How to Make ABM More Personal for Large & Small Accounts

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode, Dan Sanchez talks with Kristina Jaramillo who is the president of Personal ABM. Kristina shared her approach for how to get the attention of large accounts through a high customized and personal approach as well as some ideas for companies targeting small accounts.

Yeah, welcome back to BTB growth. I'm danSanchez with sweet fish media and I'm here with Christina jaramillo, who isthe president of personal A B. M. Christina, welcome to the show. Thanksfor having me dan, I appreciate it and I was excited to talk to Christinabecause she focuses on my kind of favorite version of A B. M. But beforewe break into it, I wanted to kick it off, just dive right into the questionsas far as how you define a B in and in and of itself because there's lots ofdifferent definitions of their, some people define it broadly, some peopledefine it narrowly and there's all kinds of things in between. SoChristina, let's jump into like how do you define it? What is it, what is itnot? Okay, so to me, A B M should be defined as a business strategy,focusing on fixing the challenges and revenue leaks that an organizationmight have, it's about getting more tier one I. C. P accounts that canprovide more maximum lifetime value and greater revenue growth as well asgrowing existing accounts. But as you mentioned, a BMS definitions kind ofall over the place. I think people are just taking in different directions andtrying to fit where they think it fits and so it's gotten diluted and I thinkmore recently the term A B. M has kind of been synonymous with the technologythat enables it. So we're doing A B. M. Because we have demand base or we havesix cents or we have terminus or whatever. A BM technology and I thinkthose tech tools are seen as, you know, as a silver bullet, which is not thecase. And so because of that, I think a lot of companies are treating A B. M asmarketing as usual, but just with shiny new tools, they're not focused on how AB. M should be that business strategy to fix those problems beyond justpipeline. So it's become about technology and tactics. Like last acouple of weeks ago I was talking to CMO of a channel sales and tech companyand you know, her Ceo had introduced us because I shared with him that Ibelieve their a B. M. program was missing 60% of the market because Iknew that they were using six cents. So when I got on the call with this CMO, Iasked her automatically, what is your A B. M strategy, what does it look like?And she started off by mentioning their textract, she said we use outreach weuse and we use six cents marcato zoom info. So basically she was just talkingabout the tools they were using and she even mentioned that they were a casestudy for six months because they were using the platform correctly. And to meusing six cents platform correctly, it's different from a B. M effectivestrategy. So what I really heard in her conversation was similar to a stat thatI saw from I T S M A. I believe it was, it said about two thirds of a BMorganizations are not seeing significant business impact orimprovement with their A B. M. Program. So I think she kind of fits into thatbecause they might be treating it again as marketing unusual and just kind ofusing tools and saying that they're doing it. And she also mentioned thatthey were having a lot of deals going to their safer competitor, morecomfortable choice, which was Salesforce. And I think because theywere treating A B. M. As a technology versus a strategy, that was the problemthat that was, you know, exacerbated by the fact. So I think it comes down tothe fact that a lot of people think of technology as fitting as a B. M. Andthe tech being synonymous. But it's only one piece of the puzzle. To me, AB. M. Is not about campaigns and marketing unusual as usual. Like youstart off strategic when you start campaigns, but the minute you focus ontech and then just those massive campaigns it's going to become tactical.Um and then you're not be able to get accounts to revenue. And you know, Ithink A B. M. Should really be focused on how you're going to get those tierone accounts to revenue, especially the ones that are disengaging with salesand marketing and put a strategy for getting those, you know, accounts torevenue. Technology just like content message is just a piece of the puzzle.Yeah, I do find it's an interesting case that I don't know there's twodifferent approaches that I've seen and...

