Scaling your ABM efforts: 5 challenges to be aware of

All articles | Strategy
Published Jul 03, 2024 | Written by Megan Clack
Scaling your ABM efforts: 5 challenges to be aware of


You’ve successfully implemented your first (or second) account-based marketing campaign, turned high-value target accounts into customers, and effectively gotten the ABM T-shirt. Reaping the rewards of your success reveals that account-based marketing is a worthwhile approach to growing revenue, so you’re considering ramping up your ABM efforts moving forward–but is it as simple as sticking to what worked before? 

Scaling ABM campaigns in the contract manufacturing industry, no matter how successful they have been before, comes with some challenges that should be considered. These account-based marketing challenges can affect both the marketing and sales teams and need careful consideration to ensure successful implementation and scaling in the future. 

But staying on top of your game when you're already on an ABM winning streak isn't difficult. It's just a matter of knowing what's required to scale and how best to achieve maximum impact. Here are the five ABM challenges to be aware of when giving your ABM function a boost.

1. Measuring and attributing success

Measuring the success of your ABM campaigns can be challenging due to long sales cycles and the multiple touchpoints involved. Assuming you've decided on KPIs and metrics to track ahead of kicking off your initial ABM campaigns, you likely now need to reassess their efficacy before scaling. The challenge then becomes accurately attributing marketing efforts to sales outcomes. 

This is where you need an effective attribution model. Without attribution, it can be difficult to prove the ROI of your ABM campaigns to stakeholders​​ and get the go-ahead to ramp up. There are several attribution models worth exploring and experimenting with, such as:

  • Multi-touch attribution modelling: Assigns credit to multiple touchpoints throughout the customer journey, providing a more holistic view of which interactions influenced final conversion.
  • Cross-channel attribution modelling: Evaluates the impact of various marketing channels (email, social media, PPC) on a customer's decision to convert, attributing credit across these channels.
  • Linear attribution modelling: Evenly distributes credit across all touchpoints in the customer journey, treating each interaction as equally important.
  • First-touch attribution modelling: Assigns 100% of the conversion credit to the customer's first interaction with your brand.
  • Last-touch attribution modelling: Gives full credit to the final touchpoint before the conversion, ignoring previous interactions.
  • Time-decay attribution modelling: Assigns more credit to touchpoints that occur closer to the conversion time, decreasing the value of earlier interactions.
  • U-shaped attribution modelling: Assigns the majority of credit to the first and last touchpoints, with the remaining credit distributed among the middle interactions.
  • W-shaped attribution modelling: Gives significant credit to the first touch, lead conversion touch, and the last touch, with the remaining credit distributed among other touchpoints.

Tools like Marketo Measure have attribution reporting capabilities that can help you decipher which channels and touchpoints deliver the most value according to the model most appropriate for your campaign. These valuable insights can help you rejig your KPIs if needed and refine your ABM strategy moving forward.Tip 1 (1)

2. Personalising content at scale

As ABM focuses on highly personalised marketing efforts, creating and managing tailored content for each target account can be resource-intensive. Marketers must ensure they have the resources to produce high-quality, relevant content that resonates with each account, especially as they start to expand their campaign efforts and possibly target more high-value accounts than before. 

Leveraging AI and machine learning can help you create personalised ABM experiences at scale. Tools like ChatGPT are helpful but require some tinkering to develop effective content prompts. Alternatively, dedicated content management platforms have started to include AI in their service suites, which have more sophisticated and bespoke capabilities that integrate with your data. A good option to explore here is HubSpot's AI-powered assistant, ChatSpot.Tip 2

3. Allocating resources optimally

Scaling ABM campaigns often requires significant investment in budget and staffing. Ensuring adequate resources for content creation, campaign implementation and management, and sales is critical​​, but budget sign-off can be difficult to attain.

Further training and development can prove beneficial for maximising budget allocations and enhancing ABM efforts. Executing an ABM campaign, seeing measurable results, and even closing some sales can be justification enough to upskill existing teams. This would include training in areas like data analytics, personalisation techniques, and effective communication strategies​​ to take your ABM efforts to the next level.

If resource constraints persist, consider reexamining data insights from previous or existing ABM campaigns. Are there underperforming channels you can scale back on or lose entirely? Are there cheaper alternatives to the tools you're using that the team can easily pick up? Or you may need to narrow your focus to fewer, more high-value target accounts that can be especially profitable when closed.Tip 3

4. Creating consistent customer experiences

Providing a consistent and seamless customer experience across all touchpoints throughout the buyer's journey is crucial for ABM success. Achieving this for current and future campaigns requires coordination across various departments, from marketing to sales to customer support. Ensure all interactions you have with your target accounts align with your overall strategy and effectively help guide them on their journey to becoming–and staying–loyal customers​.

Flexibility is paramount here, as quickly adapting to changes in target account or market behaviour can help you create consistency where it's lacking or make necessary changes as needed. A flexible approach that can accommodate strategy pivots if required can not only mitigate risks you identify as you ramp up your ABM efforts but also create that memorably seamless experience that builds trust between your brand and its audiences.

Tip 4

5. Maintaining long-term relationships

Account-based marketing is as much about nurturing and expanding existing customer relationships as it is acquiring new accounts. A strategic element to consider when scaling your ABM efforts is how much value and effort you need to place on growing existing partnerships through means like upselling. To truly capitalise on the benefits of your ABM campaigns in the long run, you need to prioritise relationship maintenance through continuous engagement and consistent value delivery after the initial sale has been finalised–thus turning your ABM into a lasting experience beyond the first close.

Again, data is your most valuable asset here. Regularly gathering and acting on customer insights helps maintain relevance and address your target accounts' evolving needs. Take to your CRM, data analytics, and account intelligence tools to source this data, and consider reaching out to existing customers directly with well-thought-out surveys or feedback requests.

Tip 5


Growing your account-based marketing efforts through additional budget, campaigns, or increased focus is an exciting evolution that can do wonders for your ROI. However, knowing the challenges of scaling and learning from previous campaigns' mistakes will set your future ABM activity up for long-term success. 

By implementing attribution models to quantify results, personalising more content at pace, optimising resource allocation, creating a consistent customer experience, and prioritising long-term relationships, your teams can effectively tackle the challenges associated with scaling ABM tactics, ensuring a more streamlined and successful campaign execution.

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Published by Megan Clack July 3, 2024
Megan Clack