Brian Curran explains about customer behaviour very well here. But I want to think about this behaviour in the context of evolving ABM (Account Based Marketing) to ABE (Account Based Engagement). Of course, as a marketer there are many tactics you can deploy to drive engagement; the sophistication of technology now allows you to be laser-focused in your targeting, increasing relevant with your personalisation and connected with clients & prospects with increasingly sophisticated and timely nurturing. But I have heard marketers be sceptical about ABE, as by definition, it is beyond their sphere of control. My view is that engagement is everyone’s responsibility and marketers have the opportunity to be a leader here.

Engagement is ultimately about people, relationships and behaviour. I actually don’t believe anyone would say the wrong thing or behave the wrong way on purpose. But I do think in “high pressure” moments people revert to type. We all do. How many marketers do you know that are too busy to stop, stand back and evaluate ‘is this truly the best thing to do?’ How many sales people do you know who totally get that no one wants to hear a list of the benefits for their product but in a tense moment, before they know, rhyme off a list of features before they could stop themselves?

If you tool the teams in the right way by aligning everyone behind the right approach - a purpose plus delivered outcomes - but with enough room for the team to be individuals then I’ve seen the team energy be truly infectious. They support, learn and celebrate each other; they energise others and bring them along on the journey. In this instance it is their attitudes and behaviour that has changed. Their attitude – their belief in what they are doing has driven that change in behaviour. And why is this important? Because we are all people. Bringing teams together with a simple purpose, clarity of role and a united desire to deliver successful outcomes to customers is something that is definitely within the sphere of influence of marketing, something you can contribute to, if not lead. But beware marketers, it is also something the business can do without you and if you want to remain as equals and drive the successful move from ABM to ABE I urge you to think bigger.