Your customers don’t ask for much. All they want – and expect – is for you to personalize and tailor your messaging specifically to them, no matter what channel or device they are on.
That’s all. Simple enough, right?
Despite this somewhat lofty request, “people-based marketing” is quickly becoming a hot topic for 2016, as brands try and utilize newer, more beneficial customer data to create seamless experiences across mobile devices and stay ahead of their competitors.
However, some things are easier said than done. Marketers today hit several challenging roadblocks on their way to total personalization of client-facing content:
Doesn’t inspire much confidence does it?
That’s not to say that marketers everywhere are melting down in panic. There are companies out there that are starting to get it. According to a study, 58% of marketers currently “do personalization” and 91% plan to use real-time personalization within the next year.
Ok, good start. What else?
Some companies are also turning to new emotion-measuring tech to analyze the results of their A/B Testing and focus groups, and guide their strategy. Other, are turning to machines that actually learn customers’ habits and individually tailor their experiences and messaging, automatically (think Amazon & Facebook). These things are the cutting edge of what marketers can do at present, but they are becoming increasingly more commonplace and necessary as the industry looks towards the future.
Now, for those of us out there who don’t have access to technology inspired by Star Wars or the Terminator movies (learning computers), there are still things that can and will improve your personalization efforts – things that will almost guarantee better results for your business in the long run:
• Use Big Data
Try to steer clear of basic data points – email, name, location, and demographics – as your only tool for personalization. While they do make for a good beginning, industry trend setters (82% of them, anyways) are now upping their games with exclusive use of first party data for a better connection.
Web analytics, Customer Relationship Managers (CRMs), integrated permission-based marketing on social media – these are the tools that are going to give you the best business insights, directly reflect your customers’ behavior, and increase lifetime value.
• Personalize Your Email Marketing (The Basics)
You generally have less than 30 days to get a user engaged and converted. Once engaged, you have to get personal with your email marketing tactics, tailoring your messages to the customer’s individual level of engagement – not general messaging.
Translation: if they aren’t registered with you, send them a promotional email – USING THEIR NAME – to promote your product or service. If they are registered, send them a “thank you!” note for their participation and possibly a reward. Making use of the customer, transactional, and behavioral data that you have to personalize your emails is going to take you so much farther than simple, standard messaging.
• Create Catered Content for Landing Pages
You get ONE first impression with your website. Connect with your individual users by providing content that satisfies their needs. You must offer easy-to-find, easy-to-click content that captures their attention and speaks to the data you have collected about their segment. If it is hard-to-find, easy-to-forget, or just irrelevant to them, your customers will always find what they need somewhere else.
So, what is the point of all this personalization, you ask? Does personalized content really do that much better than standard content? YES, and in a big way too:
Ultimately, the goal of personalized marketing is to build affinity for your brand through long-term customer relationships. By using the right kinds of customer data – the kinds you have right now – you can predict behavior, create better segments and content, and enable more authentic two-way communications between you and your individual customers.