[.intro-line]The Evolution of Interaction[.intro-line]
In terms of building trust with customers, digital experiences are now just as important as in-person ones. Many customers even prioritize a brand’s social media accounts more than their physical stores. On a surface level, digital experiences may seem less personal, but the combination of data and technology that power them can create connections that are deeper, more resonant and ultimately more personalized than ever before.
To reach the full potential of the digital economy, brands will need to blend real-time interactions with custom services — but the old model of delivering customized experience to the right customer on the right channel isn't enough to accomplish this goal. "Brands will compete over who has the stronger ability to provide personalized customer experiences at scale," said Sean Skamnes, Global Adobe Practice Lead for Merkle. Brands will now need new technologies and a new vision of the company to master this transformative endeavor.
[.intro-line]Upping Your Personalization Game[.intro-line]
Key to catering to a wide range of personal preferences is getting access to the data that informs what’s important for each customer, and then applying it deliberately. First-party and zero-party data have a clear advantage, and can be driven by the digital platforms and tools you choose to put out in the world. Brands with compelling, cohesive digital ecosystems will dominate in this space, especially as they learn to:
This may sound like a huge feat, but the modern tools and technologies available today make establishing the framework easily achievable. Once you have the right tools in place, you need a sound strategy that includes fluid user journeys, personalized content and a scalable, repeatable model for delivery.
Data is critical — but gone are the days when companies could lean on data alone. And it’s not enough to have a stellar product; all the bits and pieces that surround a company and its goods — whether they’re digital or physical — accumulate into an overall user impression. This impression is the outcome you deliver, but it’s also how you engage on Instagram, the way your app loads, the creative nuances on your site… It’s where the science (data) meets originality (user experience).
Creativity takes on a new shape when you use it to understand what the data is telling you, and to deliver marketing efforts that start with the user’s perspective, and lean on empathy, understanding and design-thinking to drive decisions. That means building a strategy focused on:
When you strategically plan customer journeys, it becomes easier to deliver a safe, personalized and satisfying experience to customers. The result: customer satisfaction, increased conversions, and customer retention.
When you build creative, relevant content, you build customer trust — which can scale. Brands can achieve content velocity by connecting all phases of content production together and transforming assets for delivery across different screens, devices, or channels.
When you create websites, platforms and apps that are true destinations, you remove barriers and friction. Companies that do this achieve greater stickiness and higher conversion rates.
When you care about the big picture, you inspire loyalty. Companies that shine here may build their digital ecosystem one piece at a time, but they’re considering the big picture and the influence of each piece on the others along the way.
[.intro-line]Creating an Engine[.intro-line]
At Narwhal, we’ve created personalization engines for a wide variety of clients at varying levels of fidelity. After all, evidence shows that 80% of consumers are more likely to buy from a company that provides a tailored experience. For one large B2B software provider, we customized how Wordpress functions with Marketo to drive increased leads — and the rapid achievement of their sales goals. In this case, our approach and strategies have contributed to this company’s growth and success over the course of a long relationship of innovation and optimization.
From our perspective, in a world where 70% of consumers say that how well a company understands their individual needs impacts their loyalty, delivering some form of personalization isn’t really optional — but putting it in place also doesn’t have to be an insurmountable task. If you’re interested in understanding how personalization can work for your company, reach out. We’d love to share our thoughts and experiences.