Digital Marketing

Personalization in Digital Marketing – Complete Guide


In the current date, when AI (Artificial Intelligence) is taking over so many aspects of our lives, it is vital to establish a human connection with your target audience. The only way to do this is by personalizing your digital marketing efforts because that is the easiest way to reach the masses.

Stats on Forbes indicate 98% of marketers believe personalization improves customer relationships because 84% of consumers prefer being treated like a person and not just an entry to winning their business. It is the scenario for any product or service as customers gravitate toward brands that understand them and cater to their specific requirements by listening to them. Here is where personalization comes in handy for brands. 

It helps contextualize messages and curate personalized offers and experiences as per customer profiles. It is considered an evolution from conservative marketing communications to digital conversations, with relevant data as the starting point. Collecting and analyzing information effectively by following consumer behaviors, demographics, and interests helps create campaigns and experiences that resonate with the target audience.

What is Personalized Marketing? 

When marketers use analytics to create advertising messages and product experiences unique to each customer, it is known as personalized marketing. It is not just about replacing the customer’s name with a standardized marketing email but reaching the right person with the relevant message at the perfect moment and accurate suggestions.

Personalized digital marketing is when you curate strategies based on data collected from contacts, which includes shopping preferences, purchase history, customer interests, and more. By using this data your contacts receive customized emails, ads, and messages, and you are leveraging personalized marketing. 75% of audiences are more likely to purchase your products and services after receiving personalized recommendations.

Some pluses of personalized marketing are that it helps you connect with your audience on a deeper level and helps in utilizing data for targeted and existing customers to offer an effective marketing experience. This way, businesses identify shopping patterns to target potential customers more effectively with higher engagement, increased website traffic, better conversions to paid ads, and overall client loyalty.

Some instances of personalized marketing are curated subject lines and greetings for entire messages. Another such example is product recommendations where you see “You Might Also Like” and click on it. Coca-Cola’s “Share A Coke With…” campaign is an eminent example of product personalization.

Reasons to Implement Personalized Marketing

  • Understands Customers Better

Personalized marketing helps marketers understand customer demands and probable future interests. Without this information, teams may face difficulty gaining insights and predicting trends.

To achieve accurate predictions, analyze the collected customer data through personalized marketing and use it to inform them about new product development, current offerings, etc.

  • Makes your Brand Stand Out

Personalization can also help create brand awareness and make it stand out from the crowd. If you run a fashion brand website and show visitors what they are looking for as soon as they land on your site, sales will be more likely.

For example, a millennial finds their desired shoe brand on your landing page, or a fashionista finds her favorite brand of lip color. They will look no further and purchase from you faster than they would after searching other product pages.

According to an Accenture survey, 48% of consumers left a company’s website and purchased from elsewhere only because of a poor experience.

  • Facilitates Higher Conversion Rates

With precise content marketed at the best time to customers, it can better enable conversions. Loyalty programs can also help better personalize these interactions.

  • Encourages Brand Loyalty

Receiving personalized suggestions and stats through mail or on other social media platforms encourages high brand loyalty in a customer as they feel understood by the brand.

People tend to join a business’s loyalty program, to get more personalized offers and other rewards offered exclusively to the customers in the program. Higher brand loyalty means having long-term customers and an emotional connection with the brand enables through personalization.

Also, Read our guide on Instagram hashtag strategy for a better understanding.

Personalized Digital Marketing Trends

  • Hyper-personalization

Customizing marketing activities and experiences for targeted audiences by utilizing AI, data, and analytics is known as hyper-personalization. This is a trend that is going to be the future of customer engagement in digital marketing.

Businesses with the capability to network with consumers on various platforms, understand their requirements and make accurate future predictions about their wants will win the game. They would communicate and engage in activities to address those needs.

Using the latest technologies such as big data, real-time data, and AI plays a leading role in making experiences relevant and engaging for customers. Netflix and Duolingo are the best examples of OTT and a learning app respectively, that use real-time data to analyze customer behavior and usage by using AI to suggest engagement opportunities.

As per Infosys BPM customers prefer hyper-personalization. Around 80% of them mentioned in a study that they would shop online from stores with personalized experiences.

  • Omnichannel Marketing Experiences

Customer interactions span across channels like email, WhatsApp, SMS, social media, and apps. That is why omnichannel personalized experiences are essential for customers. Also known as social media marketing, this is a powerful method that helps reach millions of people just with a single click.

Reaching out to customers on various platforms and offering them suggestions and offers which are appropriate for that medium will bring out the maximum benefits of personalization in digital marketing.

The main requirement for this would be content availability for different channels and a budget for AI that can be used to automate medium and campaign selection.

  • One-to-one Interactions with Consumers

One-to-one interactions are where customers expect a personalized relationship with the brands that they follow and use.

As a marketer in business, you would know that new client acquisition is a priority, but retention of existing customers is even more essential and costs less than acquiring new ones. You can maintain their interest in your product and services, and it helps increase conversion rates to a great extent.

  • AI-aided Personalization 

AI is a prominent tool that helps understand audience behavior for marketing. Hyper-personalization experiences across channels are possible due to the use of AI in digital marketing.

