You don’t need to be in the marketing game to know about personalised marketing; our Facebook feeds are full of it while our email inboxes are exploding with personalised subject lines. It’s not a new concept, so why is it so prolific and is it possible to get it right or are we destined to miss the mark?
Yearning for the days of old
Personalised marketing was mastered by the owners of corner shops many, many years ago. Entering the shop meant a personalised welcome, a query about your family and a suggestion to buy the weekly special. Sometimes, if you were regular enough and the shopkeep diligent enough, your usual purchases would be set aside for you in advance. It was personalisation perfected.
Of course, you can still get a similar experience, particularly at your local coffee haunt. Your barista knows your name and your order and will act surprised if you don’t get your regular beverage. For the most part, however, this kind of personalisation has disappeared from the shops we physically explore.
This just makes us chase that experience all the more. It’s why we’re a little wary but mostly thrilled when we get those ads on our Facebook feeds that we know are only there because our devices are listening to our conversations. It both terrifies and pleases us, because we really do want the latest iPhone and having that easily clickable ad right there makes it that much easier to read up on it. It’s why retargeting works so well too — we love familiarity and being on the receiving end of retargeting is like going back into a store and being told ‘We still have that outfit you were looking at earlier — and look, it’s the only one left in your size and we’ve slashed the price’.
Getting it right is tricky
Still, attempting personalisation isn’t all rosy. There are two big problems with personalisation:
- The organisations who can really leverage personalisation are the big players. The ones that have data powerhouses behind them and huge, loyal audiences in front of them. This leaves the little guys lagging behind. Of course, there’s plenty of small ways you can personalise content but without that data, it can be difficult to get personalisation rolling.
- Many organisations have a limited view of personalisation. They think that they can use individual’s names in the subject line or simply curate ads based on interests and call it a day. Audiences are much more switched on than many people like to believe and they are aware that the emails they’re getting and the ads they’re receiving are created by robots, not real people. Oftentimes, it shows in the language used.
How can you try to combat these two issues?
- Collect data and use it. Even if you’re a small business and don’t feel like you have the capacity to do what the Fortune 500 are doing, you do have the capacity to get some control over the data you do have. Get a basic CRM and start to collect even the most basic data on your audience. Names, locations, and purchase history can get the ball rolling for you.
- Speak like a real human. Saying ‘Hey Samantha,’ or ‘Good Morning Jim,’ isn’t going to cut it if the rest of your email is written as though it’s been written by a generic robot with a cookie cutter in hand. Be authentic, let your business’ tone of voice shine through and you’ll get results.
Not sure where to begin with personalised marketing? Email us at http://www.incrediblecommunications.com.au/#contact or call 0414 711 107.