How Personalisation Could Transform the way Manufacturers Engage with Customers.

PersonalisationHG

It's more important than ever for manufacturers to be offering personalised user experiences if they want to benefit from higher conversion rates and increased customer retention. But how could personalisation transform the way you engage with your customers?

Personalisation has come along way over the years, from a 'Hi First Name' tag on your email marketing campaigns to changing whole areas of your site to reflect the needs of an individual. Personalisation has allowed brands to become more targeted with their content, to make their messaging more persuasive and to make the path to conversion more seamless.

Econsultancy’s research tells us that post-purchase loyalty programmes enriched with personalised offers are one of the critical components in encouraging repeat purchases. This comes as no surprise as personalisation itself is all about building relationships and familiarity with consumers as well as encouraging brand advocacy and retention.

“Manufacturers often face the challenge of how to communicate with multiple audiences about their products, whether this is a specifier, installer architect or consumer. Personalisation allows them to segment audiences types and serve content that is not only relevant but contextual to the user’s journey, delivering a smoother path to purchase and increase conversion.” Sarah Dennis, Head of Marketing and Communications at Sagittarius.

It's a pretty well-known concept amongst brands that the right content engages the right people, so it's interesting that while 74% of brands are aware that personalisation increases customer engagement, only 19% are implementing it! And, with 62% of online shoppers expecting personalised experiences and offers, it's perplexing that brands are continuing to fall behind the curve.

Personalisation for the sake of personalisation isn't going to get brands anywhere, but simple changes to your content based on who's looking at it is an excellent place to start. For manufacturers, this might be surfacing different CTAs based on whether your visitors are trade or residential, a homeowner might be more interested in speaking to an agent about their requirements, while a trader will want to hear more about shipping times, bundle deals and bespoke quotations. Other simple forms of personalisation might include:

  • Product recommendations
  • Content recommendations
  • Email marketing personalisation (stories, discounts and products targeted to that audience type)
  • Changing the homepage for return visitors (same as above)
  • Surfacing different CTAs or images

“It is so important that brands continue investing in personalised experiences for their customers. As consumer expectations become more refined, they expect organisations to deliver a harmonised experience across touchpoints and to deliver content and products that match their intent.

“By delivering contextually relevant experiences Home and Garden brands can expect to see an uplift in conversion by delivering a personalised experience against simple criteria such as campaign, device, location and behavioural factors such stage of journey and persona. Personalisations should have a purpose, and as such, we work with brands to define the strategy, deliver implementations and report on successes and opportunities.” Natalie Waite, Head of Sitecore Optimisation Consultancy at Sagittarius.

Now that we know what we could personalise, it's all about how we segment our audience to ensure we're not just personalising content for the sake of it.

It's important to note that segmentation is down to the marketer; allowing them to determine how their audience can be categorised. Personalisation is relative to an individual as it is worked out and actioned by machine learning capabilities.

To tackle this, brands need to start by determining their existing audience types, i.e. traders and installers and who they want to target, i.e. residential consumers. Once brands have a clear picture of who their target audience is, they then need to take a delve into their website content and highlight which content speaks to which audience.

With this determined and your content tagged/identified appropriately, the next step is to use this to feed your personalisation choices. As a brand, your aim should be to ensure that every change you make it going to have a positive impact, not a negative one so be sure to set timeframes, review the data and make changes where necessary to ensure the most optimised of experiences.

"It's easy to get caught in a wave of creating the experience you think users want, based around segmentation that you think makes sense, using the content you believe will produce positive results. Personalising experiences isn’t an exact science, and the best way to reduce risk and deliver solid impact is to test your ideas and your audience groupings, ensure metrics are in place to measure uplift and constantly look to iterate and improve your strategy. Even if it works well, keep chasing better.” Kier Humphreys, Head of Customer Experience at Sagittarius.

If you'd like to learn more about how Sagittarius could support your ongoing digital requirements including personalisation then get in touch on 0208 070 7820 or via hello@sagittarius.agency

Whatever your business, be it a regional or global brand, the content you produce plays a vital role in your success. You know that… hence you’re reading this.

