Personalized Content to Influence Customer Behaviour

Content marketing personalization is the only way to do what marketing is really supposed to do: build relationships at scale”. – Michael Brenner

In the last exposition, we spoke about building customer advocacy. Attaining this level of the relationship with customers implies that first a company must be able to start, build, and sustain a relationship. To build a relationship a company should be able to influence customer behaviour and creating personalized content is one great way to do so. People connect with / associate with a company in different ways and for different reasons. Some could want to become actually buying customers, while others could simply be researching before deciding, while others could have some completely different reasons. The first ‘place’ these people would look into would be the company’s website and or social media pages. They would all reach the same landing / home pages and see exactly the same information and content.

In order to influence customer behaviour, content must be engaging, interesting, and effective. It must urge people to take action and spread it around. Personalized content influences customer behaviour by giving them the information they want, such that they would remain ‘addicted’ to the company and as the affinity grows, it raises the chances of success for the company. Personalized content is more effective, attracts more audiences, and changes the way they interact with a company, which in turn raises the opportunities for conversions. People who connect with a company want to gain as much as they can and what content that appears personalized has the ability to help customers and readers, not just in their business but also in their personal lives. As people begin to see the advantages of the content published by a company, their behaviour, and attitude towards the company changes to becoming more positive. The more personalized content a company can publish, the better equipped it would be to influence customer behaviour.

Personalized content makes marketing and promotional activities appear more precise and customized. It is important to understand your customer base and their current situations. By keeping updated and pace with their changing needs, a company would be able to provide them with content that is most relevant for them. Customers need a lot of information at all times and they access this information from any channel and from any smart device. By keeping all these factors in mind, a company would be able to provide personalized content to suit the interests and preferences of the customers. Personalized content can influence customer behaviour – by providing them with the exact information that they seem to be searching for, or would need in their current situation, a company would come across as a value-added partner, allowing customers to trust and depend on it.

When customers can trust a company, they are more likely to mould their behaviour for the benefit of the company. They begin to buy more and often, encourage others to buy more, and become willing brand ambassadors for the company. Personalized content to influence customer behaviour is possible only when a company understands its customers – when you know what they want, need, and expect – your company can base its content strategy around that knowledge and use it to enhance its relationship with customers. Personalized content allows pertinent and useful messages to get across to customers, based on what they need currently. It is a lot easier as a customer, to trust a company that can give you what you want, when you want, and can do so proactively. It just means that the company is paying close attention to you and makes you want to go back to the company that can do this, thus influencing your behaviour towards the company.

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of understanding and segmenting the company’s customer base before putting any strategies or content in place. It is only by placing customers in segments / groups that a company is able to narrow down the number of expectations and needs, apart from the ease of administering and serving a large customer base. Every company would have varied customers but there would be some common characteristics that would allow a company to put these customers into a single group to monitor their buying behaviour and experiences. Of course, it would be prudent not to make too many segments and gradations since this would be too complicated and difficult to manage well. A company could target its top three buyer segments and then go on to creating personalized content in its endeavour to influence their behaviour in its favour. It would be essential to monitor the changes and record them to understand the impact. Based on the customer response, the content could be tweaked and or improved to ensure that it is personalized enough to influence customer behaviour.

Post creating personalized content for the top three segments, a company can venture to do so for the other segments as well. The more customers it can reach out to, the more benefits a company would gain. A large base of trusting and engaged customers would be a great competitive advantage, since these customers would help to gain more customers and business, while providing repeat business of their own. While creating personalized content, it would be sensible to incorporate the generalized yet effective keywords of the landing pages of the website and the social media pages, into the content. While searching for content with these words, customers and other readers would not only reach the content but also get to see your online presence.

The more personalized and relevant content is, the more traffic a company would attract to its website and other sites. The people that do ‘arrive’ at the sites would tend to stay longer on these sites, which in turn raises the chances of turning these ‘visits’ to actual purchases. Ensure that your content is systematic and reliable. Haphazard and verified content would have the complete opposite effect as that of personalized content. Once people lose trust and interest in a company, it would be impossible to influence customer behaviour or even get them back to the site.

Personalized content becomes more interesting and ‘curious’, when a company can learn the art of linking it with other related and relevant content. By tracking whether readers click on the links, a company would know what content works and which one they would rather leave out. Customers will never stop requiring information but expect that information to come to them and be accessible from wherever they are and however they want. Personalized content will not influence customer behaviour unless it can be accessed easily and through a number of channels and devices. Ensure that your content is mobile / smart device friendly, such that customers can view it on the go and use it as and when they please. The easier a company makes it for customers to gain and access personalized content, the more effective it would be at being able to influence customer behaviour in its favour.

Customers leave huge amounts of data – it is up to a company to pick up this information and use it to advantage. When customers search for some kinds of information repeatedly, it becomes obvious that they need similar /related data and would be happy to receive it in a readable and usable format rather than having to ‘swim’ through the ocean of information to extract what they need. Companies that can provide such personalized content, would be able to gain an advantage, being able to influence customer behaviour in their favour. Every company hopes and wants to give their customers – both existing and prospective, the best. By giving them what is relevant and useful, a company can gain more revenue, profits, enhanced reputation, and be able to influence customer behaviour long-term in their favour.

Learn about a new approach to better customer service!

Interactive Guides for Superior Customer Service

Create interactive decision trees for customer service management, cold call scripts or self-service. Improve sales performance metrics and customer delight across your call centers.

Interactive Decision Tree