Is Your Online Marketing Personalizing the Customer Experience?

October 6, 2015 / by Paige Gilbert

My daughter wants light-up “Frozen” shoes – what 3-year-old doesn’t? Toddler shoes in size 7 are apparently hard to come by in-store, so naturally I turned to Amazon. Now, every time I log onto Amazon, I’m inundated with Frozen shoes (see below), every kind of Frozen apparel you can imagine, and diaper ads. Amazon has always been an industry leader in doing one thing very well: personalizing your shopping experience. This doesn’t just work for e-commerce sites anymore. Online marketing has become sophisticated enough that any business can personalize the user experience for its customers. There are 3 key ways to do this. Learn what they are in the article excerpt below.

Amazon_homepage_frozen_shoes_screenshot 

Posted on Mashable by Tom Wentworth

3 Key Ways Marketers Should Personalize the Online Experience

The ability to offer a personalized experience online is quickly becoming a requirement for companies to stay relevant, which means they have an important challenge to overcome: making sense of customer data. While data is readily available, it's often siloed within different marketing technologies or across different marketing teams within an organization. This creates a disjointed image of the customer and makes it impossible to draw accurate conclusions. The result is an equally disjointed customer experience.

SEE ALSO: 3 simple tips for winning the hearts of an online community

To connect this disparate data, companies should consider opting for an open marketing strategy that allows them the flexibility to pull information from a variety of tools. The result is a fuller, richer understanding of each customer — and a better, more personalized experience on their site.

Here are the three C's of personalization that will lead to the best possible customer experience

1. Customer profile

Building a strong customer profile starts from the very first interaction. That means pulling in as much relevant data as possible and marrying it to generate accurate insights. For example, at a department store, your customer who's a gardening enthusiast might also be a chef or a soccer player as well. Without building a profile, you'd miss opportunities to share relevant content to this customer — who only visits your brand for lawn tools and paint.

Moreover, your brand should know that a customer profile is never "complete" — it's malleable, building on every interaction. Consider what data contributes to the profile. Demographics like age, gender and income, geographic data and psychographic data like interests, hobbies, and lifestyle (even what device your consumer is using) all factor into building a holistic picture of a shopper.

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mutated_lemonThe “data that contributes to the profile” the author is talking about is also known as your buyer persona. In other words, understanding the tastes, interests, etc. fo your ideal customer. Take the image to the right. Your website is the lemon but designed in a way that speaks to visitors who like kiwi, visitors who like grapefruit, and visitors who like lemon.

You can’t personalize an experience for someone until you’ve identified who they are and what they want. Once you know who the buyer persona is for your business, then that’s when you go after that target market by creating relevant content, and clearly giving it to your audience in the right context.

For example, Amazon knows I’m interested in Frozen branded items. Since most adults aren’t rockin’ the Frozen apparel, Amazon determined I must have a child or some kind of relationship with a child, so it also threw in an ad for Luvs Diapers next to the options of Frozen shoes. If I scroll down even more on my Amazon homepage, I find recommendations for children’s books, as well as books related to raising a toddler and staying clutter free with kids. Well done Amazon, well done.

There are a lot of pieces and parts that factor into what the author of the article calls “building a holistic picture of a shopper.” Some people worry about their online privacy and some just get completely creeped out when they searched for, say, Frozen shoes on Amazon, then read an article on the New York Times website with a giant ad next to it advertising Frozen shoes.

At Half a Bubble Out, we aren’t creeped out at all by this because we know businesses are just trying to personalize the customer experience. More importantly, we know how they’re doing it. If you’d like to learn more about building your buyer persona and using online marketing to personalize your customer’s experience then contact us for a chat!

Discover the Powerful Tools that Leverage Inbound Marketing eBookSince 2002, Half a Bubble Out has been dedicated to providing marketing, advertising, and small business consulting that meet the needs of our clients. We specialize in powerfully telling stories through Inbound Marketing to grow your business filled with more passion and provision. Based in Chico California, we serve clients throughout Northern California and across the country to New York.  

 

Topics: Internet marketing, Digital Marketing

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