It’s a typical morning. You glance through your inbox while the coffee is brewing, noting which brands are having a sale or releasing a new product. You switch over to Instagram, where you scroll through your feed, double-tapping a photo or two. Finally, Facebook. You see some baby pictures, a few news articles, and some ads for local businesses.
Your day has barely started, and you’ve already consumed a lot of content.
But consumers can only absorb so much—and with the flood of content people are exposed to every day, they will only read, view, or engage with what’s relevant to them based on their needs and interests.
The key to getting your content seen? Personalization. Here’s why:
It Makes Your Life Easier
Recently, I bought a hair-curling wand on Amazon. I’d never used one before, so I watched a few YouTube tutorials before I tried it out on my own. I learned that using a heat-protectant hair spray and wearing gloves is recommended due to the extreme high heat of the wand.
A few days after my Amazon order, I received an email with information about other products customers often bought together with the curling wand, including the glove and the spray. Instead of sending out a mass email with a random assortment of products, Amazon used data from my past purchase to give me a targeted piece of content that’s relevant to my current needs. Not only did they make my life easier, but they also got me to go back to their site and spend more money. Well played, Amazon.
It Reminds You What You Want
You’re shopping online. You browse through a few products on a store’s website but you’re not quite sure you want to purchase right away. So you leave the page, browse some online reviews of the products, research a competitor, and then sleep your iPad.
The next day you login to Facebook and there it is. The exact product you were looking at yesterday is now a prominently featured ad on your Facebook news feed.
Remarketing (or retargeting) ads help to increase brand awareness, gently reminding users that they might want to go back and complete that order purchase.
It Knows Where You Are
If you’re a restaurant owner in D.C., your marketing efforts are going to be focused on your local community. You might run ads in a local magazine or target social media followers who live in the District. Now, with geolocation technology, marketers can take this idea even further to find a customer in-the-moment who is nearby their location. There are apps like Spotluck, where users can find tailored discounts at restaurants in your neighborhood. Or for the drivers out there, Waze ads will show you a discount at a business nearby—and help reroute you to their location.
It Remembers What You Like—And Broadens Your Horizons
Another area where marketers are leveraging the power of personalization is within their mobile apps and loyalty programs. Starbucks proves that loyalty programs can go beyond mobile ordering and tracking your points toward a reward. Now, when customers open their Starbucks app they can see the song that’s playing in their local store and their offers are tailored toward past order history. Starbucks has taken this even one step further with an algorithm that will recommend new products the customer is likely to enjoy. So a customer who buys fruit-flavored drinks may receive an offer for a fruit-flavored pastry, while a customer who buys chocolate-flavored drinks may receive an offer for a chocolate treat.
Putting Personalization into Practice
Personalization is helping the savviest brands reach the right people at the right time and in the right place. What does it take to make all this happen? Your personalization approach will only be as good as the data you have. Now is the time to invest in targeting the right consumers, understanding their purchase behaviors on your site, and knowing the right channels to reach them.