Recommendation engines, also called personalization engines have become a way for online businesses and ecommerce platforms to differentiate their customer experience using one to one marketing and set themselves apart as companies that embrace technological changes and use them right. When it comes to omni-channel marketing with personalization and recommendations, there’s one challenge: How can businesses use every channel right to create an enjoyable, seamless experience for users that encourages conversions?
Why is it important to reach customers across channels?
The customer today isn’t just on the web or mobile, but on a number of channels with varying levels of engagement on every single one. The goal of a marketer is to learn which channel works best for which customer and reach them there. One to one marketing is all about context, and what the customer prefers. If a customer likes getting push notifications on the web but hates it on the mobile, you need to understand this from their engagement history and change how you communicate with them.
Email marketing is an area where one to one marketing can set a brand apart. Your brand’s email newsletters and promotional campaigns move from being one-size-fits-all campaigns to niche, informative pieces of communication with the use of a personalization engine. You can also use a recommendation engine to get more personal with your engaged customers.
Image: Skirt Sports
If a customer abandons a cart, you could trigger a campaign offering a discount or reminder about the cart with recommendations personalized for the customer. You can also do this as part of a rate-and-review program once a customer buys a product the way Skirt Sports does in the image above. Using a personalization engine right can give you a 2.5x rise in click-to-open rates
Ever since messaging platforms like Whatsapp and Faceboook messenger became so widely used, text messages (SMS) have taken a bit of a backseat for personal communication. Businesses primarily use text messages to send you transactional messages and order statuses when you are expecting a delivery.
Although personalizing recommendations isn’t a new idea the SMS world, it still has a long way to go, especially since the call-to-action in an SMS is difficult to convert from. Personalizing transactional and order related messages is a first step to one to one marketing via SMS.
An in-app messenger is a great way to reach customers as they spend time on your website. This way, you already know that they are engaged and interested in a certain topic or product. If you reach out now with an offer or a relevant piece of information, chances are they’re going to think “wow, I was just thinking about looking for this” and proceed to click or buy.
So you don’t just have engaged customers, you have engaged customers who trust your taste and recommendations and even look forward to receiving them when they are on your website – exactly what one to one marketing in all about. With an in-app messenger, you are also starting up a conversation and giving customers the option to respond, which makes customers happy, very happy.
Push messages are all about timing. One to one marketing is also all about timing. So, even though push messages are a powerful way to reach your customers, it’s important to follow some basic protocol before you begin sending them. Push notification opt-ins for web and mobile are great ways to do this. Once you know a customer wants to receive messages from you, you can start getting personal.
This awesome message from Sprig is personalized so well that you almost don’t realize how much information has gone into it. The message takes into account factors like
- What you ordered in the past
- The fact that you ordered the dish more than once.
- Possibly – How you tried to order once and were told it wasn’t available.
- Possibly – The fact that you haven’t ordered from the establishment in a while.
All this in one three line push notification. That’s good one to one marketing right there.
Granted, onsite messages can be a little annoying at times. But they can actually be a great way to grow your conversion rate. One to one marketing is all about talking to customers with relevance and context, so that is one of the most important things to remember when creating an onsite lightbox.
You need to keep in mind what page the customer may be on, how long they spent on it etc and use these behaviours to trigger the lightbox at the right time. Brenthaven’s lightbox powered by Boomtrain only opens up on clicking, but it has already give them a 3% rise in subscribers over the course of a few months.
What are the channels that you have found most effective for one to one marketing?
Share your experiments and results with us.