3 Unique Ways We Utilize Personalized Content with Examples

In content marketing it is getting harder than ever to grab your audience’s attention utilizing generic material. By personalizing your content, you are more likely to engage your targeted customers. In this blog, we’ll break down 5 ways we have utilized personalized content with examples:

What is personalized content?

You will know if they are a man or woman, their age, location, and even their interests. Which helps you better connect with your customers and drives engagement.The numbers don’t lie — personalization is what shoppers want.

 Around 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with companies that present them with personalized offers and recommendations. And around 74% of online shoppers are frustrated when web content doesn’t target their interests.

In order to be successful, every brand needs a strategy that delivers targeted personalized content and relevant information to consumers to increase their likelihood of engaging with your company.

You can do this by looking at the available data about each visitor to your website or social media page. The information available ranges from their keyword searches and buying history to information they might provide, such as location, age, and gender. When pulled together, this data helps paint a picture of each customer’s interests and needs, so you can share content that speaks to them. The result is higher sales and increased engagement.

About half of the retailers that personalize their marketing content see a 300% ROI over the course of their relationship with a consumer. Other industries have seen an increased ROI due to content personalization, as well.

Segment Your Audiences

There are different ways you might segment your audience when creating personalized content. Machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) have made it easier than ever to mine information about your customers and web visitors. Then, based on where they fall within the lists you’ve created, you can optimize their content to address their personal interests and buying habits.

Here are a few common demographic factors used to segment audiences:

Location

Using location-based marketing, you can target customers who live in specific areas. For instance, if you have noticed your customers are primarily from the east coast, you can target web visitors in major cities such as the New York metropolitan area.

Insider tip: A shopper’s location also provides additional information about them, such as the weather or season they are currently experiencing.

Age

Knowing your visitor’s age gives you additional insight into who they are as a consumer. For example, millennials, Gen Zers, and younger generations are more likely to shop online, so you should drive them to make their purchases through your social sites or directly to your website.

Gender

Marketing based on a consumer’s gender can also help drive sales. Be careful, though, as this can be tricky. The interests of men and women tend to overlap more these days.

Stage in the Sales Funnel

Our goals seven main stages in a customer’s sales process when it comes to digital marketing:

The overall goal of each stage is to move the consumer toward the bottom of the funnel, where they make a purchase, and, hopefully, start a long-term relationship with your brand.

Our 3 Types of Personalized Content:

  1. Interactive Surveys and Quizzes  
    a. Everyone loves interactive surveys on social media and your website, making them an excellent content marketing tool. The interactive nature of these surveys lets users personalize the content presented to them.
    b. These surveys have different features, functions, and content, based on the curated data pertaining to the specific consumer.
    c. Our example: An Interactive Quiz- Chronic Wasting Disease Quiz | Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (trcp.org) engages the end-user and helps evaluate your audience. 
  2. Retargeting ads on Social Social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook make it easier than ever to deliver personalized content to your target audience. Curated campaigns are beneficial to your brand. They create awareness, boost traffic to your site and increase sales. We recommend targeting specific audiences based on various demographics, including age, gender, location, and specific interests.
    a. You can also retarget current customers or audiences that have visited your site before. Facebook states, “If your business is using retargeting to find people who have visited your physical store, or if you have collected customer contact information through a CRM, you can create a list to reach these people with ads.”
    b. Retargeting is a great way to get a second chance at selling to recent visitors.
    c. We helped understand Pond King’s audience in their buyer’s journey through targeted ads. See their success here.
  3. Personalized Emails Today email marketing is less about promoting your offers and products/services and more about giving the subscribers a personalized experience that serves their needs. When the emails speak about what the subscriber desires, they are more likely to engage with them
    a. We recommend segmenting your audience so you can target your subscribers with specific email campaigns. Personalized content is more likely to resonate with your audience, which drives consumers to your website so they can make a sale. Or better yet, they share their customer experience on social and tell their friends/followers about your quality brand.
    b. For example, Spotify sends users a personalized Discover Weekly playlist based on what they have been listening to, their likes, and dislikes. This email re-engages users and gets them to sign into their app again.
    c. Personalization increases the likelihood of your recipient opening an email from you, and it is something anyone can benefit from, as well. For instance, when sending an email to those on your specific list, you can add a personal touch by pulling the recipient’s first name into the subject line.
    d. After creating personalized messages for Leupold’s email campaigns we saw an increase in their open rates and sales doubled.
    e. After understanding who Pond King’s audience is and what they care about we were able to send them personalized, targeted emails about products and services they want to learn about. This resulted in higher opens and click-throughs on all their emails.

How We Personalize the Customer Journey and Map It

Want to drive more traffic to your site and social accounts? Put yourself in the customer’s shoes. Customers are on a journey. From the moment they first learned about you to their first purchase, every step leads to a curated path. As a digital marketer, it’s your responsibility to drive them to your desired conversion path – the customer journey.

Personalizing your brand’s customer journey leads to a great customer experience. Which is why all your created content, ‘everything you send them’ needs to be relevant to their specific needs. 

Do this and you’ll see results. Being higher website traffic, better performing emails, and of course more sales with returning customers. 

In fact, 96% of organizations believe that email personalization can improve email marketing performance.  And the open rate for emails with a personalized message was 18.8%, as compared to 13.1% without any personalization.

What is customer engagement?

According to Google,

This kind of interaction takes place on multiple channels, not just at the point of sale. For example, companies can engage with customers through the following platform.

It’s important to track the customer journey, for this process to be a success.

Here’s our example of a customer journey. 

Creating a customer journey ensures that brands are available at the necessary touchpoints where a customer may need to be engaged.