I've had this with I I have theseconversations I t most of all because I almost feel like some people are like,no, we decide what we want to have happen and then we go and find tools toaccomplish that versus I'm actually going to reverse a lot as I find outwhat most of the tools can accomplish and then based on what's possible. I goin reverse engineer what I think will work best two different approaches. Ifind that I like to just kind of start with what's possible and then kind ofmap a strategy to that. So I can kind of See them like using something likesix cents and trying to get the most out of it. But at the same time I cancertainly lead you astray because it can lead you doing things that youhadn't necessarily thought or that are actually going to lead you to yourrevenue goal. So that makes a ton of sense. And maybe maybe it was betterthan what they did before and just mass advertising across a huge, huge segmentor persona, right? So at least they're focusing in on a few more accounts, butat the same time, hopefully they're tracking towards revenue, otherwise itcould be a massive miss, right? And I'm sure across big organizationsimplementing these A B. M. Campaigns, it's it's it's hard to know if whatyou're doing is all mapping towards revenue, but I'd love to hear more likethere's a lot of people that like to take the the one too many approach andthe one too few approach, but where I know you specialize in Is in thatpersonal 1 - one approach. So I'd love to hear more about what you guys aredoing that personal A B. M as far as those 1 to 1 approaches. I know we havea few things we've done at sweet fish, but I'm always looking to hear abouthow do we make marketing more personal? It's one thing to personalize it, butit's a whole different thing. It's like a totally it's a massive jump away fromjust personalization to be actually personal. Right? So what are the thingsthat you guys are working on that you found works well there. Yeah,absolutely. I it's interesting that you mentioned personalization beingdifferent than being personal because I see a lot of people confusing the wordsand to me, personalization is maybe adding industry relevance or companyrelevance or role relevance or maybe even someone's name in a campaignversus getting to know what's what matters to them as a person, whatmatters to them as part of a smaller team with an organization and whatmatters to them as an organization as a whole that's that's to me is personal.And with a B. M, the one too few one too many and 1 to 1 it needs to be abalance and I feel like people play really well, maybe in the one too fewand one too many. And that 1 to 1 is where we saw a lack of programs. Sothat's what we focus. For example, we we're working with a company calledSchneider national. There a three pl or a third party logistics firm out ofWisconsin, they have the big orange trucks with their name on it, you know,so they had a their messaging was about better people, better process andbetter technology. They were stuck in that kind of messaging and campaignframework for over five years and they were trying to gain traction with anorganization called Sigma, which is a offshoot I believe of Cisco, Cisco withan S policy. And this particular company had heard Schneider's messagingthat better people process tech from Schneider, but also from competitorsbecause it was very similar to what everybody else was saying in theindustry and they didn't see how that was filling the gaps or personalimpacts to give them a reason to change. They didn't see themselves in thatstory that was being told, which is why they were ignoring any type of outreach.They were already ignoring email, social live phone conversations. So wetook a look at their contacts and we started on linkedin, we saw that theSchneider's team had the right context. The VP of sales even was connected toSigma's VP of logistics on Lincoln, which is someone they would have to getin the decision making committee. But we noticed that sales did not have theright content and messaging to make that human to human connection. So weredesigned profiles and content to show mid market firms like Sigma, how theywere being underserved by their transportation management system, whichis the TMS it's a solution or one of...

