Social Business Engine Podcast with Nate Skinner

The Rise of Account Based Marketing through AI


Nate Skinner, Vice President of Product Marketing at Salesforce, has been in B2B marketing for ten years with a focus on enterprise software, cloud, and mobile technology. Nate is responsible for B2B marketing for Salesforce, Pardot, and Einstein. In this episode, Nate and I are diving into Salesforce Einstein Account-Based Marketing (ABM). You’re going to learn what it is, how it’s used, and examples of Salesforce Einstein in action.

If you’re a regular listener to this podcast, you’ve noticed that I’m paying quite a bit of attention to artificial intelligence (AI) and how it impacts marketing professionals and the sales process. I believe the lines are blurring between marketing and sales. My conversation with Nate provides more validation that we’re seeing the convergence of marketing and sales, and how AI and account-based marketing play a significant role in this convergence.

Salesforce and Artificial Intelligence

Salesforce started in 1999 with the vision of transforming the enterprise software landscape and the technology model with cloud computing. They’re the leader in marketing applications and the number one CRM software provider in the world. Salesforce set up a new business model with subscriptions and a distinct philanthropy model setting aside one percent of their equity and employee’s time to create

Nate says that AI has tremendous promise for B2B marketers. Salesforce’s AI product Einstein is “everyone’s data scientist.” For example, it gives B2B marketers the ability to do predictive lead scoring. This used to be a rules-based process, but Einstein provides automated lead scoring capabilities. Einstein can also create look-alike audiences so the marketer can reproduce previous marketing campaigns that were successful with a similar audience. It also provides vast campaign and opportunity insights.

Trends of AI in B2B Marketing

In the “age of the customer,” everything is expected to be personalized, relevant, and device agnostic. Nate referenced CareerBuilder as one example of a brand using Einstein Account-Based Marketing (ABM). The company was able to increase their response rate on offers from 30% to 90% by leveraging the built-in intelligence in Einstein.

According to Constellation Research, 92% of surveyed companies plan to execute ABM in 2017, but only 19% are confident they can execute their strategy. The reason people are unsure about ABM is that they’re confused about what it is. ABM isn’t new though – it was just difficult to scale in the past. Einstein allows companies to take part in ABM using broad-based marketing strategies and tactics to target specific buyers.

Nate says marketing is sales. If you can’t can’t gauge the impact of your marketing efforts, then you can’t show the value. ABM allows you to measure the value of your marketing. While salespeople are using CRM  for their day to day activities, marketing is creating their campaigns separately. The two are not in sync and collaboration is broken. Einstein brings the two together by integrating with both marketing and sales.

“Marketing is sales. ABM allows us to measure the value of marketing.” @renniksn with @bernieborgesClick To Tweet

Sika, a commercial construction product manufacturer, has a finite list of target customers. Einstein ABM simplifies how they identify key accounts and how to market to these companies. Valpak is another brand that has seen major benefits from Salesforce. They were challenged with generating high-quality leads through their website. Valpak reinvented their marketing presence on their site with a redesign and the addition of a lead generation tool. This allowed for a 30% increase in lead conversion, and in a mere 90 days they closed over $1M using Salesforce, Salescloud, Pardot, and Einstein.

Salesforce strives to empower the Trailblazers, those customers, and partners that are setting the bar with Einstein. They’ve set up Trailhead to educate everyone (not just customers) on how they can harness AI, Einstein, ABM, and more to further their careers. Whether you’re in B2C, B2B, the non-profit sector, government, small business, midsize business, or an enterprise, you can benefit from Einstein Account-Based Marketing.

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This article was originally published on Social Business Engine.

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