Deanna Shimota (CEO of GrowthMode Marketing) Shares How to Build a Demand Gen + ABM Powerhouse

We have said many times on the ABM Done Right Podcast that spray and pray is not dead, despite what many marketers say. It is alive and kicking — just in a different form as it’s more targeted. Teams are still spraying messages and content out to their ICP, hoping that it sticks instead of aligning with future and existing customers. There is no differentiation between a targeted demand gen motion and an ABM motion.

In the ABM Done Right Podcast below, Deanna Shimota joined Kristina Jaramillo and Eric Gruber to discuss the difference between ABM and demand gen, how the two functions should support each other, and how to build a strong demand gen powerhouse that creates a pipeline of strong tier 1 accounts that ABM should move to revenue faster at a higher ACV. Kristina and Eric also share how an ITSM firm used ABM to accelerate stuck accounts to revenue.

Here Are the Key Points from This Podcast with Deanna:

  • There is confusion in the market between ABM and demand gen. If teams are doing 1: many motions or 1: few motions, it is more than likely they are doing demand gen. ABM should be a 1:1 motion that is personal to the account and the human buyers to move them forward once they’re identified as a high-value account that has a high likelihood of closing if they are given the right experiences and the right interactions. ABM is about getting these accounts to revenue faster at a higher ACV vs. getting the accounts in the pipeline, which is demand gen’s function.
    Click here to learn more about our personal 1:1 account-based approach.


  • From a demand gen standpoint, demand gen is a long-term marketing strategy that is designed to build awareness, credibility and trust with your ideal customer profile so you can create demand for your products. It’s about building an audience that engages with your content even before they are in the market to buy – and the goal is to create a user experience that connects your audience to relevant, highly targeted content for all stages of buyer readiness to ultimately build a pipeline of interested prospects that come to you when they are ready to buy. ABM is a long-term business revenue strategy that fixes GTM motions, the interactions that teams are having and account experiences to further capture, expand and close the demand you generated. With ABM, you think about how you’re going to nurture named accounts from a sales, marketing, product and customer success perspective and think about the health of the account. You think about each interaction across the buyer’s journey and customer lifecycle.
    Click here for our demand gen vs. ABM podcast to learn more about the differences.


  • Demand gen feeds ABM accounts that are engaging with thought leadership content. But accounts go dark the account experience is not followed with content and messaging that meets their specific situation. The demand gen campaigns are still too broad for status quo and indecisive accounts. So demand gen supports ABM and helps GTM teams to prioritize the accounts they should be targeting as a team to win, protect and expand. In return, ABM supports demand gen as ABM should focus on micro-interactions vs. looking at campaigns and guessing what may increase conversions. From an ABM standpoint, you can see what is working in very specific situations and what’s not – and why it may work or not work. Now, we can apply those lessons that teams are learning from ABM and apply it to demand gen campaigns to ensure we get the right accounts into the pipeline that have already started the reframing process.
    Click here to listen to our podcast on how Riverbed Technology is going beyond demand gen.


  • Too many teams are focused on short-term gains vs. building a long-term engine. Teams are focused on driving leads and pipelines now. By focusing on short-term, teams are neglecting the 90-95% of the market that is currently not in the market. Everyone is chasing in-market accounts, but these accounts have predefined needs and they’re looking at competitors and seeing who can provide the most capabilities for their needs at the lowest price. You have 60% of the market that is indifferent and in status quo. If you can create the needs and the buying vision vs. reacting to predefined needs, you can get a higher deal size.
    Click here to listen to our podcast on why Latane Conant at 6sense is wrong when she says to only focus on accounts showing intent.
  • Many teams (especially in crowded markets like HR tech and cybersecurity) lack a point of view where they are unable to teach to differentiate against competitors and against the status quo so accounts can raise their hand and pull GTM teams into their buying process. This not only impacts demand gen but also impacts ABM, as GTM teams should be coming to each social/email/live interaction with a point of view about their prospects’ businesses. However, teams can not come to a point of view about their prospects’ businesses when they do not have a point of view about their own business.
    Click here to listen to our podcast, where we discuss this in greater detail.
  • Too many teams do not have a documented demand gen strategy or a documented ABM strategy. They are engaging in random acts of marketing vs. focusing on the experience that prospects get at each stage of the buying process. In our “Why ABM Programs Fail” video series, we share how most teams do not have an ABM strategy.
    Click here to watch the video.
  • Most content does not support demand gen, ABM or sales. Most content is thought leadership, but it does not reframe prospects’ thoughts and ideas. The content is not designed to create an a-ha moment. Before you can drive demand for your product or solution, you have to drive change in the minds of buyers and influencers. We need to tell a story that challenges their thinking. Once you create that demand with a mobilizer, then we need content for specific selling conversations and internal conversations that sales and marketing are not part of. We need to help decision-makers and influencers across target accounts see the gaps that will impact their company, achievement of their strategic priorities, their department and themselves personally. It needs to bring buyers together for a conversation that will lead in your direction. Matt Dixon (author of The Challenger Sale and The Jolt Effect) discusses this in greater detail in his ABM Done Right Podcast interview.

    Click here to listen to the podcast with Matt Dixon
  • Demand generation is not about bringing prospects into your sales process. It’s about prospects bringing YOU into their buying process – and then ABM supports their buying experience and provides them with the personal content, interactions and experiences that will give customers a clear means for evaluating trade-offs or moving forward with sufficient certainty to justify an expensive, potentially disruptive purchase. Gartner’s research shows that customers struggle to make sense of all the low and high-quality information that is pushed out and it’s why they are significantly more likely to settle for a course of action that is smaller or less disruptive than originally planned if they take any action at all.
    Click here to see how our account-based enablement program will help your tier 1 accounts buy from you – and expand with you.

Here Are Additional ABM and Demand Gen Podcasts to Listen To:


  • How ABM is Misunderstood featuring Mark Stouse (CEO of Proof Analytics)


  • Cristina Daroca on how her team at Riverbed Technology is going beyond demand gen with ABM


  • Kristina Jaramillo on the differences between ABM and demand gen


  • Amber Bogie on how Reachdesk is winning with ABM and demand gen and why the teams need to co-exist.


Personal ABM Articles on ABM + Demand Gen That You Should Read


Personal ABM Videos on Demand Gen + ABM That You Should Watch

Account Based Engagement Summit


Click Here to Watch the Videos

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