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Personalization: It's What You Know, Not Who You Know

With 74% of web users stating frustration with websites not tailored to their needs (Cream Editorial, 2017), marketers are looking to understand how they make the most of their personalization and marketing cloud technology investments. They start by asking us (their people-based marketing partner), "What have you done with other clients? Tell us what has worked." The truth is, while previous experience is an excellent learning tool, it’s not everything. Each client is unique and requires a tailored approach.

When thinking about personalization, ask yourself, are you making changes in your business to become like someone else - more like Netflix, Amazon, or even one of your competitors? If so, you probably shouldn't be. Don't get me wrong, leading personalization companies still have a lot to give when it comes to lessons learned and culture, but don't execute your personalization strategy in the same way. Why? Because it's no longer personal.

Amazon and Netflix have created their strategy based on their business and their customers. Everything about your personalization strategy should be about your customers. The whole principle about personalization is to take what you've learned and give the customer something valuable in return; that could be a complimentary product, a service message or sometimes that could be doing nothing at all. As soon as we start to replicate someone else, we're no longer helping our customers based on what we know about them, we're trying to shortcut based on what others know about their own customers. 

So where should you start in developing a people-based marketing approach? Well, this is a great opportunity for you to begin leading the race. You can start by understanding your customers and delivering value and experiences that solve their problems based on the data that you have. It all starts with understanding their needs, motivations and most importantly, their individual circumstances. Using what you know effectively can help you drive relevant experiences for all of your customers.

Merkle’s 2017 Marketing Imperatives explore in-depth how to activate your people-based marketing strategy through addressable advertising, personalized experiences, and more valuable customer relationships over time. Visit the Imperatives page to download a complimentary copy today.