Digital Summit 2016
While at the recent Digital Summit 2016 conference in Portland, a topic came up over and over: personalization. Not surprising, since I have been hearing about personalization from tech and marketing presentations for years, decades even. But funny thing, the meaning of ‘personalization’ seems to have morphed over the years.
The nirvana of personalization is described as one-to-one (or 1:1) marketing, especially relevant 1:1 marketing means customized interactions. This is where my disconnect with the presentations stems. Most of the personalization presentations focused on several aspects without getting to the core.
The Personalization Core
Identify – From presentations on SEO to email marketing to Marketing Automation speakers emphasized understanding customers and data collection. Well it was a digital marketing conference in 2016, so you would be surprised if you did not get this message.
Differentiate – Whether talking about segmentation, targeting or using demographics speakers touted the value of grouping customers to better meet their needs or tailor messages to them.
Interact – Knowing customers allows you to also prioritize the best channel to communicate with them. Speakers covered this subject with presentations on web, SEO, Social, email, video, mobile, and even proximity sensors.
Customize – Finally, personalizing the product or service to the customer individually. Most of all, this message was the missing piece at the conference.
Erik Gets Personal
Erik Gordon of StoryBulbs nails this idea in his recent post. As marketers we need to put all the customer data and learning to its full use. Personalization without customization will not encourage the trust and engagement companies desire. 1:1 marketing is ultimately relationship marketing, but what kind of relationship are you building is you are only segmenting and targeting customers?