First, what is personalized marketing? It’s also known as one-to-one marketing, or individual marketing. And according to experts, it is a strategy to leverage data analysis and digital technology to deliver individualized messages and product offerings to current or prospective customers.
Personalized marketing can be as simple as putting a first name in an email blast, or as complicated as selecting various targeted segments and customizing their message or creating content that is deliverable across multi-digital channels to appeal to a variety of targets.
But how do consumers really view personalization and what do they respond to?
According to Epsilon, consumers interpret personalization in this order: 32 percent as customization; 32 percent as service; 16 percent as discounts and offers; 7 percent as convenience; and finally, 8 percent as specific products and services. In the mind of the customer, personalization is many things.
What I found interesting in my research was the fact that when consumers were asked to share their favorite personalized experiences, this was the order they favored: 31 percent loved coupons, discounts and reward programs that saved money; 22 percent enjoyed recommendations based on preferences they had already expressed; 20 percent valued helpful and friendly customer service; and 19 percent wanted the convenience of “saved information like habits and preferences.”
At the root of this, according to Epsilon, is the fact that 80 percent of customers are more likely to do business with a company that offers personalized experiences.
So, given all this data, what should we be doing? Out of the gate, we should be providing a customized experience both in terms of our messaging and the service we provide. And secondly, we should find a way to offer perceived value, whether it be through an actual discount at the time of joining, or perhaps special offers for additional services.
No matter where we are on the spectrum of personalization, we need to be in the game — because it is just going to get more personal with new technology that will be able to predict what a consumer wants before they even know it themselves.
Linda Mitchell is the director of public and government relations at Newtown Athletic Club.