April 17, 2019

Why should you personalise customer communications?

In the ‘Dark Ages’ before data-driven personalised communications came about, and Amazon, Netflix and Spotify simply did not exist, marketing just looked different! Since the rise of Internet 2.0 we have not looked back. Consumers cannot remember what it was like to watch their favourite show only at a specific time and on a set day.

Nowadays we are so used to receiving personalised recommendations relating to music, movie or TV shows that it has become something we not only expect but demand. In fact, Experian’s research on personalisation found that 71% of consumers find it frustrating when marketing communications were not personalised.

Personalised messages create impulse buys

The 2017 State of Personalisation Report states that a carefully crafted personalised message can drive consumers towards impulse buys. The report mentions that 49% of all consumers that have received personalised messages have gone on to make an impulse purchase.

Many companies are targeting Millennials (for a good reason), they purchase more than any other age group. Millennials enjoy personalised communication as it makes them feel valued and unique. Impulse purchases are made by all age groups, although millennials are more likely to make an impulse buy. 63% of all millennials have made an impulse purchase in the last 90 days.

Many marketers believe that women buy more. However, an interesting fact is that men are making impulse purchases more often than women. So, if your target market is millennial males then personalise your messages if you want to achieve higher sales.

Why is personalisation important and how does it affect our brain?

Psychologists say that it is most likely down to two factors – desire to control and information overload.

Personalised messages don’t give consumers the ability to control. But because they trick the mind, they give them a false feeling of determining the process. For this very reason, we perceive personalised messages better than those which are non-personal.

Because of the structure of our brains, they can only perceive a limited amount of information. The quantity of available information now leaves our brains extremely overloaded.  Because we look at so much information daily, we can only focus on the most interesting to us.

It works the same way at a party with people around you discussing various things;  you hear only those snippets that are of interest to you, so you can join the conversation.

When we crafted messages in a personalised way, the information becomes relevant to the human brain. It making it more likely that the consumer will pay attention and engage. If your offer is attractive, the chance of conversion is high.

Even just a small amount of personalisation, such as mentioning the consumer’s name, can improve conversions. According to Dale Carnegie, a person’s name is, to that person, the sweetest and most important sound in any language. We have learned to respond to our name immediately since birth. Scientist studied the human brain response to our name and it has been proven that when a person hears their name, chemicals are released which are responsible for triggering brain activation.

Data and privacy in personalisation

But what about recent privacy invasions you might ask? Well, according to research, it is okay to use data for personalisation if you collect the data yourself. Customers are happy to receive personalised messages from companies with which they previously interacted or purchased. Moreover, it is important that you use data wisely so that your message is entirely relevant.

Limit the overuse of personalisation on purchased data. 67% of customers find it off-putting to receive highly personalised content from a brand that they had never purchased from before. This does not include the use of data analytics to find and target individuals, but the excessive use of data content in marketing communication. Sometimes, less is more!

It’s important that you find the perfect balance. It is okay to use more information than just a person’s name for personalisation. For example, you could look through their purchase history and provide some advice or a solution to a problem, or you could use the customer’s location in order to provide details of their closest store. According to research, the three most justifiable uses of personal information are providing the customer with discounts on items they purchased in the past, offering birthday discounts or informing them of deals in the closest stores.

Cleanliness of data

But it will mean nothing if your data is incorrect and this will cause more damage than good. It is easy to mess up with the name and upset the customer or your customers may never receive your message if they have changed their address. Moreover, unfortunately, people pass away and there is nothing worse for the brand than sending communications to a person that has left the family.

At Romax we strongly recommend that you keep your data clean and entirely up-to-date.  If you are unsure of the current condition of your data, we will happily provide you with a free data audit. Please contact us by email at hello@romax.co.uk or call us on 020 8293 8550.

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