Are marketing automation and personalization elkaars tegenpolen? Marketing automation is het gebruik van technologie om marketing campagne taken en -processen automatisch uit te voeren. In het licht hiervan is de aantrekkingskracht van marketing automation meteen duidelijk. Door repetitieve taken via communicatiekanalen te automatiseren – e-mails, sms, site berichten, enz. – besparen bedrijven tijd, verhogen ze de productiviteit en verhogen ze de efficiëntie. Bovendien strekken de voordelen van automatisering zich ook financieel uit. Volgens Annuitas Group leidt het gebruik van marketingautomatisering tot een toename van 451% in het genereren van leads. Uit een ander onderzoek van Invespcro blijkt dat 77% van de bedrijven die marketing automation gebruiken, meer conversies genereert.
On the other hand, personalization focuses on creating content, products and services that are highly relevant to an individual. So it concerns promotions ranging from product recommendations to offering discounts and special offers. In a Segment study, 71% of customers said they were frustrated by impersonal experiences. Customers crave a personal touch and 95% of the companies that meet that need triple their ROI within a year.
The statistics above show the importance of marketing automation and personalization. Now to answer the first question. While the differences are obvious, these two practices are not exactly opposites. This means that they can – and should – coexist.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF BOTH MARKETING AUTOMATION AND PERSONALIZATION?
Undoubtedly, marketing automation is a brilliant strategy. The disadvantage of blindly automating, however, is the loss of the human dimension. The interaction becomes robotic and generic. As a result, customers become disinterested in what the brand has to offer. The result is a massive drop in customer experience, resulting in poor financial returns. That is why automation and personalization must go hand in hand.
The benefits include a vast improvement in the quality of marketing campaigns and the leads they generate. In addition, more data will become available to boost the customer experience. As a result, the company pulls in more revenue and has happier customers. Marketing automation and personalization can be a very rewarding combination. However, the balance between the two must be perfect for noticeable improvements.
HOW TO FIND THE BALANCE BETWEEN MARKETING AUTOMATION AND PERSONALIZATION?
An important method to use both marketing automation and personalization is customer segmentation. As a forward-thinking company, it's important to realize that not every customer on your list should receive every content. To introduce relevance to your automation, break contacts into smaller lists and groups. Segmentation can be based on location, gender, occupation, purchase history, etc. Verthen, emails and texts can be automated according to the segments to maintain the relevance of the content.
PERSONALIZE THE CONTENT, AUTOMATE THE PROCESS
When crossing the line between automation and personalization, it's important to separate process from content. The process is the communication channel that is used and the available automation software helps with this. However, be sure to maintain some level of personalization when reaching out to the segments. For example, tags for customer names can be added and dynamic content can be used.
TAKE NOTE OF THE INSIGHTS GENERATED FROM AUTOMATION
Most automation software also includes versatile analytical tools that may contain vital information. The insights gleaned from these tools can be used to adjust the balance between automation and personalization efforts.
AUTOMATE IN LINE WITH THE CUSTOMER JOURNEY
A well-built automation workflow should include a start and stop point. Relentlessly sending generic emails is a bad way to personalize, even if customer names are embedded. Instead, let your customer journey lead to automation and personalization. For example, a customer who buys something doesn't need offer emails to buy the same item. They are in a new phase of the customer journey and need to be treated appropriately. Design your automation workflow to send triggered messages when customers take critical steps in their journey. Such emails feel more personal and relevant to customer needs. Consequently, they have a higher open rate and are more likely to lead to final action.
KNOW WHERE THE LINE IS
Finally, if your business is aiming for a balance between automation and personalization, it's important to be aware of the limits. Sending unsolicited emails every day is too automated. On the contrary, if you send an email every six weeks, you will lose potential customers. Likewise, excessive recording of personal information comes across as creepy and annoying. Understanding your industry and its particularities helps to maintain the right balance. For example, B2C companies will require more sentiment-based marketing than B2B.
In conclusion, although marketing automation and personalization must be done together, finding the balance is crucial. The above methods will serve well as rules of thumb to guide your operations.