Marketers have been working to achieve a level of personalization for over two decades.  While there has been a strong desire to deliver more relevant experiences to target audiences, only in the past few years has technology caught up to help lower the barriers to achieving personalization.

In this age of digital printing, the opportunity for business to extend their reach to customers has been enhanced through the application of variable data printing (known as VDP), a one-to-one communication tool to deliver the right content to the right person, at the right time, in the right context.

Variable Data Print enables the marketer to tailor brochures, newsletters, direct mail to target audiences providing personalized solutions.  Additionally, VDP can be also be used for billing transactions, welcome kits, fundraising and recruitment.

Consumers want information tailored to their personal buying patterns; and marketers can provide and reinforce their messaging with that information from data collection given up by their customers at the point of purchase. 

Here’s a look at personalization applications using VDP across industries:

Vertical   Market Personalization   Applications
Retail Recommendation engines help keep   shoppers on an e-Commerce website to drive larger   shopping carts and provide conversion rate lift
Hospitality Loyalty programs are being overhauled to include personalized offers and rewards that aim to cultivate a loyal brand following
Financial   Services Credit card companies are launching mobile apps that provide personalized offers based on   transaction history
Utilities Energy suppliers are sending customer   communications that ranks customers’ energy use vs. their neighbors with relevant energy-saving tips
Automotive Car manufacturers now provide tools to let car shoppers build, configure, and get custom, localized quotes in just a few clicks

While personalization benefits a retailer’s bottom line, it also benefits customers by presenting them with products that are highly relevant to their needs.  Airlines, hotels, and resorts often have to compete on price when competing against each other on travel search engines, but personalization benefits customers by matching offers and incentives by their level of loyalty to help foster relationship.

Credit card customers benefit by receiving relevant offers, which also prompts them to use that card more often.  Through personalization, energy customers get more insight into their electric and gas use.  It also enables car buyers to know exactly what their car will look like and cost before ever setting foot in a dealership, which helps decrease the sales cycle for the dealer.

Ultimately, companies are leveraging personalization to drive business results while simultaneously enhancing the customer experience.  As barriers to entry continue to erode, more companies are adopting its use.  As the next generation of applications is being developed, consumer attitudes and preferences need to be taken into account to ensure the practice benefits all parties involved.

For more information on Variable Data Print Campaign Applications, contact jennifer @ ahlithoprint.com or at 708-345-1196.

Source:  InfoTrends 2013 – The Personalization Imperative by Bryan Yeager

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