Are Marketers Ready for Next-Level Personalization?

It’s almost impossible to find a piece of marketing content online that isn’t personalized to some extent these days. Whether it’s email, social or display, most marketing content is somehow customized based on each target shopper’s demographics, browsing history or device. And that’s for good reason — 85 percent of online retail shoppers are fully expecting individualization.

However, many marketers feel they have only scratched the surface of what personalization can offer. According to a new Resulticks study, “Marketing Flab to Fab,” a quarter of marketers are still only getting started implementing personalized campaigns. In addition, only 20 percent of those with a technology stack in place rate their software’s ability to deliver on personalization as excellent.

The good news for the industry is that marketers are eager to dive deeper. The study also found that 42 percent of marketers are optimistic about personalization, and 36 percent feel energized by the term. Marketers are looking to adopt a more intense plan to truly reap the benefits.

Here’s how these marketers can up the game with their personalization strategy–

Assess Your Data

The answers to these questions don’t necessarily come from more data. The answers come from having the right data. The key is relevance and consolidation — make sure you have the data that meets your needs and that it’s housed in a central location. Then, determine how you’d like to personalize further and which data points will be most useful to do so.

In summary, you can’t run before you walk. Similarly, before jumping into a full-scale personalization plan, marketers need to assess their customer data and identify what’s missing for the kind of personalization they visualize. Do they know their customers’ names, purchase history and who is most valuable? 

Cover the Basics

A simple place to start is by collecting your customers’ preferred names in your database. Then, greet them by their preferred names in your marketing content. When using email, this is as easy as replacing your general salutation with each customer’s name. Once you have this mastered, move on to other channels that might be more complex to personalize, like social or display.

The most successful campaigns are methodical and are developed incrementally. Coincidentally, this also enables marketers to approach personalization slowly and deliberately.

Increase the Complexity

Now that you’ve mastered the first steps in personalization, move on to more complex personalization techniques like dynamically customizing content. This can be based on the individual customer’s last transaction, demographics, psychographics and more.

Customize to Each Buyer’s Journey

When you’re ready, challenge yourself with the personalization of unique user journey. Like anything else, it takes time and strategy to reach the highest level of personalization.

Personalizing based on the customer lifecycle is tough. It requires flexibility to build. Are they new customers? Returning? Lapsed? Collecting this information and then crafting and sending personalized messages based on those key points requires significant manpower, time and resources.

Taking these measured steps over a period of time requires the unification of strategic planning and tactical execution bound by robust technology and creative support. By following the steps outlined above, you will move from the realm of personalization to individualization before you know it.

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