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The top 7 marketing personalization mistakes


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According to a McKinsey & Company report, companies that do well in marketing personalization perform significantly better than those that don’t.

Faster-growing companies derive 40% more revenue from personalization than their slower-growing counterparts. “Across all U.S. industries, moving to top quartile personalization performance would drive more than $1 trillion in value,” McKinsey added.

The top 7 marketing personalization mistakes

According to marketers, there are 7 common marketing personalization mistakes brands are making today that are preventing them from maximizing the benefits of their personalization efforts.

1. Use of incomplete data

Personalization should incorporate a variety of data sources, ranging from zero to third-party data, said Jonathan Moran SAS, product marketing manager.

“Zero-party data (data collected voluntarily and directly from customers) should be combined with first-party data (customer demographics) as well as less valuable second-party data (customer data collected and then sold) and third-party data. (data collected by an entity that has no direct relationship with the sources of the client).

Zero and first-party data is the most valuable for personalization, and companies should use it to form the basis of their personalization strategies, Moran added. Organizations that primarily use secondary and third-party data to perform personalization will often see poor content personalization practices, low response rates to personalization efforts, and low overall value from personalization programs.

2. Not guaranteeing data quality

“To effectively achieve personalized communications, data quality is increasingly demanding,” said Christian Wettre, senior vice president and general manager of SugarCRM, Sugar Platform. “Personalization efforts are often not as effective as expected when marketers are unsure of the accuracy of details. in their databases. Without this trust, personalization is often diluted by generalizing the message.

To overcome this problem, Wettre recommended that marketing and CRM databases be treated as valuable assets and carefully checked, added, selected and maintained. “Successful marketers will systematically validate and augment their data and seek to incorporate third-party intent data,” Wettre said. “When a marketing team trusts their data, they are free to unleash greater creativity and create more interesting and relevant messaging.”

3. Do not profile customers

To increase your efficiency in receiving feedback properly, you need to profile your customers, said Jim Pendergast, senior vice president of altLINE, a division of The Southern Bank Company. “Find out who they are, what they like, and how changes to your store affect how they buy. You can usually track these types of changes using analytics software, which can be a big help in increasing your efficiency. While you can’t help everyone equally, you can provide several options that will work for people across your area.

4. Use Partial View

Personalization can’t be done on a channel-by-channel basis, Moran said. “Nothing frustrates an end customer more than receiving a message on one channel (email) for an offer that has just been accepted (or declined) on another channel (call center, in-store, e-commerce , etc).

To address this, Moran recommended techniques such as deterministic identity management and resolution to join customer data (all types) from all channels to get a holistic view of the customer.

5. Define personalization too narrowly

Likewise, too many organizations don’t consider everything personalization should include, said Sarah Cascone, Bluecore’s vice president of marketing. “Companies need to understand that personalization is more than just a name in a subject line; it’s product recommendations, offers, and channel timing that create true curation. It starts with valuable identification. Businesses commonly use identification to collect emails and phone numbers, instead of capturing the data about buyer preferences that will allow them to reach consumers on a deeper level. Once this understanding is established, companies can move on to measuring the success of their personalization strategy. »

Cascone added that the best way to tell if a personalization strategy is working is if your first-time buyers and repeat buyers are increasing. With personalized automated recommendations, retailers should see an increase in first purchases. After analyzing what prompted that first shopper to buy, businesses can continue to leverage this information to drive repeat purchases.

6. Forget process optimization

Organizations that don’t embed optimization into their personalization practices do two things: they waste organizational resources (time, money, content development time, etc.) and they frustrate their customers, Moran said. “A brand does not need to communicate with an end consumer every day via email or sponsored social advertising. Set optimization rules to communicate with consumers at appropriate time intervals, when it is is contextually relevant. Optimization rules that contain appropriate contact policies and business constraints will help brands get the most out of personalization programs.”

7. Not measuring the right things

Good personalization goes beyond conditional logic, Moran explained. Using if x, then y rules (e.g. if a customer visits a certain product page on my website, send them a retargeting email) is not the best strategy. Personalization should include analytics, where Propensity Scores, Value Scores, and Customer Lifetime Value Scores, among other analytical metrics, should be factored into personalization decisions across channels, devices, and the points in time.