...the many solutions that Schneiderprovides Schneider needed to show sigma that they were and other targetaccounts that were similar to them that they were kind of being treated likethat middle child by their service providers because they weren't bigenough to get the huge service providers and get a lot of attentionand they weren't small enough to go with the more boutique kind of firms.They needed the team at sigma to acknowledge the gaps they had and howthey were impacting everything across uh the organization from operations tosupply chain to the P. N. L. How is it affecting employees any kind of KPI SThey had service performance and customer performance. So ultimately, wecreated by Eurocentric profiles on linkedin bio centric content andmessaging that spoke to the human buyers versus at them within keyaccounts that they wanted to win, protect and expand this particular case.We were talking to sigma, you know, when you're speak to human buyers, youhave to have industry, company rank role and even personal relevance. Butwe've seen that a lot of sales and marketing communications kind of stopsat what we said earlier, the the personalized which industry and companyrelevance and then personals when you add all of them together. And so oncewe were able to increase the relevance in, you know, across the board forSchneider, sigma and others that were mid market targets for them were kindof pulling business development through the sale cycle versus trying to likepush them through. So we were able to cut The sale cycle down to six monthsand Snyder was typically used to seeing 12 to 18 months and then the accountwas they won the account and it was worth anywhere from 2 to 6 milliondepending on how they, how long they can retain them as a client and howlong they keep up that personal relevance throughout the journey. It'sa massive deal. So it sounds like they kind of had a positioning problem butthey're probably like a very, I mean it's hard to position when you're likefully customizable, right? And lots of people are playing that game. So Ireally like how you did the research to find what I believe it, you said it wassigma, right? The customer they were targeting was they just did enoughresearch on it to find and prove to sigma that what they could do wouldsave them time would save the money would be beneficial for them. By doingenough research on sigma to be able to say like this is how we can help youspecifically how we help in general. How we can help you. Right. And thatmakes a massive difference. Does that mean you or like the marketing teamjust had to do a massive amount of research to figure out what they wereusing and how they were losing money and all that kind of stuff. Do you areyou doing that with just sigma or do you do it with like 10-20 accounts?Like how much how deep did you go to do that? And how with how many accounts?We typically work with a couple of dozen accounts but it's you know it'sit's the goals that they were looking at. So we when we chose sigma we knewthat it was going to have what kind of revenue potential it was going to have.So we only choose accounts that are worth 67 plus figures. Otherwise itrequires so much time and so much effort and so much research and so muchcontent creators. The message creation we make sure that we know that they fitthe I. C. P. To a. T. And that what is going on internally in that targetaccount is going to fit really well. So we always go backwards and start withwell what are you doing best with your current clients and not what you thinkyou're doing best with your current clients, what do your clients thinkthat you're doing best for them? And then we, like you said reverse engineerwho would be a target that you know what's an organ organization that looksvery similar and might have similar things happening behind the scenes thatwe're not aware of. So that's why we work with a limited number of accountsand 1 to 1. But whatever we learn from our 1 to 1, we then can scale it byapplying it to the one too few and one too many and those that are runningmaybe an A B. M. Tech or some other kind of campaign. And so that's the,when we play in that 1 to 1, how many, how many did you do? Like sigma? Was itjust like just Yeah, no, there was a...

...couple of handfuls, but that was thequarter where they wanted to win. Their particular Snyder's goal was toincrease revenue with a new client versus another time we had done it withan existing client that they wanted to expand and just make sure that theyretained. So it depends on the quarters, you know what their goals are. Eachcompany has goals. Do we want to protect our at risk accounts? Do wewant to expand current accounts? Do we want new logos, but again, they have tobe really lucrative accounts because this is a time heavy approach, thatmakes sense. And so you're saying, what I'm hearing you say is your kind ofhandling 12 at a time, whatever the priority is for that quarter you'rekind of going after. I mean this, I mean this is like the top of thepyramid, right? This is the 1 to 2 accounts that you really want to focuson are going all in on. So that makes a ton of sense. What do you do, let's sayfor audiences listening who have some really big contracts but they're notmillions were in the high hundreds of thousands. What do you typically dowith your own clients that are in that size? That's a similar approach? Youknow, what our focus is also is, you know, are we trying to shorten sailcycle times? Like another thing, not only do we get a good big deal withthat particular story told, but we did cut the sale cycle by a third, which isawesome in itself. So it depends if that's their goal. Do we want to evenexpand deal sizes? Do we see that there's an opportunity for that becauseit's a similar approach, but it is, take a lot of research into what'sgoing on. So what do we use intent data depending on if that's something that'savailable to us? Do we see what's going on? Are they an acquisition mode? Arethey just get a lot of funding so that it's a similar approach. It's just acase by case but it does require a lot of, lot of research. So what we do iswe're not a stand alone marketing were usually like a supplement to marketingbecause they can't necessarily have time or the resources to do what we do.What aspect to usually help assistant. Do you do the research or do you justkind of set