Kevin Lindsay, Director Product Marketing, Adobe Systems @
Personalisation isn’t about one-off wins. They’re part of it, and certainly a positive byproduct of new targeting initiatives. They’re also critical for organisations with less foundational optimisation maturity—you get a win, shout it from the rooftops, and generate the advocacy and internal buy-in you need to take your programs to the next level. But in personalisation, the name of the game is really “ABP”—always be personalising. And no matter the size, scope, scale or industry of your business, ABP is achievable.
It’s a topic that’s been top-of-mind for me and for Adobe’s clients more than ever in the last few weeks and months, especially with the rollout of Adobe Target Premium in June. And now we’re hitting the road with the ABP message, at Adobe Digital Marketing Symposium APAC in about a month’s time. My message to attendees is simple: when the analytics are there, personalisation gets a boost, and you’ve got a solid base for transforming your efforts from ad hoc and incidental to critical, integrated, wholly ingrained parts of every digital marketing initiative.
We’re entrenched in what’s proven to be the most relationship-driven era in marketing ever, and it’s only getting more up close and personal as technology and access improves. Amazon raised the stakes for everyone—if you aren’t offering up a friendly (and personalised) “hello!” when I land on your page; you’re one step close to losing me forever. Take that notion even further, and you’re where we are today—staring back at more than 2 billion Internet users, the vast majority who clearly identify relevant experiences as decision drivers.
At Symposium we’ll take a deep dive and really get our hands dirty with the tactical steps to getting from “wow, that worked!” to “THAT’S going to work!” no matter the existing resources, tacit understanding and organisational alignment—in other words, a foolproof plan for success. But in the meantime, here’s a preview, and some next steps to think on ahead of the session—or for any business looking to create meaningful relevance (and drive increased ROI):
STEP 1: Think about where you are right this minute
You’re likely doing something optimisation and personalisation related. Be it completely incidental (or even accidental) or a simple solution like geolocation based on IP addresses or recommendations based on past purchases, there’s some level of relevance being delivered and, you’ve probably seen a notable impact in any one of countless KPIs. Take your wins and move on to the next step.
STEP 2: The numbers don’t lie
Data-driven optimisation is in—your “gut” is out. It’s time to move away from instinct and focus your personalisation efforts on what’s real and provable. That’s where the analytics come in. In this “last millisecond” marketplace the results of your tests and initial personalisation efforts reign supreme, and should inform every decision, movement, and next step, from beginning to end. The low hanging fruit for beginners? Any major volume drivers—page views vs. entry rates, particularly active “fringe” pages, dominant outliers—as well as cash cows like the homepage and key product pages and, on the opposite end, very low performers. This gives you the 10,000foot overview and helps almost instantaneously prioritise your efforts—high-value, high-performing first, then the rest can follow.
STEP 3: “Relevant” and “individualised” are completely different asks
Your consumers crave relevant, spot-on experiences—they make them feel understood, valued, and in-step with your brand. But how much is “enough?”
The majority of web traffic is anonymous—you don’t know them, you haven’t seen them before and all you’ve got to work with is what they’re telling you in real-time, plus the basics like geolocation and referral source. But “personalisation” and “individualisation” are different—layer in “contextualisation” and “personification” and the landscape really starts to emerge. Start with personas. By bucketing segments into personas based on existing target user bases you’ll be able to suss out a visitor and say “I don’t know you, but I know someone who looks an awful lot like you…” before serving up content, offers or products that are far better than an arbitrary guess. From here you can transition the user to a more personalised experience, as you gain more and more relevant insights into their wants, needs, hopes and dreams.
STEP 4: Contextualise
In the same vein, adaptive, predictive contextualisation goes a long way. The standard context-driven content—location-based offers and messaging, mobile- and tablet-enabled content, adaptive design, and path-driven recommendations are great places to start.
STEP 5: Test, track, rinse and repeat
Personalisation is a never-ending track. The more you put in, the more you get out. And the more you get out, the more you’ll be in a position to do in the future. The cycle continues and the personalisation payoff increases exponentially. Integrating user-friendly solutions like Adobe Target and Adobe Target Premium can put the wheels in motion for you and can keep them going 24/7.