With so many account-based marketing vendors out there, it can be hard to keep track of each platform’s features, benefits, and shortcomings. Platforms evolve and change rapidly, meaning analyst reports from groups like Forrester are outdated before they even come out.
And since many sales intelligence vendors specializing in account identification and account intelligence position themselves as ABM platforms, the waters get even muddier. While these solutions are a pivotal piece of the overall ABM puzzle, they are far from all you need for full-cycle ABM.
So who are the key names to know in the ABM space today, and what features do they offer? Here’s an overview of today’s top ABM players and what you need to know about each.
Today’s ABM market leaders
Demandbase is easily one of the most comprehensive ABM platforms on the market today. In fact, Forrester singled out the company as the best ABM provider in Q2 of 2018—and you don’t have to squint to see why.
For one, the company is working with one of the largest B2B datasets around. It’s also using AI and machine learning to get a leg up on the competition. Beyond that, it’s one of the only end-to-end platforms and has a proprietary database that’s a veritable murderer’s row of raw information—700 billion page views, 280 million keywords matched to companies, and 14 million company records. Demandbase offers what comes closest to being an end-to-end ABM solution, from audience selection and segmentation, engagement, and analytics, and that all comes at a premium price tag not suitable for small to medium sized businesses.
A more affordable option for organizations not yet ready for an enterprise offering like Demandbase, Terminus offers the ability to upload your existing accounts, target contacts within them by department and level (primarily via banner ads), then track engagement of those accounts on your website.
With closer integration to your CRM and marketing automation systems, the ability to develop account-based campaigns triggered by specific activity, and enhanced dashboarding and analytics, Terminus aspires to be an “ABM Command Center for B2B Marketers” which means a focus on execution first.
As Eric Martin of SalesLoft puts it in his review of the ABM platform for TrustRadius, “Triblio is well suited for ABM programs that are nascent or growing, and want to make some quick wins…You should not invest in Triblio until you have a high level of data integrity in your CRM, a clear go-to-market strategy, and a defined list of target accounts selected to and agreed to be management.”
The more affordable ABM platform can help you customize messaging, content, and CTAs by account segments including product interest, content topic interest, firmographics, or funnel stage. Founded by Andrew Yee, former SVP of Product Development for Eloqua, Triblio is a newer market entrant that definitely falls into the “one to watch” category.
DiscoverOrg has become one of the largest and reliable sources of firmographic sales intelligence data on the market, particularly after their acquisition of RainKing last year.
They provide org charts based on publicly available data, along with contact info for account targets and tools to help aid in account prioritization. Their partnership with Bombora helps with proactive identification of accounts looking for specific solutions.
Like DiscoverOrg, Everstring falls squarely in the sales intelligence side of ABM, providing a robust suite of tools allowing you to build highly targeted account lists based on which segments and company types you are most likely to be successful with.
We use it here at Emissary to help us build our account lists and to define our marketing qualified leads using a scoring model that leverages external research, predictive intelligence, and search data to define when a prospect is “in market.”
Founded in 2002, MRP looks at ABM not as a marketing gimmick, but rather as a “customer engagement strategy.” The idea is that when you have insights into customers’ purchasing history, you can accurately fulfill their business needs and create content they’ll engage with.
When your partner wants you to do the dishes, you can usually get the hint long before they ask you directly. Well, MRP not only does the dishes without being asked, the company also scrubs the baseboards, takes out the trash, and throws in a load of laundry to boot. That’s because MRP specializes in predictive analytics. They know how to find the best targets for your marketing and sales departments, and leverages analytic strengths to generate first-class workflows that will engage prospective clients.
D&B and Hoovers have been providing companies with deep background on their primary accounts for decades, but they kicked it up a notch when they acquired Avention (makers of OneSource) last year.
While trying to keep up with the varying brands that this borglike corporate entity has taken on over the last few years has been a little dizzying, it is still the largest and most reliable one-stop shop for company names, descriptions, size, and demographic data, as well as helping understand company relationships.
TechTarget proves that not all value comes from shiny new things. Originally known for the “problem solving content” they host on a network of over 140 websites, TechTarget has evolved over 20 years into one of the leading sources of insights around purchase intent based on content consumption and buying behaviors.
They offer a whole slew of services, from market research and custom account based demand gen campaigns, as well as tech-based solutions like their Priority Engine, which promises sellers direct access to potential new accounts interested in their offerings.
Agent3 is an ABM solutions and services business that provides a wide range of solutions covering all aspects of data, technology and content. At the heart of their solution is the Agent3 Platform, which curates a number of unstructured data sets and news about key accounts, executives, sectors, competitors, as well as monitoring changes in buyer behavior on the B2B web via intent data. All these data sets are aligned to one common proprietary data taxonomy and smart filters allow users to match their company’s portfolio of solutions and services against their clients / prospects’ business drivers. This allows sales and marketing users to identify timely opportunities to engage in order to drive revenue growth.
The company also provides a managed service through their Analyst Centre of Excellence (ACE), where a team of experienced analysts provide on-demand analyses of accounts, competitors, executives and markets.
(Full disclosure: Emissary partners with Agent3 to service some of our biggest clients.)
Emerging ABM players to watch
The eight companies above lead the pack, but they’re far from the only players in the space. Platforms like LeanData, DataFox, 6sense, and Madison Logic are all emerging contenders that occupy various corners of the ABM marketplace. While, as Forrester notes, they still have critical pieces missing that prevent them from truly competing with the power players in the space, each offers an aspect of ABM functionality that may be attractive to growing revenue teams.
As mentioned above, the market is changing fast. Here are a handful of evergreen resources we recommend to keep up to date on the ABM marketplace:
- TrustRadius ABM Overview and Trustmap
- G2Crowd ABM Overview
- Forrester New Wave: ABM Platforms, Q2 2018
- Martech Advisor’s ABM Page
With the ever-increasing amount of platforms in the ABM landscape, it’s harder than ever to keep up with who offers what. We’ve distilled the field into the eight key platforms that are relevant to most companies’ needs in order to help you gain a better understanding of their features and shortcomings. Our list is far from exhaustive, but it’s a great place to start if you’re confused about the dizzying array of ABM platforms out there.