Today’s consumers not only enjoy content personalization—they expect it, too.
Yet far too often we think that adding
In this article, we look at why personalization matters and how you can start implementing personalization throughout your customer journey.
Personalization is about reducing the noise and delivering exactly what your customer or client needs to hear.
This allows you to create a deeper and more meaningful connection with the people you are trying to reach.
From a business perspective, personalization has a tremendous return on investment (ROI).
Research from Epsilon found that 80% of customers are more likely to make a purchase when companies use personalization in their content.
And according to a Google study, a highly personalized shopping experience means customers are 40% more likely to spend more than they originally planned.
If you want to create powerful content that will delight and engage your customers, personalization is key.
Metadata is the key to personalization
The backbone of any personalization strategy is data.
Metadata is simply information about your data. Why is that important?
Well, to personalize content, you need to connect your customers to the right content, which means you need data about customers and content.
Once you’ve collected customer data, you can use that information to create custom content.
The more information you have about our content, the easier it is to target it to the right audience.
One way to do this is to tag your content with information like audience, persona, funnel stage, and campaign.
You can tag content in many CMS (content management systems) such as HubSpot.
Email is a great place to start personalizing content.
Adding first names to email subjects is a common place to start, but there’s so much more you can do.
Let’s look at some examples.
When a tech company sends out a marketing email to their entire email list to promote a sale, that’s pretty good.
But what would be better would be sending promotional email to different groups based on their persona. This allows you to personalize content based on interests.
Instead of sending a generic “thank you” email after someone downloads a resource, send them an email suggesting more content to download based on what they downloaded.
We sent this email to potential customers who might be interested in this white paper based on their persona.
With some basic analysis, you can find out which websites your potential customers spend the most time on.
And if they provide an email address for a newsletter or download, you can follow their exact journey on your website.
This data allows you to create personalized emails, specifically targeting the information they interact with.
Well, this strategy isn’t scalable and it would take way too much time to track each and every prospect.
But for B2B companies, it pays to analyze your prospect’s journey and note potentially large and targeted customers.
A few well-placed emails to an already interested prospect can make a big difference.
If your business is international, you can create marketing emails that reflect your customers’ local seasons and holidays.
Simply recognizing your customers is more important than trying to recognize every vacation on the planet Not all live in the same area.
I would suggest that sending a “Welcome Summer” email to your Australian customers in early June is actually a form of personalization.
Instead, make sure any references to holidays, sports, and weather are relevant to the location you’re sending the email to.
This is a great way to show you understand the global nature of your business.
Instead of offering customers all of your products or services, help them discover content that focuses on what they’re already interested in.
This could be as simple as asking what topics they would like to learn more about via an email signup form.
You can also use data about what your customers have already bought, what pages they’ve viewed, and what videos they’ve watched to set up an interest-based workflow.
Here’s an example of a marketing email we sent out after a conference. Based on the link the recipient clicked, they were put into a workflow tailored to their interests.
Personalization of content based on personas is especially important for B2B companies.
The message we use to communicate with C-suite professionals is different than how we present our message to technical writers.
Your different audiences have different challenges and pain points.
Hopefully you already have this in mind when creating your content and tagging accordingly.
Once you’ve done that, you can easily assemble content for each persona and create an email sequence that speaks directly to them.
Personalization of website content
journey of the buyer
Do you know where your prospects are on the buyer’s journey?
Someone who is just hearing about your product for the first time will want different information than someone who is in the middle of researching possible options.
You need to make sure you create a variety of content that goes from the top of the prospect to the bottom of the funnel.
Once you create this content, you can share it with the appropriate audience. One way to do this is to suggest other articles to read that are destined for a similar spot in the funnel.
Calls-to-action (CTAs) provide your prospects with a clear way to act on your content and move them through the funnel.
You should test different CTAs and see which ones work best.
You can use custom CTAs to provide a highly personalized action step.
This first example is a simple CTA. It’s good, but it’s very general.
This CTA is personalized. We know Jim is particularly interested in laptops, so we’re personalizing the message for him.
Creating custom content can seem overwhelming at first. So it’s best to pick one area and test it until you know what works well for your business.
And there are many tools you can use to enable personalization of your content, such as: keystone, recombeeand Algolia.
The editors also recommend Piano Analytics + Activation.
Start solidifying buyer personas and building contact lists based on them. From there, you could easily create a segmented email campaign.
You’ll soon be on your way to creating better customer experiences.
And once you start seeing the power of personalization in your content, you’ll never go back.
Featured Image: Mix and Match Studio/Shutterstock