What B2B marketers need to know about personalization and tech
As we’ve written about in the past, personalization has been growing and changing for years. It went from in-person sales reps catching up with a customer face-to-face to phone calls to a rapid progression toward all things digital. Fast-forward to today, and personalization is in full swing in its next iteration, a movement in which customers are made to feel known and valued. But, which personalization tools power this - and how do they work together? Here’s a look at the three levels of personalization as we see them, and how different solutions fit into the puzzle.
Level 1: We See You
Think of the first level of personalization as the one you probably encounter daily. “Hi John!” your email begins, or you get a piece of direct mail with your company name printed at the top. This is the result of merge fields, which certainly have their place - but it’s no longer at the head of the table. Using someone’s name or other basic demographic information is personalization at a very surface level. It shows you see them, which is a great start, but not really enough in today’s day and age.
If this is the type of personalization you want to achieve, the best place to get going is via your marketing automation tools. Whether you use Marketo, Pardot, Eloqua, HubSpot, or something else, you can quickly and easily start personalizing your emails and other marketing campaigns in this way.
Level 2: We Know You
This next level goes deeper. By using intent data tools like Demandbase, 6Sense, or Bombora, you’ll gain access to an otherwise invisible part of your buyers’ journey. You’ll be able to identify their online activities and figure out what their pain points are.
When you can effectively speak to their pain, you’re personalizing at an elite level. Not only does the buyer know you see them, but they also feel like you know them. You get them and, when you can get them, you can help them
Level 3: We’ve Created a Hyper Relevant Experience for You
Finally, the third level of personalization is all about creating a relevant experience. It’s not about personalizing the content assets themselves, but rather personalizing the destination at which the buyer ends up by curating relevant content. Let’s say you’re running a 1:many ABM program for financial services and you want to create a content stream that caters to people at the awareness stage of their journey
You might have 1,000 pieces of content at your disposal, but a tool like Uberflip can enable you to only present the pieces relevant to those at the awareness stage. It also allows you to personalize the experience further, by including the company’s logo, matching their industry and surfacing personalized messaging for each account. This can take the form of a welcome message, or a description of the content that your audience is viewing to help set context. It’s an intentional, personalized curation of the most relevant and valuable pieces of content that truly speak to the buyer at that moment. Best of all, Uberflip is designed to help users create these experiences at scale, which is critical to repeatability and success.
At this level, you can also use a tool like Optimizely (we do!) to handle your A/B testing and help you, you guessed it, optimize your content destination. The beauty of advancing through these levels of personalization is that all of these solutions are part of an ecosystem.. They’re supposed to work in harmony, and they work best in that capacity.
As personalization has evolved, the industry has graduated from merge fields alone into more nuanced methods like personalizing the channel (e.g. email, ads, etc.). And now, the next evolution of personalization that buyers are expecting is personalizing the final destination and experience a buyer is being sent to. This is what a content experience platform (CEP) like Uberflip is all about.
You can certainly start with simplistic personalization efforts, like those in Level One, in which case you won’t need a personalizer app at all. But if you want to deliver a true experience, which is increasingly what customers want and expect, you’ll need to bring together all three of the levels outlined here. By doing so, you’ll create cohesive, dynamically personalized and relevant content destinations for your target accounts that will help you close more deals and increase speed to revenue. Any questions? We’d love to chat.