Personalization drives repeat purchases and even increases the potential that your customers will refer you to other like-minded searchers. In fact, an in-depth report generated by McKinsey & Company finds that your marketing gains are likely to correlate closely with the level of closeness you’re able to cultivate with your customer base and target audience. If you haven’t been paying attention to personalizing your marketing game, you’re not even sure where to begin, or you’re ready to level up, you’ve come to the right place.
It’s Time to Get Personal
The major takeaways from that McKinsey & Co report include:
- The pandemic led to a consumer about-face that translates to 75% of us transitioning to new brands, products, stores, and purchase methods that are highly personalized.
- Personalization supports improved sales, and those companies that are growing the fastest are driving 40% more of their growth via personalization.
- More than 70% of consumers have come to expect their interactions with businesses to be personalized, and 76% are frustrated when this isn’t the case.
The jury is in, and the verdict is personalization.
The Twilio Segment’s third-annual State of Personalization Report, which takes the global temperature of personalization in the marketplace, finds that personalization and ROI go hand in hand. Consider the following highlights shared:
- Only a little over a third of companies believe they are hitting their marks when it comes to omnichannel personalization.
- Since 2021, the number of brands that exclusively turn to first-party data for personalization purposes has risen by 6% – landing at a total of 37%.
- Only about 40% of consumers trust brands to use their personal data responsibly.
- About 47% of bands use real-time customer behaviors when it comes to personalizing their communications.
Additional reporting from a variety of sources finds that customer experience is more relevant to overall sales now than it ever has been.
Online Personalization Supports Efficient Transactions
Online personalization helps to expedite sales, and online customers clamor for streamlined transactions. Online brands are leading in consumer engagement, and personalization makes this possible. When brands target searchers with personalized ads, they personally escort them on the path toward purchase. Consider the online shopping experience:
- Online advertising has the capacity to identify potential customers and connect with them via targeted displays.
- From here, personalized emails can be generated.
- This dovetails into an individualized journey forward that comes with personalized recommendations.
- Tracking online browsing habits also allows sites to rekindle purchase intentions related to cart abandonment.
The omnichannel shopping experience incorporates inevitable gaps, which make personalization through data collection impossible outside of completed purchases. In a brick-and-mortar store, the best you can do is use your displays to target an overall audience, and there’s no way to gather data about what specific customers are drawn to – or what they return to time and time again. If you don’t make the sale, you have nothing to go on in terms of personalizing the shopping journey.
Privacy Is Primary
As data privacy laws evolve and tighten, companies are reframing their data-collection approach, which directly affects personalization efforts. Recent data suggest that personalization of the customer experience is relying more and more heavily on first-party data. This information, which comes directly from the source, is not only highly reliable but also more manageable in terms of privacy protection. With first-party data in hand, your brand has the capacity to build a seamless shopping experience that is predicated on a streamlined decision-making process – making it a win/win for you and your customers.
When it comes to personalizing your online marketing efforts, there are some important points to keep in mind.
Personalization vs. Customization
Personalization and customization are distinct from one another. Customization refers to the customer’s ability to choose from available options in the process of customizing a product or service. Personalization, on the other hand, is achieved when companies use predictive technology and customer data to connect with consumers, and it is becoming organic to the shopping experience.
There is no denying that technology’s rapid evolution has changed the way we look at marketing, but this doesn’t alter the fact that effective marketing always comes down to having an in-depth understanding of your target audience. As such, marketing’s future is all about making the experience personal.
Focus on Intent
The more data you collect regarding what searchers focus on when they’re on your site, the more intentional your personalization becomes. Personalized search results can take your bid for relevance to an entirely new level.
The Mobile Sales Cycle
The ubiquity of mobile devices and their seamless real-time integration in the sales process helps drive mobile sales and the rise of mobile devices as payment vehicles.
Upping Your Personalization Game
When searchers land on any one of your online offerings, personalization comes down to leveraging the individualized information you’re able to glean and using it to incentivize individual sales moving forward. The focus on capturing the zeitgeist of specific segments of your market has shifted to meeting individuals where they live – by as creative and brand-centric means possible. In other words, there’s an industry pivot away from the selling-machine approach and toward personal recommendations that lead to sales. Rather than a hard sell, the goal is to start a conversation with your customers and potential customers alike.
In All Things, Balance
When searchers head out on their journeys toward an electronic purchase, the last thing they want is a level of attention from online marketers that borders on creepy. The three primary pillars that support effective personalization include:
- Transparency – Tricking consumers into providing you with data isn’t going to do you any favors, and consumers have become far more sophisticated on this point.
- Accountability – Accountability is all about taking responsibility for your data-collection choices and doing what it takes to right any wrongs.
- Options – Allowing consumers more options as they relate to personalization opens up a two-way channel of communication that benefits both sides.
Get Up Close and Personal with a Digital Marketing Pro
The digital marketing professionals at The Web Guys are here to help you align your personalized marketing strategies with your growth goals. To learn more, connect with or call us at (317) 805-4933 today.