law firm content marketing

How Legal Marketers Can Measure Account-Based Marketing Success

by Kevin Vermeulen • April 27th, 2021 • Digital Marketing | Blog

how to measure account-based marketingMeasuring the effectiveness of your law firm’s account-based marketing (ABM) campaigns can be difficult—especially when you’re collaborating across several internal teams, leveraging multiple tools, and engaging with prospects and clients across various channels. However, the success of your ABM strategy depends on measurement. For your ABM campaigns to truly thrive, you must be able to measure your efforts, analyze how they’re moving you toward your goals, and optimize your campaigns to boost results. Here are tips on how to gather insights you need to measure and improve the impact of your account-based marketing campaigns.

ABM analytics are different from traditional demand generation analytics

While new leads are essential marketing metrics, they are insufficient to measure account-based marketing. ABM requires account-based metrics for the following reasons:

  • ABM occurs at every stage of the funnel
  • ABM takes time to show results
  • ABM metrics are about quality, not quantity

What metrics matter in ABM?

There are three main categories of tracking and measuring your ABM success:

1. Engagement

This metric is designed to measure relationship quality. Information here will answer the question “Are we forming and deepening relationships within our key accounts?” Measure where targets spend time as well as where engagement deepens over time (including at events, taking meetings, etc). 

2. Journeys

Throughout your ABM program, you’ll want to look at your pipeline and revenue to determine how your accounts are moving through their journeys and if they’re converting.

3. Attribution

Are your programs having an impact? Which channels or tactics are contributing to a higher ROI? Attribution reporting will help you determine whether you’re spending your marketing budget effectively, and therefore help you make better decisions about budget allocation in order to maximize overall return.

Even with those areas of measurement plotted out, not all metrics are created equal. Focus on these points when creating metrics: 

  • Comparison – either across time periods or channels, sources, etc. 
  • A ratio – this will provide better insights into relationships
  • Changes behavior – metrics should provide clear and actionable intelligence

4 Ways to Measure Engagement at Your Target Accounts

Essentially, you want to learn whether the right people are engaging with your firm, and whether that engagement is going up over time – leading them closer to bringing in revenue. In many cases, the best way to measure engagement is time. Look at the minutes that people spend on your digital content, interacting socially, etc. When you combine all of these factors, you get a good view of overall engagement. 

1. Track activities

Make sure you’re tracking all meaningful activities for your target accounts. Data sources should include your website, marketing automation, social media, and CRM system. The most valuable time component is time spent with your attorneys, but that’s harder to track. Make a point to develop a process for regularly documenting this time in a consistent way (such as pulling email and calendar information into your CRM). Then make sure to map these activities to accounts.

2. Assign minutes to activities

Document each possible activity and then assign an amount of time to each. For example, an email open is 1 minute, a content download is 10 minutes, and dinner attendance is 2 hours. Account for any activities that are realistic for your targets. Many people find it helpful to visualize these activities with an account timeline. These timelines are particularly helpful to have for quarterly business reviews and for understanding which touchpoints were effective once a deal closes. 

3. Develop an organizational heatmap

It’s helpful to track exactly where people are engaging and with what content. Tally the number of minutes spent in total from each cell of the matrix and color code for their engagement level. You can also do this for a group of accounts to see broader trends. With this data visualization, you can identify which personas are most engaged (darker areas on your heatmap) and where you need to deepen engagement (lighter spots). Use the heatmap to see which parts of the organization engage with you and where you may have blind spots.

4. Measure aggregate account-level engagement

Combine the minutes for all of the activities into an account-level view. Remember that this may not be a simple sum, for example, more senior contacts should carry more weight. From there, track the aggregate engagement over time to view trends. 

Going through this exercise will provide a concise and data-driven way to prove the value of the program and also know where to dig deeper or make changes. For example, in a meeting you can show that target accounts spent 4,289 minutes engaging with marketing this month – vs. last month when they spent 1,932 (a difference of 122%!). Not only that, you can drill down into your visual tools to show industry segments and personas with the biggest growth or areas for improvement. You can also use these insights to identify Marketing Qualified Accounts (MQAs). These are accounts whose engagement is spiking and are primed to be sent over to your business development team.


Traditional metrics are simply not sufficient for building and executing on successful ABM programs. Try these aggregate account-based methods instead. Using these account-based marketing metrics — and optimizing your marketing based on your results — will help you build the most impactful ABM campaigns possible. 

Are you just beginning your ABM journey? Join us for a complimentary webinar, Account-Based Marketing for Law Firms to learn how law firms are successfully deploying ABM strategies.


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