up like the overall framework of like, well here's theproblem and here are some solutions of how we can help guide. Yeah, we dostrategy and execution. So we'll start of you know what the problems that weare that we see again depending on what their goal is expansion retention, newlogo but we do the research, we create the content to support that researchand we kind of, we work with sales really well because we our marketingspecifically for sales conversations that they want to have. So we willcreate case studies, we will create white papers, we will create row actualarticles to support the selling conversation. Um and I actually have anexample of that when we can get to a little later but that's what we do. Sowe do it from start to finish and then then whatever we use or what we createcan be used in the campaign. So like if we create a case study or an article wecan use it in the one too few or one to many campaigns and see, you know, thisis this is the framework that really worked along with this segment of thisindustry. What are some other approaches? It sounds like you'rereally heavy and like essentially putting together custom proposals ishow you're becoming the most personal, so you're creating marketing collateral,maybe even landing pages and stuff that are completely customized for the oneaccount which is highly personal. Tell me a little bit like what that lookslike tactically like what are the kinds of elements you're producing or incollaboration with these marketing teams in order to get these things infront of the a counter or you sending it pretty much is like a customizedwhite paper to the main account. Um, we might be sending customized content ofthe main account, but we don't necessarily call them out by name. Sowe kind of allude to what we know is going on, what we've heard is going onin the company. Um, you know, if we've heard it from news or research that wefound or even from Champions, Internal Champions in the organization thatmight not be decision makers, but are telling us, you know, we're havingproblems with X, Y, Z. And we really think that you can help us and we'dshow how what they're doing right now can better be either improved or ifthey need to switch vendors or whatever...

...the case may be. So we're doing it thatway. We're not actually. So it's it's more, it's not necessarily customize asit names the the prospective client, but it can be used as an evergreenpiece later on. If that makes sense. Makes a ton of sense. And it soundslike it's really, it's almost like farther, it's much farther down thefunnel where you're working probably as much with sales as you are with themarketing at that point. I mean if you're focusing on one or two accountsat the time than sales probably speaks a lot into it and but you're stillgenerating marketing assets that can be used up the funnel. So that's what aresome other approaches you've taken that you found work well Personal, A. B. M.So one thing that we're really big on and a lot of our clients are kind ofeither just getting started with this or they see that it's an issue, theyjust don't know how to address it. We have shown them that there can't be ahandoff between sales and marketing. So once the selling conversation begins,marketing needs to be there along the way. So whatever sales learns, um,during their internal conversation or their conversations with the prospectsor maybe a demo call whatever they need to share that information so thatmarketing can come along and support them with another piece of collateralthat might or maybe even some talking points for the next time. So I'll giveyou an example. We were working with an e commerce tech firm that learned in agood way. Not the hard way um that sales and marketing has to continue towork hand in hand. They were using a BMT conversations with the health carehealth care product firm and this product firm served long term carefacilities, skilled nursing assisted living hospice V. A. Hospitals. And thefirm wanted to move from a traditional old school phone and fax system tomodern self service e commerce platform. But the firm had two sides of thebusiness to support the new purchases that were strong demand uh And rentals.And our client software was designed specifically to integrate with S. A. P.C. R. P. Um That didn't have the capability at the time to meet theneeds of the rental business. So despite having these teams team calls,seeing a demo executing the executive buying committee at the health careproduct firm was still hung up on the rental side of the business. What theydidn't see is the risks, the costs um impacts of choosing an e commerceplatform that sat outside their er P. But would accommodate both sides of thebusiness. So instead of keeping them, what they were looking to do is geteverything under one solution. And it was going to be difficult because therewas gonna be some holes. Sales was trying to have further conversationswith the team but the VP of I. T. Was basically acting as their gatekeeperand kept the distance between sales and the buying team. So it was really hardyou know to have these internal conversations because all therequirements were being collected in a vacuum so instead of giving them thetime to make the wrong decision, marketing sales work together to createa consensus in their favor. So what we did was we created content to show theeffect of working outside ASAP with a platform like maybe magenta and theimpact that it would have on go to live on performance on P. N. L. And oncorporate initiatives because I. T. Would have to be tied up for at least 6to 12 months on this e commerce project. So by showing how their decision to gothe other way was going to affect them in different ways They were able towork together to ensure when with sales and marketing versus going that 5050chance that the buying team would make their decision in their favor. So wekind of help them see the bigger picture as opposed to one little pieceof the puzzle and that was made it easier for them to make the rightdecision or in our favor. I should say makes a lot of sense. I've been not inhuge company has been some mid sized companies. I've been the decision maker.I'm like large Crm purchases and different things like that and I'm likeman if I would have had a sales where it would have been delivering me thatinformation to help make a case to my,...

