More often than not, ABM is perceived as an outbound operation in nature. We target a list of accounts that meet our ICP, using emails and paid ads, and try to get their attention. We focus a considerable amount of effort in writing the right type of emails to these accounts, and orchestrate it with programs to warm them up before we hit them with a direct approach.

This view of ABM causes us to focus a great deal of effort in buying databases, finding phone numbers, using auto-diallers to increase SDR efficiency, and investing in optimizing outbound motions, over and over again.

There is only one issue with this approach. 

Enterprise buyers don’t behave like that. 

Enterprise Buyers – it is all about research 

Enterprise buyers processes are based on the following:

  1. Multiple stakeholders – companies set up a buying committee that usually include technical leaders, business leaders, and purchasing representatives. It isn’t in all cases a formal one – but multiple stakeholders are usually involved in key purchasing decisions.
  2. Self education – enterprise buyers consult with peers, solution providers, and the web when they research and create their short list.

This means that while we invest a considerable amount of effort in building and setting up our outbound operation and touchpoints, buyers that are actively looking for a solution are hitting our site. 

Usually ABM is used as a tactic where large deals are involved. This makes every touchpoint matter – inbound and outbound alike. 

Example of the Inbound Gap in Your ABM Strategy 

Here are a couple of examples of ABM  inbound journey gaps: 

  1. A visitor from a Tier 1 account is visiting your website, that account has already been in touch with your company and there’s an Account Executive that is responsible for the relationship. However, when that visitor hits your website and would like to set up a meeting with your company, he is sent to a generic Contact Us page or Request a Demo page. A better way to do that would be to immediately book a meeting with the right AE, directly from the website page itself. 
  2. The same visitor is hitting your website – and while you know what is their main reason of interest in your product, they still get a generic homepage. The content is not personalized or leads the visitor to re-engage with the right AE from the page itself. 
  3. An account is hitting your website and does some research. That account is not prioritized high on your list. However, that visitor searched for a solution similar to yours in the last 7 days – a signal that would have increased its importance and priority in your account list.

To sum it up, the Inbound gap causes the following:

  1. The Meeting Gap. Reduced performance due to friction in meeting setup with your most important prospects.
  2. The Experience Gap. Lost opportunity to accelerate the engagement process with your key accounts due to lack of a customized and personalized content experience.
  3. The Insight Gap. Lost potential of prioritizing accounts that are ready to buy by cross-referencing their onsite and third party sites engagement.

Closing the Gap 

Account 360, PMG’s scaleable account based program framework, takes into consideration the Inbound gap, and offers tools and processes to close it. 

Here are some of the tools offered by our partners that can help to close this gap:

  1. The Meeting Gap. Our clients are using Chili Piper to close the loop  between an inbound visitor and their AE. This is done elegantly by combining account ownership and simple yet sophisticated lead routing logic in Chili Piper. 
  2. The Experience Gap. Uberflip for ABM offers a scalable solution that also creates a personalized experience at scale, without the need for IT. Think of a mini-site that is generated for each visiting account with content relevant to them based on data from 3rd party engagement and your CRM. 
  3. The Insight Gap. 6Sense combines 3rd party intent data, 1st party website engagement, and historical deal data to identify companies that are in an active sales cycle. It’s also possible to integrate 6Sense with Uberflip to increase personalization of these content hubs. 


As seen above, while it would have been simpler if buyers would have engaged with sellers according to a strict separation between Inbound and Outbound channels, the reality is a bit more complex. It requires robust journey planning with the right orchestration and tech in place to support it.

I hope that this short article helped you in doing just that. 

This album was played while writing this post. Gotta love PJ.