A well formulated and executed content strategy not only drives more traffic, at the core, it defines what your business is and helps build a strong connection between you and your audiences.

So let's quickly look at why developing a coherent content strategy is important and how setting clear goals and understanding your audience will elevate your online performance. 

What is a Content Strategy?

It's basic right? Content is at the core of how you define the way your business presents itself and an effective strategy should look to ensure that tone of voice, messaging and the core values are surfaced across all channels, from service or product pages on your website, to blog posts, through social media updates blah blah blah.

But let's keep it simple - your content strategy should be a clear roadmap that connects your marketing activities to your business goals. Align to your customer’s wants and needs and engage them at every interaction point and boom, you're in business. 

Who are my Audience?

You likely start all your projects with this chalked on the wall because your business knows “exactly” who its customers are right? Sounds obvious but we often find its not been done forensically enough (not based on data), is too old (more than 12 months ago - forget it) or its a spin off from some brand work that was legitimately aspirational but doesn’t face the reality of who you your business is actually engaging today.

So start (or circle back) with audience research, building out those personas to understand their ambitions, their lifestyle, their pain points or concerns, and crucially their wants and needs - in your context. 

Do I need to tailor content?

As part of your research find out where your audiences spend their time online and how they interact with content: Some may spend time thoroughly researching a product or service, whereas other audiences may want their content to be quick, snappy or easily digestible in the form of a video, infographic or short blog posts.

 

Ultimately, the key is to produce a strategy that creates the type of content your customers want to see:

  • What are the problems that your product or service will help them solve?

  • Who are they most influenced by?

  • What voices influence their behaviour?

  • What type of content do they consume?

  • Where do they consume content and engage with brands?

Different Content, Different Objectives

 All content is not born equal: When producing your strategy, it is important that the objectives for each individual piece are defined, that these fulfil your marketing objectives and tie to the overarching goals for your business.

There are various content frameworks that exist to aid content development in this way, but one that is popular and effective is Google’s hero, hub and hygiene method: It provides a framework on developing content to achieve different goals and gives guidance on the effort needed to create each type of content.

Hero Content

Hero content is essentially campaign content, it is big splash ideas designed to appeal to a large audience with the aim of telling your brand’s story at scale. 

Ways of measuring hero include the amount of PR mentions or links from authoritative domains plus social interactions and mentions of your brand across all channels. 

Considering the scale of hero campaigns, this content is not regularly produced and is reserved for peak promotional times where it’s important for a business to stand out from their competitors.

Hub Content

Hub content is the stuff that keeps your audience engaged, it expands on the themes of product or service level content, educates users and helps create a connection between themselves and your brand.

Hygiene Content

Hygiene content is the bread and butter of any website, it is the BAU content for products and services, it is SEO focused and targets important keywords at a product, service or guide level.

How do I manage all this?

Content development is only one part of the ongoing work needed when working with an effective content strategy. We call it “feeding the beast” because it really is the fuel in your brand vehicle and once you start you really can’t stop (if it’s delivering results) but that’s where performance measurement comes in.

Your greatest gift in managing the outputs from your hero/hub/hygiene style efforts is to understand If your content is working. To truly deliver results your business must first understand the objectives and goals of each piece of content to effectively measure its success. That as a guiding light from day 1 will let you slow down, speed up, stop or start new content briefs and projects.

Remember - content strategies are not set in stone. They are living breathing things and should adapt and pivot as insights become available and your brand naturally evolves.

If ever you want to chat content and explore new initiatives we’re always here to help.

want to speak to one of our experts?

 
Thumbnail-Naomi-Harper
Naomi Harper
Head of Marketing & Communications
Naomi is the agency's Head of Marketing & Communications with a strong background in Public Relations, events, Marketing and Brand campaigns.

Naomi joined Sagittarius in January 2021 to deliver exceptional external brand experiences, engaging internal communications and to assist with the driving of sales and the developing of relationships with key strategic suppliers.
 

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