...to my people who are arguing against me.I would have been like so much, it would have been so much easier. Thatmakes a ton of sense from being that you're just kind of like you're, you'reasking me all these questions. I don't have all the answers. But if my vendorwho's trying to sell to me, he's actually like, there you go. You'rejust like Just do this. You're interesting that one person who'sreally rooting for you inside that organization. Right. Exactly. That'sthe idea. I'm curious to know if you have any campaign ideas for people whowant to do personal A B. M. Who are like in the way, way down like theiraverage contract sizes are in the tens of thousands and a. R. R. And maybeover the long long haul if they have annual recurrent revenue can add up toa lot, but generally they're not, they're not making that big of a gamewith each new customer. How do you become more personal with a B. M. Ifyour, if your contract sizes and that tens of thousands range. So first ofall I would talk to these sales people and tell them to take a look at theirlinkedin profile. Does it look like you're looking for a new role becauseyou're talking to me about your President Club awards quote after quoteunquote attainments, how much you've made in the last couple of years foryour company because me as a prospect and I know my clients have said this aswell the minute they see that, you know, a wall goes up because they knowthey're going to be sold, the minute they accept the connection, change itto be story based. How are you helping your buyers? How have you helped themrecently so that other people can kind of see themselves in that story. So ifyou come across as a seller, it's harder. But if you come across assomeone that's developing or sharing value and giving relevant value, itwill make it much easier to open that door to a connection and possibly aconversation down the line. If you can teach people they're going to be muchmore open to, you know, speaking with you. So it makes a lot of sense. Andrewriting linked in profiles is good. I still want to put that in like thepersonal category, right? You're offering content to be more relevantfor sure. But are there any ways to make it more personal where you'veactually customize something to that company? Customsize that to the company?Yeah, I think just before you send like if you know that you're trying to win aspecific organization or just get even closer towards a deal with anorganization? Think about what you're sending them. Are you sending them justthat next piece or that next touch in your cadence. So you know, we need tohave 10 touches before they're going to get to this stage in the buying journeyor is it actually relevant to them? Or if you're going to send them a piece ofcollateral, I've been sent white papers or case studies or e books that arehundreds of pages long and I'm not going to read the entire thing beforeyou pick me again next week. So if you're going to send me that, tell meto read page five through 10 or whatever and say, I want you to readthis because I know you're going to be interested in X, Y, Z. So that givesyou that other layer of relevance as opposed to a copy and pasted email thatlooks like you just sent it to everyone. You took the time to know well I'minterested in this, this is going to help me do my job better and make mebetter and you took that extra time. You know, it's not a lot of effort. Ithink people just think it's gonna be too time consuming so theyautomatically don't want to do it. But if you take that extra couple ofminutes to say that I know this is going to be important to you becauseand I'm not just reaching out to you to add to my number of touches inSalesforce or whatever it is, people are gonna know the difference. Yeah, itdoes make a huge difference. And even think about it is on linkedin now have, I don't know, I'm pretty active onlinkedin. So people ask me questions about podcasting, but I'll take thetime to go to Sweet Fish Media dot com. Search for an episode we've done onthat find and send it to him. Right? That's that little customized touchthat says like, hey, I heard you, I saw you and uh, here's, here's my best wayI can help you in a short amount of times. I can't spend too much time onlike an individual account, but you can still customize it. You can still makeit personal. Yeah, you can still put in the extra effort and people notice itright away. Is there anything else you do with large accounts that help it tobecome more person? All more human?...

