ABM Display Ad Secret: For Better Results, Try the “Marigold Effect”

Many seasoned gardeners know the power of companion planting. When implementing this type of planting, the companion plant often chosen is the yellow or orange Marigold flower.

With companion planting, marigolds have been proven to help the growth and performance of basil, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumbers, eggplant, gourds, kale, potatoes, squash, and tomatoes. Marigolds also a great companion plants to melons because they deter beetles. In fact, some scented varieties of marigolds not only deter beetles, but beet leaf hoppers, cabbageworms, Mexican bean beetles, and nematodes (microscopic worms that attach the roots of plants) as well. Some varieties even repel rabbits.

According to the University of Rhode Island Green Share program, the secret is in the strong scent of the marigold. Many insects and pests find food based on smell and the marigolds can mask the scent of various crops. So, if the adult cabbage moth has a tough time finding the crops by smell there will be fewer cabbageworms around the cabbage and other plants.

It has been said that the roots of French Marigolds release a chemical so strong that this marigold is an effective pesticide for several years after the plants have died in your garden or flower bed. The University of Florida Extension recommends planting a robust crop of marigolds one season before planting fruits or vegetables to effectively control nematodes.

The Alabama Cooperative Extension Service notes that marigolds also suppress some disease-causing agents.

Many rose gardeners also swear that marigolds help deter weeds and strengthen rose plants. The powerful outcome from certain types of marigolds—repelling insects and pests, suppressing diseases, and minimizing weeds—strengthens companion plants. The combination of marigolds with companion plants creates greater performance for all collective plants versus just growing roses, vegetables, or marigolds on their own.

That is the “Marigold Effect.”

While the Marigold Effect is often seen in the gardening community, I believe that it can be applied to the Account-Based Marketing (ABM) world with great results as well. One of the best ways that I see to create the Marigold Effect in ABM is with display advertising and retargeting.

As with gardening, I see a lot of pests and disease impacting conventional display advertising. To me, the infographics, charts, and blogs that highlight that display advertising is not effective with an average click through rate (CTR) of 0.07 percent are pests to ABM practitioners. These pests distract marketers and slow down their progress. In fact, several marketers have told me that they have not implemented an ABM display advertising program because they are familiar with this specific stat. Unfortunately, this CTR is not specific to B2B marketing and certainly not to Account-Based Marketing. The disease that is negatively affecting conventional display advertising is the lack of targeting. Typically, the display advertising is targeted only to job functions or other large collective categories.

These conventional display advertising pests and diseases have caused ABM practitioners to scale back or cut out ABM display advertising based on misperceptions and poor data associations.

The fact is that ABM works because it is founded on targeting specific accountsThe more specific you can get, the better. You are not casting a wide net. You are not sending one generic message to a whole world. Perhaps your target audiences find your ads intrusive and not interesting because you have not presented a relevant pain point or value to them. You should be developing very specific, compelling messages with strong calls-to-action. Look at your messaging. Do you like it because it is getting your points across or because it is truly compelling to a specific group of accounts? How do you know it is compelling? Test it before you run a program. Ask a few existing accounts if this messaging would get them to act. If they say “yes” run with it.

So, ABM display advertising usually does a lot better than conventional display advertising because it is targeting specific accounts. Some ABM display advertising platforms, like Kwanzoo, can offer deep targeting around:

  • Job function
  • Personas, job interest
  • Job level, job title
  • In-market intent, event attendance
  • Partner or competitor accounts

As you can imagine, this deep targeting combined with very specific and compelling messaging and calls-to-action leads to a more attractive bumper crop of click through rates.

“ABM display advertising usually does a lot better than conventional display advertising because it is targeting specific accounts.”

Now let’s add the Marigold Effect to ABM display advertising…Site or email retargeting.

According to an Adroll state of the industry report, “retargeting boosts display advertising by 61%.”

Wow…but that is only the beginning. Let me give you a couple more Marigold Effect validation points. One, according to Smallbusinesstrends.com, “while the average click through rate for ads is .07 percent, the average click through rate for retargeted ads is 10x or .7 percent.” Two, according to Wheelhouse Advisors, “The average retargeted ad campaign spurs a 1046% spike in branded search and a 726% increase in site visitation after four weeks.”

Now, keep in mind that these stats are from conventional retargeting campaigns—not ABM retargeting campaigns.

With ABM retargeting, instead of retargeting all site visitors or all visitors to a specific site’s content page, you can retarget all site visitors from target accounts only. With this precise targeting, your ABM retargeting stats may be higher than these well-known, conventional retargeting stats.

“Retargeting boosts display advertising by 61%.”

“While the average click through rate for ads is .07 percent, the average click through rate for retargeted ads is 10x or .7 percent.”

Not every marketer is born with a “green thumb” when it comes to Account-Based Marketing. As you deepen your knowledge on ABM best and proven practices, I hope you will consider the Marigold Effect. It works in the world of gardening and it works in the world of Account-Based Marketing as well. Go out and plant your ABM display advertising seeds but make sure that you nurture them with ABM retargeting “marigolds” and watch your crops flourish.

“The average retargeted ad campaign spurs a 1046% spike in branded search and a 726% increase in site visitation after four weeks.”

About Kelly Waffle: 

As Vice President of Marketing at Kwanzoo, Kelly brings more than 20 years of demand generation, marketing automation, and account-based marketing (ABM) experience. He has been a trusted advisor as a practitioner, consultant, and vendor and has won Marketo’s Revvie Award as well as Eloqua’s Markie Award. He was named to Onalytica’s 2017 Top 50 Martech Influencer List.

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