Digital Do’s: Personalized Content

Do you still use “near me” as you search for a restaurant to grab brunch over the weekend or for an auto repair shop when it’s time to bring in your car for maintenance?

The “near me” search was the initial rise of a personal qualifier. You know where I am, so tell me what is close by. Now, with the desire for relevancy beyond location, there is a shift to the “for me” search. You know me, what is the best [product/service] for me? This desire to be recognized and catered to extends further than search.

We frequently discuss how savvy today’s consumer is. Consumers have quickly grown used to the practice of being remarketed to after engaging with a brand or being served content based on interests they’ve expressed. More and more, they’re seeing themselves reflected in digital media. This standard practice by marketers has created an environment where consumers have become privy to content based on their behaviors and now have higher expectations when it comes to the relevancy of the content they are served. It is a demand for personalized content.

What can marketers do to parallel this shift in their efforts? If a consumer has entrusted your brand with their information, the data should be used to improve their experience by delivering relevancy. Personalization is no longer just using merge tags to populate [first name, last name] in an email. It’s thinking further into the consumer journey and tailoring content accordingly. Here are some initial ways to create a more personalized, relevant experience.

  • Know when to exclude and reengage. While it may be annoying to be followed around the internet by a product advertisement, isn’t it more annoying when it’s something you just purchased last week? Ensure that you are keeping your lists up to date by excluding recent past purchasers. “Recent” should be relative to your line of business. Is there a secondary product or service within your brand that should be presented to reengage the purchaser in the more immediate future? Think about the timing and message that should be used to reengage the user based on when and what they purchased.
  • Segment further. Speaking of exclusions… Are your lists just website visitors and past purchasers? Does it also make sense to segment by what they purchased? How about time of year? Purchase avenue? What site actions would also be valuable for your business to measure aside from a full conversion? Building out deeper segments can allow you to identify more applicable ways to interact with consumers as well as allow you to explore different approaches of lookalike modeling for reaching new consumers similar to those already in your database.
  • Tailor content. If data is organized into segments, then the next natural step is crafting messages specific to each group. Content should no longer be developed just against broad personas but, rather, should be reflective of interest and behaviors within those identified personas. The more granular you get with creative messages, the more relevant you will likely be to that consumer base. Spend time mapping out content based on how to communicate with your segmented groups across marketing tactics. Think about retention, prospecting, or upsell opportunity messages.
  • Tailor content 2.0. Think about extending the organization of relevant content to your website. Are there any learnings from measured site interactions to improve the purchase process? Those learnings could be applied to how content is organized on your website. There are even tools available for presenting website content based on the specific consumer segment that has landed on the site. It could make sense to have your site content reorganize dynamically based on which consumer group is viewing the page.

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Christina Hoener

- Author -

Christina Hoener

Digital Coordinator