It also helps brands understand who their target audience is and what they need to do to extend one sale into multiple opportunities.

What are the components of a customer journey map?

Next we need to look at what’s happening at each stage. Here’s the framework we like to use:

  • Customer personas: A buyer persona is a representation of your target customer based on detailed market research. It includes demographics such as age, gender, job title, etc. Each buyer persona has separate buying behavior. This is why you need to create a different customer journey map for each persona. The persona information you’ve already collected helps you map out a customized journey for that particular buyer persona.
  • Funnels: Before mapping out the customer journey you need to figure out the stages your customer goes through to come into contact with your brand. Better known as the marketing funnel which consists of – awareness, consideration, decision, and retention.
  • Understanding your customer: You need to understand the goal your customers are trying to achieve at each stage. Collect data through surveys on the website and through emails. Then you can align the information with the customer journey touchpoints.
  • Identify touchpoints: Touchpoints are the interactions the customer has with your brand at each customer stage on specific web pages or ads. For example, awareness stage touchpoints are likely to include short-form landing pages, testimonials, your blog, etc. 
  • Consider your customer’s emotion: The client’s journey is told from the customer’s perspective. So, keeping into consideration which emotion (whether delight or frustration) your customer is likely to feel helps you ensure they will move from one stage to the other.

Then put yourself in their shoes…
Actions:
What is the customer doing at each stage? What actions are they taking to move themselves on to the next stage?
Motivations: Why is the customer motivated to keep going to the next stage? What emotions are they feeling? Why do they care?
Questions: What are the uncertainties or other issues preventing the customer from moving to the next stage?
Barriers: What structural, process, cost, implementation, or other barriers stand in the way of moving on to the next stage?

5 tips to be on track for personalizing your content:

1. Take into consideration a customer’s past experience

One effective way to know what your customers want is by checking their history. Look at their previous interactions and transactions with you to find patterns.

For example, you can set up triggers in your email marketing software for customers who frequent a certain product page. Their returns indicate intent to buy, and they may only need a little push to make a purchase. Create a funnel that triggers a personalized email containing offers on the products they visited. It will be automatically sent to them after their, for example, the fifth visit.

Insider tip: If you want to upsell, review their past purchases so that you would have an idea of which related offers are most likely to appeal to them.

2. Extract as much psychographic data as you can

We utilize psychographic data to find a deeper understanding of the customer. Our curated survey extracts information about a person’s values, attitudes, interests, and personality traits that are used to build a profile of how an individual views the world, the things that interest them, and what triggers motivate them to action.

To gain more insight on Heaven’s Trail (a high-end line of tree stand, tools, and installation processes) audience we asked for curated content pertaining to their pain points. For example:

How would you describe your last tree stand installation?
– It was easy.
– It was difficult.
– I leave my stands in the tree so I never have to install them again.

Collecting valuable customer data should start as early as when customers sign up for your emails or follow you on social. Apart from the name and email address, ask for information that will help you know more about them such as location, birthday, interests, industry, and more. Be sure that the amount of information you ask for in your sign-up form must be reasonable. Keep it short and sweet because sign-up can turn off customers.

For existing customers, you can send a survey email or create a survey landing page that aims to extract more information about them. You can motivate them to send a response with incentives such as special offers and discounts. 

Insider Tip: Your customer’s IP address can also help you determine location so that you can send location-based offers.

3. Send a personalized note on holidays and their birthday

Customers feel valued when they are remembered on holidays or special occasions like birthdays. Take this as an opportunity to make your bond stronger.

In your email marketing sends, you can automate a birthday message to customers on their special day. Make it more special with a birthday gift such as exclusive discounts they can utilize on their day. Holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day are a great way to personalize your content for any type of campaign. Your options are limitless. Just to give them a reason to celebrate.

Insider tip: Make your emails even more personalized by adding their first name in your subject line. 

4. Create funnels based on customer behavior

Now the customer knows who you are and what solution you have to offer. However, they are still considering whether you are the right choice. 

The online behavior of customers tells us whether they are ready to buy or are still weighing their options. With advanced marketing software today, it’s now possible for brands to set up triggers to send personalized emails that match their website journey. It also allows you to automatically add customers to a workflow based on how they interact with you so that you can nurture them further.

A common triggered email for eCommerce sites is shopping cart abandonment email. Here, customers get a promotional email containing discounts on the items they abandoned.

For customers who click on your CTA, you can automatically add them to a workflow designed for those who are ready for conversion. On the other hand, lapsed customers who have been disengaged for months can be automatically sent with a series of re-engagement emails.

At the consideration and decision phase, you need to separate yourself from the competition. Make it clear to customers why you have the winning edge over the competition and why they should make a decision in your favor.

5. Testimonials from customers are KEY to knowing what worked

Once the customer passes through the conversion stage, the retention phase begins.

The retention stage is an on-going phase and lasts till the customer decides they no longer wish to remain your ‘customer’. The primary touchpoints used in the retention stage are your support landing page, product page, email and blog. Reaching out to customers to ask how they are doing is part of their journey. Customers feel that their voice matters when you take time to listen.

Using survey landing pages and emails, ask how their experience was with you. Use this opportunity to know which aspect of your brand needs improvement. You can also ask them if they find your business recommendable to their friends and colleagues. Keeping an open relationship with your customers is healthy for your brand and for their journey.

There is no single right way to create a customer journey, and your own brand will need to find what works best for your particular situation.The framework and tips provided above should give you a good head-start at better understanding the journey that your customers travel through as they engage with your brand, products, and people.

With the right amount and usage of customer data combined with targeted strategies, you can pull it off like a digital marketing pro.