A recent study by The Economist found that nearly two-thirds of companies are now doing content personalization. What do other marketers think about it? Zack "ROI" Williams shares his thoughts.
1.What's a common misconception about content personalization? And what are the consequences of going along with that thinking?
Content marketers have long been told that their audience comprises individuals with different needs, preferences, and interests. As a result, the one-size-fits-all approach to itdoesn't work anymore - if it ever did.
Audiences today expect more personalized content. They want it relevant to their specific situation and meets their needs.
However, many content marketers still believe personalization is too difficult, time-consuming, and expensive. As a result, they continue to produce generic contents that don't resonate with their audience.
The consequences of this thinking are twofold. First, companies are missing out on an opportunity to connect with their audience more meaningfully. Second, they're wasting time and money producing content no one cares about.
If you're still not convinced that content personalization is worth the effort, consider this: The Economist found that companies who personalize see an average lift of 20% in sales. That's a pretty significant return on investment.
So, if you're not personalizing your content, now is the start. Not sure where to begin? Here are a few ideas:
- Using data to segment your audience and create targeted content.
- Utilize customer feedback to understand what type of content resonates with different segments of your audience.
- Use testing and experimentation to find the right mix of content and personalization.
The bottom line is that personalization is no longer a nice-to-have - it's a necessity. If you're not already doing it, NOW is the time to start.
2. What's the most underrated type of personalization currently? Alternatively, what do you think will be the next most successful type?
I believe the most underrated type of personalization currently is behavioral personalization. This is when you use data about someone's behavior - such as their location, past purchases, or web browsing history - to show them relevant content.
For example, selling travel insurance might use behavioral personalization to show a user an ad for your product when searching for flights. Or, if you sell winter clothes, you might use behavioral personalization to authenticate a user with an advertisement for your product when the weather turns cold.
Behavioral personalization is effective because it's relevant and timely. It's also relatively easy to implement, making it an excellent option for marketers just starting with personalization.
I believe the next most successful type of personalization will be predictive personalization. This is when you use data about someone's behavior to predict what they might want or need in the future.
For example, if you sell video games, you might use predictive personalization to show user ads for upcoming games that you think they'll be interested in. Or, if you sell home decor, you might use predictive personalization to show user ads for products that match their current style.
Predictive personalization is effective because it allows you to get ahead of your competition by showing your audience content they're likely to be interested in before they even know it exists. It's also relatively easy to implement, making it an excellent option for marketers just starting with personalization.
3. What's the best example of content personalization you've seen? (Feel free to link to your content and share results attributable to personalization.)
One of the best examples of content personalization I've seen is from the online retailer, Everlane. Everlane is a direct-to-consumer clothing brand that sells simple, modern clothes.
Everlane does a great job of personalizing its content for each user. They show you products relevant to your taste and style when you visit their website. They also offer you products that are popular with other users with similar tastes and styles.
Everlane's content personalization is effective because it's relevant and helpful. It's also easy to use, making it an excellent user experience.
Content personalization is an essential tool for marketers. It allows you to show your audience relevant content, which can lead to higher engagement and conversions. If you're not already using it, AGAIN, NOW is the time to start.
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