Last updated on July 16th, 2020
In the age of machine learning and Big Data, creating generic content does not cut it anymore. Customers have become more demanding, expecting brands to provide relevant and targeted user experiences across all channels.
According to Accenture, customers are more likely to buy from retailers that know their names, remember their shopping history, and make recommendations based on their previous purchases. Janrain emphasizes that almost half of online consumers spend more when provided personalized content, while 78% of them get frustrated when shown irrelevant content and product recommendations.
That is where digital marketing personalization steps in. It gives you the opportunity to increase brand awareness and loyalty, as well as maximize conversions.
Here are a few simple tactics to use when implementing personalization into digital marketing.
Collect Data and Update Buyer Personas
Collecting, analyzing, and implementing customer data is the foundation of any personalized digital marketing strategy. Your goal is to collect customer feedback and gather their data across multiple channels. For example, you could interview your customers, create online or SMS surveys, listen to them on social networks, encourage customer feedback and reviews, and so forth.
Based on the data you collect, you need to build detailed buyer personas. They rely on two key types of data. The first is demographic data, such as your customers’ age, gender, location, family status, position in the company, etc. The second is psychographic data, such as your customers’ interests, habits, values, problems, and fears.
When starting out, it is enough to create a single buyer persona that will guide you. Over time, as your customer base grows, you will need to create multiple buyer personas that will depict different segments of your audiences.
Your customer base and target markets will constantly change and, to stay on top of them, you will need to update your data regularly.
Segment Email Lists
Your customers are busy. Their inboxes are filled to the brim with spammy emails from brands, offering products and content they do not care about. If you are still sending generic emails to your subscribers, it is now time to rethink your decisions. And, statistics will tell you why. Namely, did you know that personalized emails have 6X times transaction rates?
That is exactly where email segmentation steps in. The mere name of this tactic is self-explanatory – it helps you send highly personalized and relevant emails to your audiences by dividing your email list into smaller segments. Once you collect customer data and create multiple buyer personas, use it to group your customers by their shared needs, preferences, values, and problems.
By understanding the specific traits of each customer group, you will be able to adapt your content accordingly and, in this way, increase your CTR, open rates, as well as conversions.
Based on your audiences and industry, there are many ways to segment your email lists and some of them are:
- Sending welcome emails to new subscribers
- Asking customers about how frequently they would like to receive your emails. This will also help you keep your communication consistent and relevant.
- Segmenting lists according to customers’ interests. Let recipients set the right criteria and choose the types of content and topics they want to receive from you.
- Geographic location: If someone lives in San Francisco, why would they like to receive emails about the events and discounts in New York. By segmenting email lists by customers’ location, you will be able to send them updates about local events that are relevant to them.
- Track users’ open rates. For example, you could reward more engaged users with special offers, such as larger discounts, VIP product offers, beta access to your new app, etc.
- Track abandoned shopping carts. Remind a customer that they have forgotten to complete their purchase and boost your email with a strong CTA and an original image. The idea is to provide help, guidance, and even incentives to convince a customer to get back and finalize the purchase.
Collecting customer data and maintaining email lists manually can be tedious. Fortunately, there is an easier way. There are many tools that will help you segment your email lists automatically. For example, Kevy uses artificial intelligence to create over 30 highly targeted customer segments. Automation will help you save a lot of time and, above all, allow you to focus on more creative aspects of your email marketing strategy. By serving your leads with personalized and relevant content, you will convert them into customers faster and inspire their loyalty in the long-run.
Create Personalized Content
In 2020, we are witnessing the content rush. In other words, content creation will keep growing at an astonishing pace. The only way to get heard in such online noise is to create highly targeted content. Keep in mind that, today, content marketing goes far beyond writing 500-word articles. We are living in the age of virtual reality and augmented reality, where people expect digital content to be more relevant, engaging, and interactive.
For example, you could start by creating strong visual content. Interactive charts, infographics, animations, gifs, and memes will engage users and help them memorize content easier. For example, the Infostarters creative agency has recently produced a series of infographics for Domain.me with custom icons and their brand logo to boost their blog’s visibility and credibility among audiences. The results were amazing, as the infographics generated loads of traffic and earned numerous shares and backlinks.
Quizzes are also an amazing way to engage customers. Namely, you can ask them about their needs and preferences and then, based on their data, recommend the right products and point them directly to their target page. That is exactly what Sephora does.
You could also create interactive videos, those including questions, polls, clickable hotspots. This way, you are helping customers participate actively instead of being silent observers.
Photos on your product pages can also be personalized. For example, you could include 360-degree photos and help customers “feel” your online products.
Provide Highly Targeted User Experiences on Social Networks
Online users communicate with numerous brands online. To stand out, you need to provide them with exceptional experiences. And, of course, the key is in personalizing your social content and interactions. Here are a few simple tactics to use:
- Hire the right customer support reps. Those should be enthusiastic people that innately want to help customers, share their values, and understand their problems. Apart from answering customers’ direct messages, they should also track your brand and product mentions and participate in conversations.
- Keep your customer support services available 24/7. In addition to a strong live chat team, you should consider building an AI chatbot. When powered with an engaging story, a chatbot will not only provide quick answers, but also offer delightful and targeted user experiences.
- Leverage user-generated content. This kind of content builds trust with your prospective customers, indicating that people similar to them are satisfied with your products and services.
- Create personalized retargeting campaigns on social networks, based on your customers’ data. For example, if a customer searches for Christmas sweaters on your website and leaves a site without buying them, your ads should remind them of the content they searched for and inspire them to visit the site again to make a purchase.
- Produce content that will humanize your online presence, such as behind-the-scenes photos of your staff, live videos, Instagram stories, and so forth.
The idea is to show customers that they are valuable to you and that you are eager to listen to their needs and complaints. Never neglect negative feedback. Use it as an opportunity to understand your weaknesses and improve customer experiences.
Provide Relevant Product Recommendations
Product recommendations are critical for website experiences for two reasons. First, they help users find the right products faster. Second, they tell customers that you understand their needs and preferences. Statistics say that customers are willing to wait more and even pay more for products relevant to them.
- Use geolocation targeting. Amazon, for example, redirects customers to the right store so it can offer relevant products and information.
- Recommend complementary products. For example, if a customer buys a dress, you could suggest the right shoes and accessories.
- Personalize your homepage banners by customers’ previous interest and shopping patterns.
- Remind customers of their previous browsing experiences and purchases on your website. For instance, you could have a “You Previously Viewed” tab.
- Personalize popups on your website. One-size-fits-all popups will only frustrate your prospective customers. With tools like Kevy, you can create highly personalized popups, based on your users’ previous interactions with your website.
- Sort products by interest levels. Your goal is to make the most popular products prominent on your website.
Over to You
When strategized properly, a personalized digital marketing strategy will enhance your online presence on multiple levels. You just need to collect customer data and implement it properly. Remember that these are just some of the numerous ways to personalize your digital marketing strategy. This is not a one-size-fits-all approach. You need to audit the performance of your current marketing channels and plan personalization based on your audience’s specific needs.
How do you personalize online customers’ experiences?