It can be for conversational marketing using live chats, chatbots, apps, etc., to help automate communications and guarantee a prompt response. AI helps direct customers to have personalized content by judging their past online activities.

Advanced analytics like browsing history and demographics provide consumers with personalized advertisements. Analyzing the emotional state of consumers by studying the voice and images of consumers, also known as consumer sentiment analysis.

Benefits of Personalized Marketing

Personalization in digital marketing is highly beneficial to both clients and the business both.

  • Customer Experiences that Resonate

Connecting on a personal level with a customer makes them trust your brand easily and they feel understood.

Delivering personalized marketing experiences to clients implies that you know their pain points and are working on resolving them. Their customer experience becomes smoother and transforms the purchasing process into a long-term relationship with your brand, increasing your customer retention rates and eventually decreasing the customer churn rate and customer acquisition cost.

  • Increase in Repeat Clients

As a seasoned marketer, you already know that retaining clients is a bigger challenge than getting new ones. Through targeted digital marketing strategies, you will surely gain new clients, but it is personalization in those marketing efforts that will help you retain them and make them your repeat customers. Around 40% of clients say they would become repeat customers of businesses providing a personalized shopping experience.

  • Get a Better ROI on your Marketing Investment

A major drawback of traditional advertising is that generic ads seldom appeal to a vast audience and hence limit your ROI on marketing investment. Personalized marketing becomes more cost-effective here.

Personalized recommendations prompt impulsive buying and the majority of clients are content with their purchase.

McKinsey & Company claims that personalization can deliver around 8 times the ROI on your marketing expenses, and it also increases sales by more than 10%.

How Does Personalized Marketing Work?

Rather than giving your customers a creepy feeling while browsing, by bombarding them with ads for products they have searched for before, there are better ways of personalizing their shopping experiences without being intrusive.

Until recently, delivering pertinent personalized offers and content to millions of prospects across channels, with different content formats and touchpoints did not exist. But that is gradually changing.

How you may ask. It is through the integration of the three Ds namely data discovery, automated decision making, and content distribution is a must.

  • Data Discovery

It involves searching and combining behavioral data to gather meaningful insights about customer metrics which include their preferences, interests, and other valuable information.

This would require decoding a range of information. Businesses usually focus on easily available data. Companies need systems that run advanced analytics to discover practical insights. This will help with the accuracy of suggestions. For instance, if customer “1” does action “2,” send them item “3.”

CDP (customer data platform) a modern version of a customer data warehouse, integrates first-party data with customer-supplied data and their purchase history along with, app or website behavior, marketing response, and engagement information combined with third-party data on customer interests and shopping behavior, to improve personalized targeting.

  •  Automated Decision Making

Advanced analytics models drive automated decision-making and produce inclination scores for customers. These scores in return highlight the chances of a customer responding to a particular offer or engaging with specific content.

Standard data models only produce messages or offers whereas modern automated decision-making processes facilitate two-way communication. These systems collect and track customer reactions and utilize that information for future offer suggestions.

  •  Content Distribution

This is the last and most important aspect that makes personalized marketing agile. A good content distribution system uses customer and prospect scores and then triggers personalized ads and landing pages. This content is then distributed across channels.

For example, a cosmetic brand can suggest products based on the most shopped item in that category combined with the frequency and estimated time when a customer usually shops for such items. 

For personalized digital marketing to give you results, all these “Ds” need to operate in harmony. And for this to happen companies have to integrate all technology systems, through APIs, so that data flows and decisions happen in real-time. This way the cycle learns and adapts in real-time, on its own. This process is like feeding response data from customer interactions into CDP and generating better statistical models getting the highest conversion rates.

If you are one of the few companies that are able to integrate and automate your customer and marketing data platforms then you can track, test, refine, and optimize your findings in real-time. You will surely serve the right offers to the right customers or the hot leads will be diverted to the best salespeople.  All this will ultimately lead to higher conversion rates as compared to the generic methods of personalized marketing. So for better content contribution, we have to analyze top content marketing trends from time to time.

Summing up

Statista says 90% of U.S. consumers find personalization in digital marketing very appealing. This and the above-mentioned figures indicate the importance of personalization in digital marketing and the benefits it can bring to your business by getting new and consistent customers.

Knowing customer behavior like buying and spending patterns, monthly or yearly time of purchase, demographics, and other such analytics plays a significant role in helping the personalized marketing process.

Data discovery, Automated decision making, and Content Distribution are three Ds that drive the core of personalized digital marketing. Though it is not an easy task to track all these along with other prioritized activities, professional help is available in the form of experienced digital marketing agencies.

Personalized digital marketing is the future of marketing, and customers demand highly individualized marketing experiences. So, it is time to indulge your business in deep analytical marketing activities.

Contact us, and we will guide you in crafting an accurate strategy that resonates with your targeted audience and helps you cater to their personalized marketing needs.

Ankit Parashar

Ankit Parashar is the founder and director of ABK Digital, a leading digital marketing agency catering to clients of all industries across the globe. He has 10+ years of experience in marketing, spearheading deal-making, strategic partnerships, sales, and business development.

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