Yeah, I mean you have to well, let mejust put it put it this way, I, we think of every interaction. So everytouch point, whether it's an invite to connect, it's an email, it's a phonecall, it's a voicemail, whatever it is that you're doing. However you, you runyour sales or marketing team, Every touch point has to be relevant becauseit has to talk to what the people are interested or speak to the person andwhat's interesting to them or what's what's happening in their world and ifit's not relevant then you can set yourself back because every person,every every interaction is kind of like a sales conversation. If you're notadding value in building layer upon layer each time then people are gonnanotice. And like you said it shows that you've actually taken the time to tohear what they had to say to learn a little bit about them. Um And whereveryou're getting your info, if you're getting it from the news, if you'regetting it from intent data, if you're getting it from zoom info, if you'regetting it even from their website because a lot of websites put theirpress releases and what they're their bosses are. You know like if you'relooking at a mid market company and it says the Ceos goal for the next year isto increase new increase revenue by X. Percent. That's something that'srelevant to them because you know that that's going to be trickling down tothem eventually. So see how you can speak to that and it just it shows thatyou're actually interested and you're not just wanting to sell them, you wantto actually become a partner to them. Um And every single interaction has toanswer that. So don't just hit send, don't just do something for the sake ofdoing it. Don't just make a phone call to make a phone call figure out whatthe intent is behind it because the intent is really important. Fantastic.I want to ask one last question. If somebody wanted to get started withpersonal A B. M. And I don't have a full A. B. M. Program implementedalready. What's the way they can kind of like start and get tests and testthe idea before they start to develop something that's more robust? Yeah. Solet's do it from the sales point of view. Pick a couple accounts that youwant. That note that you fit your I. C. P. Don't just pay accounts you said ohthese will look good on my ball of clients. Do they fit you? Do they fityour company? Can you solve their problems better than other people? Canyou address the issues that they're having and then kind of do a little bitof research and do a little bit of homework even if you have to do it onyour down time about those accounts and who are they, who are the target peoplethat you need to connect with and reach out to them and however you reach out,If you use linkedin, if you use email, make sure that you have some relevanceand test it out with one or two accounts at first and see how it goes.And you might have to put a little time and effort into it and see how thatgoes and then you can try to scale it a little bigger and then hopefully get alittle more buy in for maybe the rest of your team. Um see if you can kind oflaunch a pilot program that's a little bigger than that based on your findingsare, but I think take time to teach yourself to always learn what's goingon in your target accounts because I'm sure if one account is having an issue,then more accounts are going to be having that issue and it's just goingto help you in the long run because this, the personally BM approach the 1to 1 approaches the long game. It's not gonna be, I'm gonna get results since30 days, it's more like 60 9100 and 20 days. So think of it that way. Don'tthink of, you know, instant gratification because that's not theway this is gonna work. That's perfect. So Christina, thank you so much forjoining me on GDP growth. Where can people go to learn more about personala b M and connect with you online? Yeah, personally BM dot com is great. We alsohave another resource called Stop the sales drop dot com. It's a podcast.We've done some events, We've done some videos, there's articles from our teamas well as guest posts. So it's a free community that people can just kind oflearn from and reach out to me on linkedin. I'm there all the time andgive me some relevant reason as why we should connect, not just you listen tome on the podcast and it's Kristina with a K. Fantastic. Thanks again forjoining me on GDP growth. Thanks so...

...much dan Gary V says it all the time and weagree every company should think of themselves as a media company first,then whatever it is they actually do. If you know this is true, but your teamis already maxed out and you can't produce any more content in house. Wecan help, we produce podcasts for some of the most innovative BB brands in theworld and we also help them turn the content from the podcast and blog posts,micro videos and slide decks that work really well on linked in. If you wantto learn more, go to Sweet fish Media dot com slash launch or email Logan atsweet fish Media dot com.

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