We all understand the power of uniqueness, and in particular, the importance of having a clear value proposition that differentiates you from the competition… but in such a competitive and often commoditized marketplace where similar companies, offering similar products, are only ever a click away… the need for uniqueness has never been so critical to your success. This article looks at three ways you can leverage the power of personalization and stand out from the crowd.
However, before we get into that, we need to look at what we mean by personalization in this marketing context. The internet has made personalization much more possible, as once upon a time, you would create a generic flyer that would be posted to everyone – like a shotgun shell, you would hope that some of them would ‘land’ and resonate with the recipient, but in the most part, they would simply be thrown away due to a lack of relevance.
Today, however, we can use hyper-personalized targeted marketing to reach our exact target audience and deliver a unique message to them. This is huge, as relevance, is the biggest success factor when it comes to marketing.
We are all bombarded by distracting marketing messages and have become almost overloaded with “marketing noise” to the point most people zone out when they see marketing messages; so the challenge for most business owners is that it can be hard to stand out from the crowd, get people’s attention, and digest your message.
The most important predictor to how successful a marketing campaign will be is how relevant the message is to the market, and thanks to tools such as Facebook’s hyper-personalized targeting, this can be reverse engineered so you work out who your most relevant market are and then target these people with total precision.
Precision, however, comes at a cost, and many business owners simply can’t afford to connect with their exact target audience by presenting a message relevant to their specific interests; despite knowing how beneficial and effective this would be in terms of attracting new customers.
The most important thing if you want to stand out from the crowd and connect with your audience is to ensure you are relevant to them, in the sense that you want to position your product, service or company as something that can solve a particular problem your target audience.
Personalization, as a trend within marketing has been around for centuries. In the ‘olden days’ it would be as simple as a shopkeeper getting to know their customer on a personal level in order to understand their needs and preferences. They would use this insight to recommend products they knew their customer might be particularly interested in and promote them in a way that was tailored to their customers interests.
Today, in the much more online focused world of marketing, companies like Amazon use sophisticated recommender engines to glean insight from customers, by looking at their behavior online and targeting recommendations based on this implicit insight. Whilst there are a number of privacy concerns around personalization the majority of web users appreciate a more relevant experience where they feel known and understood by the company they are dealing with.
Today, most email marketing providers allow for an element of customization (such as addressing emails directly to the recipient’s name) but true personalization whereby different people receive different marketing offers can be just as easily automated without much cost or technological know-how.
The point is, people appreciate a more relevant experience, they like to feel known and understood as this makes them feel valued. In a nutshell, the more personalized your marketing the more likely it is that person will go on to do business with you.
With the possibility of hyper-personalization within digital marketing, where you are able to target your exact target audience by filtering a wide variety of factors such as gender, location, interests, tastes, relationship status and even personality types… any company that is still spending money on generic marketing where they are trying to appeal to a blanket demographic is wasting their money.
Also, remember, people buy with their hearts not with their heads.
You want to ensure your marketing reaches their hearts, as whilst they use their rational mind to justify a purchase it is their emotional response that will trigger them to take action and buy your product. For this reason, you want to connect with the audience’s pain and struggle by showing how you can ease this particular strain of emotional pain.
In addition to what you are giving out to customers you’ll want to ensure that all suppliers can deliver in relation to your unique needs. Rather than relying upon mass-produced materials that mean you have to conform to set requirements, working with a company such as the Stern Rubber Company who can assist in bespoke rubber manufacturing, means you can secure a product that perfectly fits your needs
It can be tempting to create a website using a standard template, but this often gives the impression to clients, that you simply don’t care enough about your business to differentiate yourself. You can still build your website on a popular CMS platform such as WordPress, but by having a bespoke theme developed for your company you will create a much more engaging, differentiated, and relevant experience for the customer.
There’s also a sense of pride that comes with having your own unique website rather than a cookie cutter template that isn’t unique, and the cost of this can be surprisingly low. If you were to use something like Freelancer where you can work with highly proficient designers in countries such as India for around $10 per hour, you can have a bespoke theme developed for around $500.
In summary, the power of personalization is apparent. There’s no need to be “different” just for the sake of it… but differentiating yourself, in a commercially valuable way by providing a more relevant and personalized customer experience will deliver an incredible return on investment.