Demandbase revealed the results of a survey run in conjunction with Wakefield Research that looks into how interactive, digital, marketing and advertising agencies are using ABM. The survey included responses from 400 advertising professionals and found that 66 percent of respondents say their agency uses ABM, and for those that don't, nearly 70 percent plan to integrate it into their client work in the future. Additionally, 81 percent of respondents feel it's likely their agency will only hire someone with ABM experience in the next year.
When it comes to agencies' clients, a whopping 100 percent of all agency respondents report that they have clients who use ABM. Of these respondents, 91 percent agree that clients who have adopted ABM have improved alignment between their sales and marketing teams.
"Over the past year, we've partnered more and more with agencies to support the needs of companies adopting ABM. It's exciting to see ABM move beyond in-house marketing teams and into the agency world," said Kent Ragen, Vice President of Channel Sales at Demandbase. "These survey results underscore the rising importance of ABM and demonstrate the need for agencies to add ABM to their skillset so that they can provide better service and counsel to their clients."
However, despite the majority of agencies reporting that their clients use ABM, survey respondents identified clients' lack of education on ABM as a big hurdle to ABM adoption. When asked which factors prevent more of their clients from implementing ABM, respondents cite a lack of understanding around the strategy – 45 percent say their clients don't understand what ABM is, and 32 percent say their clients think they're currently using it, but in fact are not.
Additionally, agencies report that the greatest challenges for addressing clients' marketing needs include:
- Clients are not fully utilizing the tools they have to improve and monitor ROI (38 percent)
- Clients are unaware of which technique can best meet their needs (24 percent)
- Clients haven't allocated enough resources for modernizing their marketing campaigns (22 percent)
- Clients are not willing to invest in new technologies (13 percent)
"Though ABM adoption is growing rapidly, it's clear that ABM implementation and measurement can be a daunting prospect," Ragen said. "Developing ABM tools that are easy-to-use and address team alignment and measurement will be an important part of advancing ABM even further in the years to come."