential elements of a successful account-based sales model. Sales enablement involves sharing resources or starting conversations around the challenges of your target audience. It helps in creating different communication for different target segments. It also establishes a playbook on how the sales stack can empower the process.

Is Account-Based Sales Development Relevant to You?

Account-based sales development may continue gaining popularity, but it is not relevant to every organization. Let's look at a step-by-step guide to determining if account-based selling will accelerate your growth.

Source: Sales Source

Factors Influencing Account-Based Sales Outcomes

There are five primary factors that impact account-based sales outcomes. They're mentioned in the infographic above but let's get into more details.

Average Selling Price (ASP)

It is the average value of closed-won deals. High ASP transactions justify the complexity of an account-based sales process. For recurring revenue transactions, account-based sales development increases the cost of customer acquisition. The higher the ASP, the more efficient you are with an account-based sales development approach.

Length of the Sales Cycle

The sales cycle length determines the time it takes to close a deal. It is measured from the first meeting till the contract booking. Short sales cycles don't have the scope of including multiple people to close the deal. It may risk the time to close the deal and frustrate your customers. On the other hand, longer sales cycles require nurturing and multi-channel outreach. The deals may move forward, backward, or in any other direction. Account-specific content from marketing and sales development increase the scope of nurturing. It covers the sales team from routine follow-ups.

Market Maturity

Market maturity is the level of awareness for your product or service. It is about are you solving new, niche problems or competing against existing, known challenges. As a rule of thumb, the more niche your solution, the more resources you need to nurture and educate your prospects. You need to explain to them how you solve their challenges.

Your prospects may not be proactive in searching for a solution like yours. Since it's not a traditional product or service, they first need to be educated. Account-based sales development helps in finding appropriate channels to build awareness.

Target Addressable Market (TAM)

TAM is the total market or universe of companies that could be your customers. It impacts your go-to-market model by dictating the breadth vs depth. Account-based sales provide the precision to define the TAM for the sales outreach. It helps in maximizing the conversion rate within the identified target.

Stakeholders Involved to Reach Customers

The number of customer stakeholders refers to the people involved from the customer's side from approaching closing a deal. You can use an account-based selling approach to deliver the value proposition to every stakeholder. It helps maximize their support chances and minimise the chance of blocking a sale.

In Conclusion

Account-based sales development isn't relevant to every organization. But if you have the factors influencing account-based sales outcomes are in place, it can accelerate the process from lead generation to conversion. Your results may vary depending on the elements. But if account-based sales is relevant to you and if you have included a multi-touch pattern along with a powerful sales stack, it can boost your revenue generation.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Richa Sharma
Content Marketer
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Richa Sharma
Content Marketer
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