The Hard Corps Marketing Show

ABM & The Dark Funnel - Latane Conant - Hard Corps Marketing Show #81

May 30, 2019

Everyone is talking about Account Based Marketing (ABM). It’s all over social media, webinars, speaking sessions, and there are books about it. It has become a buzzword in marketing, the centerstage of a magic show. But what is ABM really? There is so much hype about it don’t you wish it was boiled down to just the essential keys?

Listen to a marketing executive with sales, accounting, and consulting experience, one that hosts the podcast, Talking Sense, and is the CMO of 6sense, Latane Conant. She demystifies ABM and takes away the smoke and mirrors to reveal it at its core. You don’t want to miss the show!



  • In marketing, consider the kind of prospect experience you want to deliver. Think about how buyers buy today and you are going to execute the practices of ABM.
  • Marketers need to consider The Dark Funnel. It’s the part of the buyer’s journey that you are not able to track. For example, when buyers research your competition, or when they listen to podcasts, or when they search for certain keywords, or if there is a member of the buying team you don’t know about.
  • When you ask your prospect to fill out a form give them something better in return.
  • Use your content marketing as a means to answer the questions your prospects are having during different stages of the purchase cycle.
  • Think about the information that marketers can provide to sales about the account. Why is that account considered in-market? What is their buyer persona? What is their anonymous and known activity and what key-words have they searched?
  • Segment your marketing to the different buyer personas. For example, if a competitor’s product fails, how can you market to that specific group of people to reach them and show that your product and brand is the answer?
  • The 5 Keys to the ABM Process: 1) Select the Best Accounts 2) Know About Them 3) Engage the Right Way 4) Collaborate with Sales 5) Track Real Stuff
  • Collaborate with your sales team. They will help decide the company’s Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). Finding the ICP will help the marketing team decide to which accounts they should prioritize their marketing.
  • The 3 Keys to Sales & Marketing Alignment: 1) Trust 2) Transparency 3) Time Horizon
  • Be aligned with the product team, think about where is the market going? What are your customers asking for?
  • Start your marketing approach with “The Why” and establish your culture, vision, strategy, and your brand. These foundational pieces need to be understood holistically.
  • A vision should ignite uncomfortable excitement. Push the limits and be bold.
  • Once a vision is established, consider how you can drive that growth. Always be considering the overall pipeline, deal velocity, average deal size, and the win rates.
  • Marketers can always learn from the sales team. The sales team members understand the business, customers, and go-to market strategy really well. Therefore, get aligned with sales!
  • Prioritize your marketing efforts around the product, service, and buyer personas that are making your company money. Marketers cannot afford to accommodate everybody. Understand the data and go after what gets your company the best win rates.
  • Leaders need to help create the fun, it’s why people want to work for them. The fun comes from being motivated, thinking that the work is meaningful, and enjoying the team of employees.




 Busted Myths

  • ABM is a buzzword that people just throw around. It’s really just good marketing. It focuses the marketer to go back to the roots, the customer. This makes for a good marketing and sales experience. To execute ABM the marketer needs to think about how the go-to market strategy can be framed around how buyers buy today.
  • Content is king. Content matters, but there is already so much of it. Content marketing efforts need to be prioritized to answering the question of what jobs do the prospects need to do, to make a purchasing decision.