No amount of strategic planning could have predicted 2020’s landscape. For most marketers, the onset of a global pandemic won’t have factored into their campaigns - and if it did, they deserve a medal in fortune-telling.
The impact of events stretches across both traditional and digital landscapes, and even the most lucrative of brand deals are drying up as is suggested by Attain’s report suggesting Instagram influencers will lose 33% of their income post-pandemic... equating to around $2,500 a week.
But, you don’t have to pull the plug on all your plants. To mitigate the changing tide, you can look to one particular marketing scheme to patch up your losses: personalized marketing. Let’s get into it.
The rise of intelligent content
With so many traditional channels thrown out the window, teams are looking for new avenues. Econsultancy and Marketing Week found that 49% of global companies have discovered innovations in messaging and branding that may have otherwise been unexplored.
Within that percentage lies personalized content, with 80% seeing a measurable lift in business from personalization campaigns.
So, how do you implement personalization if you haven’t yet?
Customer awareness: reimagined
No doubt you will have seen an endless list of companies ‘doing good’ during the pandemic. While a lot of this activity comes from a genuine desire to help, businesses who are actively doing good benefit from increased brand awareness.
What a customer sees a business doing now will influence their purchase decisions in the future and you want to be the business that is remembered as ‘those nice guys who helped out’.
Although not strictly part of a personalization strategy, it helps to build good PR around a brand. A good strategy involves understanding what your customers want and reacting with tailored approaches to content and marketing that meet their wants and needs.
You can’t personalize your content if you don’t understand your customers, so this is a great place to start.
No more ‘Dear customer’
Your customers want to feel noticed and cared for amongst a crowd of many, so let’s start small. It’s commonplace for emails to be personalized to the recipient, and if your email sign-up form has a field for a subscriber’s first name, you have no reason not to be using it in your comms. Most email providers have this capability in-built, so there’s no excuse to miss this step.
Dig a little deeper into your data
Personalization shouldn’t stop at someone’s name. If you own an eCommerce site, once someone places an order, you collect data. Although mostly used to inform stock checks, this extra info can be used to fuel marketing strategies, too.
You can put it to work by recommending additional items after the sale that serves as an add-on (think: a bird feeder and some birdseed). By doing so, you use personalization to help your customer find what they need, or might have forgotten.
Create rich content to give back
Recommending items is one avenue, another lies in soft added-value propositions. Maybe you have some premium content to share with your subscribers - and maybe the title of that content is ‘The Best Tips To Attract Wild Birds In Your Garden.’ It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that the content and your earlier purchase line up.
It may seem simple, and it is: but that’s the beauty of it. Little things add up to big impacts and set your business apart from the average Joe company that isn’t optimizing their data to learn about their customers.
Personalization can be incognito, too
Done well, your customers might not even know they’re being targeted by personalized marketing. Retargeting does what it says on the tin: it retargets someone back to you who hasn’t quite hit the finish line and converted.
These customers are warm but need a little more convincing. Although you don’t hold any personal data on them like their name or email address, by using tools like Pixels, you can capture anonymous cookie data, and fire out adverts within their browsing eyeline to grab their attention.
Don’t forget location data
As the world begins to open up, some ‘normals’ may be lost. If someone’s favorite coffee shop isn’t ready for customers yet, they might conduct a search to find the next closest option.
By collecting a user’s IP address, you can harness geolocation technology to spotlight the best options, saving them a manual search. You could even let them know if it’s going to rain on their way in. Gestures like these go a long way towards making customers feel comfortable and cared for.
2020 may be the year of humanity, of virtual connections in lieu of physical touch and of companies lending their hand to help an economy at its knees. Personalization in marketing is key to break through the noise. Done right, it can help you sail your business into recovery.