Personalization in Marketing

Personalization within marketing has become a staple in the digital era. 52% of consumers are somewhat likely to switch brands if a company doesn’t provide enough personalization and 57% are willing to share personal data in exchange for personalized offers and discounts1. Follow along as we discuss six ways personalization is influencing the marketing industry.

1. Engagement in multiple channels.

Consumers are engaging with content across multiple channels. A Twilio survey states only “…25% of businesses are effectively implementing multi-channel strategies”. The biggest takeaway from this: you need to meet consumers where they are, not where you’d like them to be or expect them to be. 82% of consumers are engaging via smartphones while 63% use computers2. If you haven’t already, make sure you have a website that prioritizes mobile-friendliness. This simple first step will have you engaging with consumers where they already are. Draw conclusions via market research in order to discover additional channels your consumers are engaging through.

2. Privacy is pivotal.

If you’ve read our recent blog posts, picked up recent AdAge editions, or have been active in the Baltimore Business Journal’s Technology category, then you know how privacy is reshaping the marketing world. Consumers are making choices based on privacy practices, tech companies are changing the way they utilize cookies, and even local governments are taking action in the fight for digital privacy.

In short, companies should not be collecting data on consumer devices without their knowledge and consent. At the same time, 75% of consumers prefer buying from a brand that knows their name and purchase history3. There is a fine line in which your marketing efforts must walk, noting and respecting privacy while simultaneously utilizing data to personalize the experience. To further support this notion, Forbes states: “49% of consumers have purchased a product they did not initially intend to buy after having a personalized experience.”

3. Strategic investment.

Not every approach pays the same dividends. While investing in social media and third party ads often drives consumer interest, you’ll quickly note a lack of retention if your website cannot deliver the level of personalization consumers are looking for. Prioritize your own website (mobile friendly, show relevant products, create buyer personas, etc.) then expand to your additional platforms (often social media accounts) and diversify from there. An analysis by Forbes shows that marketers that deliver personalized web experiences are getting double-digit returns in marketing performance and response.

4. Consider context.

Personalization is…well, personal. Not every consumer will be looking for the same product or service. Your website should interact with your consumer dependent on how they engaged with your brand. If a consumer clicked on an ad, show them that product and related searches (i.e. relevant products, services, or content). If they’ve come via a search engine, present general information such as your services, locations, hours, etc. If every consumer is landing on the same page regardless of how they’ve interacted with your brand then your personalization isn’t personal enough.

5. Not all personalization performs equally.

Tying in with strategic investment, not all personalization performs equally. Consider geo-texts for example. Consumers were more likely to state personalized geo-texts are “creepy” than anything else4. Market research should provide insights as to where your consumer will draw the line, perhaps geo-texts are appropriate but retargeting ads are not. Prioritizing your own website is, again, a no-brainer. The depth and effectiveness of personalization within your own platform far exceeds the brevity a geo-text provides.

6. An interesting thought on anonymity.

By no means is this an exhaustive list of everything personalization is influencing within marketing. One interesting idea to further this discussion is that anonymity can lead to personalization. Promising anonymity to consumers can lead to them sharing data they would normally be uncomfortable with. If you exclusively state you will not create company database profiles with their data, and will instead use the data to internally analyze market trends, you may end up with more information and insight then you would have through traditional direct and indirect tracking methods.

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Article by Tim Coury
Channel Communications Intern


  1. Salesforce,
  2. Adobe,
  3. Forbes,
  4. Accenture,