I was asked the other day: how does Agile Marketing fit with Account Based Marketing? I think the two concepts are somewhat unrelated. The first, ABM, answers the question of who you are marketing to and how you are approaching them, while the second, Agile, answers the question of how you are managing the process. That said, I do think every Agile Marketer who is also a B2B marketer should understand the basics of Account Based Marketing.
Imagine your best customer. They understand your products or services nearly as well, sometimes better, than you do. They tell other people about how good you are, and they’re always ready to serve as a reference. When you launch a new product, or a new version of your existing product, they’re often the first to adopt, and they provide you with great feedback.
Are these better customers an accident, a happy coincidence of their needs and your products or services, or is it possible to create better customers? I think the latter is true, and here are a few thoughts about how to increase your chances of developing better customers.
Wrike, the maker of work management tools for marketing and product development teams, has just released a survey of over 800 marketers across all disciplines called The State of Agile Marketing in 2016. It’s a fascinating study which confirms many of my own informal observations over the past six months.
The Good News on Agile Marketing
According to Wrike’s survey data, over 70% of marketing teams are embracing some aspects of Agile Methods. That’s really high awareness and the beginnings of acceptance of Agile Marketing. Scott Brinker wrote recently that Agile Marketing has “crossed the chasm”. I’m not quite ready to call that crossing, but it does feel like Agile Marketing is starting to go mainstream.
Last week I attended Martech USA in San Francisco. Organized by my friend Scott Brinker, Martech showcases marketing technology from over 100 vendors. I learned a lot, both from wandering the show floor and talking to vendors, as well as from the high quality presentations. Perhaps my favorite presentation of the entire conference occurred early on the second day: David Edelman, global co-leader of McKinsey’s Digital and Marketing & Sales Practices, discussed the Buyer’s journey. Unfortunately, his slides are not available online, but he has written on this topic over at the Harvard Business Review in an article titled “Competing on Customer Journeys“.
I recently had the chance to interview Caroline McClelland, who has practiced Agile Marketing since 2009, both with her previous company HoundDog Technology Ltd and now in her current position as Digital Account Manager at Waracle, a mobile application developer based out of the U.K. Here are my questions and her answers.