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Keys To Mass Personalization

A single platform can help your business create unique experiences for all customers.

Analytics, big data, mobile, and social are coming together to create unique interactive experiences for consumers through new forms of highly targeted, tailored, and instant content. We discuss how you can take your content to the next level and make your small business stand out with your customers and potential customers.

Your small business may have gotten into the bad habit of building walls between you and your customers with the potentially toxic mindset of only providing a service or a product for a transactional relationship. We all know this can happen because of internal and external pressures such as low employee resources, tight budgets, or lack of marketing spend. But what if you could pull your business into a new type of relationship with your customers that could not only generate a transaction but create a personalized or memorable experience for little spend?

Building a truly customized experience

Making an effort to create an above-and-beyond or tailored shopping experience proves to your customers and prospects that you value their loyalty. What they feel during their shopping experience is the key to success for any small business especially given that you don't have the resources bigger companies have. In a survey done by Adweek, 32 percent of marketers said they don't have access to the tools they need for customer analytics or customer outreach. Low-cost tools such as Intercom or Urban Airship let you provide customized and automated customer outreach programs providing that extra mile of service without having to reach out to every customer individually.

Personalization and experience-based marketing towards existing and potential customers has become widespread in this Internet age, with services such as retargeting ads and social media targeted marketing through the Twitter ad program and Facebook ads. You can easily use a service such as AdRoll to help you target viewers of your website to ads across the web. Retargeting services are a great way to bring back customers who visited your site or abandoned shopping cart items. It has been shown that only one in four people actually complete an online purchase. To combat this, some retailers customize the online ads to the color or the exact item the website visitor was viewing for a constant visual reminder of what they might have missed out on.

Think beyond your product or service

Many businesses get so wrapped up in delivering product that they forget how to deliver an unforgettable experience for their customers. Some of the ways to deliver top-notch service with relatively little expense include offering upgrades for loyal customers, specials for users on mobile devices, or even complimentary, faster shipping. Always remember to take the same care offline, too, with event-based customer experiences. Providing exclusive event access or a VIP customer day for those loyal customers can not only spur good word of mouth regarding how you treat loyal customers, but it can also drive people to want to become a part of this special experience by becoming customers. A great example is The Corner Bakery, which offers a select few customers and local media influencers a sneak peek into their business, and encourages people to share their experience through social media.

Where there is a will there is always a way, as there are many creative and low-cost methods online and offline for creating experiences for your customers. Bottom line: When it comes to personalization, remember to listen to your customers, learn from other businesses, and create memorable experiences for those customers who have supported your business. Never forget your customers, and they won't forget about you.