How Are Marketers Capitalizing on Content Personalization? [Interview]

marketing, digital marketing, customer experienceMarketers are turning to personalization to enhance customer relationships, but not all of them are confident in their ability to execute their strategies.

The “2017 Trends in Personalization” report from Evergage found that while 96 percent of marketers agree that personalization can help advance customer relationships, 55 percent believe they aren’t getting it right.

To find out why and dive deeper into research, we spoke to Paula Crerar, VP of content marketing and programs at Evergage.

How are B2B marketers, in particular, using content personalization to their advantage? Do they personalize certain types of content (e.g., videos, emails) over others?

“Email is the most popular channel for personalization, with a majority of marketers (72%) using personalized email to increase engagement and conversions. More than half (57%) are also delivering personalized content via their websites.

Only 18% are leveraging personalized content in their mobile apps. The same percentage (18%) are personalizing videos as well.

[Note: these stats apply to all the respondents in the survey, but there was no statistically significant difference in responses between B2B and B2C respondents.]”

How can marketers make personalization a bigger priority at their organizations?

“When asked if personalization should be a bigger priority in their organizations, 73% of marketers said “yes.” This number is up from last year’s 64%, indicating that personalization is growing in importance to many organizations.

Marketers that recognize the importance of personalization but are struggling to make it a larger priority internally should seek to show senior management the potential of personalization in relation to corporate goals.

Our survey found that 88% of marketers report measurable improvements in business results due to personalization, with 53% reporting a lift of 10% or more.

Among marketers not using personalization today, 41% report that a lack of knowledge, skills or people is holding them back.

We would advise marketers who are experiencing this challenge to take a second look at today’s personalization solutions. Unlike legacy personalization tools, newer solutions are designed for marketers to use, without the need for IT resources and long, expensive development cycles.

If your marketing team is using a marketing automation system, they already have the skills needed to incorporate and manage a personalization solution and strategy.”

Which tools are helping marketers with personalization the most? Do you see this changing at all in the near future?

“Innovative marketers are using personalization solutions that include features for behavioral tracking, segmentation, campaign management, testing and analytics. The most complete solutions offer real-time capabilities and include machine-learning algorithms, to deliver experiences that are individualized at the 1:1 level.

Marketers are also leveraging marketing automation platforms and CRM solutions. What we’re starting to see is the integration of these systems, to gather and analyze data from all of these sources and process it through machine-learning algorithms for a relevant, personalized experience across channels (web, mobile, email and even in person), all along the customer journey.”

What was the most interesting statistic to you in this report?

“In the survey, we asked marketers about their level of satisfaction with the level of personalization in their current marketing efforts. While 53% of B2C respondents were ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ satisfied, only 21% of B2B respondents felt the same. This discrepancy was particularly interesting to me.

Because B2C companies have typically adopted personalization earlier, they’ve had more time to experiment with personalization campaigns and strategies, and have learned how to make personalization work to help them achieve their goals.

B2B companies have lagged a little behind, so we believe there’s room for improvement in this area for B2B companies.

I expect that this satisfaction gap will narrow significantly in the next few years as B2B marketers catch up to their B2C counterparts in their usage and experience with personalization.”

How are marketers proving the ROI of content personalization?

“While some marketing tactics can be difficult to measure, proving the ROI of personalization can be simple with the right solution. We found that marketers typically measure the impact of personalization on conversion rates, click through rates, time on site, revenue and more.

Marketers are able to measure the impact of personalization on these metrics because personalization solutions collect and analyze data, and allow marketers to test their personalization campaigns to continue to improve.

This means that personalization platforms have all the information necessary to accurately and easily measure the ‘before’ and “after” effects of personalization campaigns and show ROI.”

For your free download of the 2017 Trends in Personalization, visit the Evergage website.

marketing, evergageAbout Paula Crerar

Paula is VP of content marketing and programs at Evergage, responsible for driving thought leadership, brand awareness and conversions. She has 25 years of experience developing and managing content marketing and go-to-market strategies at leading tech firms including Brainshark, Dragon Systems and Lotus Development. Paula earned an MBA from Babson College and a BS in management from Boston College.

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