The modern struggle for marketers is not a new one: Market to as many people as possible, or market to a fewer amount of the right people? Fortunately, the evolution of technology has brought a new option into the mix — targeted marketing to reach larger numbers of the right people.
In today’s post, we’ll touch on the most important topics, i.e., the benefits of targeted marketing and the best practices for targeted marketing.
Why You Need to Target Your Marketing
As the title of this article suggests, a generic message that tries to be all things to all customers isn’t going to be as effective as segmenting your audience and developing variations on your brand message to speak to customers on a more personal level. This isn’t merely a sound theory; the statistics support this position loud and clear. More than 85% of consumers say that personalization (i.e., what you’re targeting offers the customer) plays an important role in purchase decisions, and another 62% have not only chosen a brand that provides personalization, but they’ll pay more for it and recommend it to others. The ROI for personalized marketing is, in general, more than 200%, but it’s important to remember that you need to look at an integrated marketing strategy . Just looking at email marketing, list segmentation leads to 14% higher open rates with 10% higher unique open rates, 65% higher click rates, and 9% lower unsubscribe rates.
It should be no surprise then that nearly 95% of marketers say cross-channel personalization is imperative to meeting current objectives, and another 75% of marketers are emphasizing a move to personalization technology over the next year. Database list segmentation is listed as the third most valuable marketing automation feature at 39%. At the same time, only 16% of marketers are capable of capturing customer intent in real-time in order to respond with behavior-based marketing. The question for you is whether you’re going to remain satisfied with your current statistics or follow in the footsteps of top-performers and beat your competition to reaching customers with truly personalized offerings.
Understand The Consumer Journey
Micro-moments have fragmented the path to purchase. Customers exposed to your marketing can be at any stage of the journey, from those that are about to make a purchase to those that are just looking for a little information. This is why we’ve emphasized the fact that you need to engage consumers at every stage of the buying cycle. It’s also why we’ve recommended targeting before: saturation marketing and mass marketing implies delivering the same message to all consumers, increasing the risk of failure. Ultimately, it helps you craft the right call to action for the right person, at the right time. By crafting an integrated, synchronized, message for a marketing campaign, you develop a way to personalize the message at each touchpoint to draw consumers to your brand.
“Personalization” might seem like the buzz word right now, but segmentation strategies coupled with hyper-personalization tactics across channels are going to be the most effective to activate shoppers. That is, of course, the other important take away for targeted marketing: You need to know what channels your customers are using and which stage of the journey they’re likely to be in at that channel, and you need to be accessing more than just print. Consumers expect a seamless experience of your brand across channels and across devices. About 53% of consumers find it important that brands (especially retailers) recognize them as the same person across channels, and 48% will purchase more from a brand that leverages their interests to personalize that experience across channels.
Create Relevant Advertising
The goal through all of this is to be relevant to your customers. Roughly 40% of consumers say most promotions don’t deliver anything of interest and almost as many say 37% end up deleting most emails from marketers without reading them. Obviously, this is about more than just appealing to them at the wrong stage of the path to purchase. Even if you already segment your audiences, say by demographics, you need to realize that your customers aren’t a single, homogeneous group. You need to understand the customers themselves, to understand their generational concerns and motivations to create the right message for them and to put it in the right format.
For instance, the use of mobile devices is about equal across the major purchasing generations — Millennials, Gen X, Boomers — from 50% to 55% but Millennials are 20% more likely to use their smartphone to make purchases. Millennials are also 35% more likely than Boomers to use their smartphone daily. So if you aren’t reaching Millennials on mobile, you’re going to miss out on a good piece of revenue, whereas using that mobile ad spend on Boomers is going to be a waste. Similarly, African-Americans are more likely than Caucasians to make mobile purchases (21% vs 13%), not to mention 39% more likely to purchase products advertised to them on mobile, so the positioning and tone of your marketing outreach is going to make a huge difference as well.
Now that you understand the benefits of targeted marketing and how necessary it is, you can evaluate your current strategies to see where you can apply some of the best practices for targeted marketing. You’ll begin to see your marketing has a more positive effect when you not only improve your reach, but improve it in the right places.