Personalization is one of the top buzzwords in retail this year, and for good reason.
Consumers are looking for a more personalized customer experience, and are more difficult to impress than ever before.
As a retailer, refining and improving your customer experience will always be your #1 priority.
What does personalization mean, and how can you personalize the experience for your own customers?
Location data bridges the divide between digital and real-world
With the big data gold rush already well on it's way, along with it comes more personalized experiences.
Retailers have access to more of your personal data than ever before. Tapping into that data allows them to create experiences that are custom-tailored to fit your needs.
Searching, browsing, and viewing things online has provided companies with a large wealth of insight into your habits for quite some time.
And now, it's not even limited to your online actions.
Companies are learning a lot about your behaviors, in ways you likely are not even aware of.
That little computer you call a phone in your pocket delivers a treasure trove of all kinds of juicy data.
For example, whether you're aware of it or not, your location is tracked at all times. Tracking your movement tells companies like Google where you spend most of your time.
If you take a specific commute regularly, Google could sell your data to businesses along your route. Now that those businesses know you physically pass by them almost every day, they could start pushing online ads directly to your phone, increasing the odds that you will stop in and say hello on your next trip to work.
That blend of offline and online marketing is omnichannel retail at it's finest. And big data is at the core of it.
These marketing methods will become even more common with the rise of wearable devices and the Internet of Things.
While it may sound creepy, evidence suggests that consumers are coming around to the idea of trading their personal info for a better customer experience.
No longer will advertisers and marketers have to rely on such vague and inaccurate data.
As a retailer, you will be able to learn more about what makes your individual customers unique and, more importantly, what and how they like to buy things.
Focusing on the right channel
One of the biggest mistakes retailers make in this day and age of countless marketing platforms is trying to be everywhere, all the time.
All of these platforms have millions of users, but that doesn't mean they have millions of potential customers.
Take Dirty Lemon, for example. This company sells a unique beverage that they claim is the ultimate hangover cure.
And there's only two ways to order this magical elixir: Instagram, or text message.
Dirty Lemon knows that their audience is almost entirely made up of young people, as they are the only ones crazy enough to still get hangovers.
And where do young people spend most of their time online? Instagram and texting friends.
So that's where Dirty Lemon focuses their energy and resources. On the two channels they know for a fact are filled with their targeted audience.
They could be spending more on platforms with hundreds of millions of users, such as Facebook, but the return on their investment would be much smaller.
When it comes to marketing, having 1,000 engaged followers is far more valuable than 100,000 disengaged ones.
Be personal by going to your customer
It's no longer enough to create a great product, build a beautiful storefront, and expect people to come to you. Today's consumer expects you to engage them on their preferred channel.
Those channels can be found both online and offline. Blending those channels into an omnichannel experience allows your customers to engage with you on their own terms.
Using data to locate and learn about your audience, creating content tailored for them, and pushing it to the channel of their choice will help you offer a more personal customer experience that will keep them coming back.
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