In just a few years, marketing and client communications have undergone a big shift in focus. Marketers used to concentrate on blanket awareness campaigns – pasting the same message across as many public channels as possible. Nowadays, customers are after a much more personal buying experience.
Studies report that more than half of millennial and GenX consumers are willing to share data with companies in exchange for a personalised relationship. Yet, a third of organisations still consider tailored communications to be of low or no priority! Given that customers do actually want some sort of personalisation these days, your business would be at an immediate advantage if you developed a targeted communications plan.
Customer Relationships Management (CRM) Systems
In order to establish a personalised communications plan, you need to fully understand the needs of your customers and in order to do that, you need to do some research.
There are several programmes that can help you keep on top of all your clients’ details, such as Zoho, Salesforce, HubSpot, and Insightly. These CRM systems will note down information on every interaction you have with one of your customers and you can input details regarding their occupation and such like. You can then use this information as variable data to make each of your customers’ buying experience a unique one.
If you don’t want to splash out on a CRM system just yet, you can create your own spreadsheet and input any relevant data manually. As your business grows and you think about investing in a CRM system, most major offerings will let you import this data straight from Excel – so you won’t need to spend ages replicating the information later on, either.
Benefits of Personalisation on Engagement and ROI
It’s not just customers that benefit from a bespoke service. According to research by Adestra, 82% of marketers believe that personalisation leads to an increase in open rates, and 75% believe that it leads to higher click-through rates. It’s not hard to see why; people are more likely to be interested in something relevant to them than some generic offer. Adestra also found that 71% of companies using an advanced personalisation method report having ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ ROI, compared to only 35% of companies not using tailored methods.
Plus, 9 out of 10 customers have admitted that personalisation is an influential factor when they shop. 77% of online shoppers say that they’re more likely to buy from a retailer again when emails are personalised.
With statistics like those, how can you not personalise your own communications plan?
3 Ways to Use Personalisation for Your Print Business
How you tailor your communications really depends on who your customers are and how you normally interact with them. To help you get started, we’ve come up with three ways you could think about targeting your audience better…
- Industry – You could segment your customer base according to their field of work and subsequently customise your message to be relevant to their needs. For instance, clients from restaurants, cafés, and bars will probably have very different applications for print than your estate agent clients. Clients in the food and drinks industry might respond well to direct mailers that advertise display items, like A-frames and table talkers, while clients working for estate agents are more likely to be interested in direct mailers about presentation folders.
- Buying Habits – Targeting clients according to industry still generalises a rather broad spectrum of clients. To give a personalised service at an individual level, you’ll need some way of tracking each of your clients’ purchase history. This can give you incredible detail about what your clients like to buy and when. Tag a little section onto the end of your emails recommending a selection of relevant products. Use information such as products they’ve bought previously, their typical run length, the specifications they tend to go for and make these recommendations as relevant as possible. You can also track if there are any spending patterns over time and target clients in the run-up to their busy periods.
- Stage in Customer Lifetime – New customers won’t have a bulk of data for you to analyse yet but there are still ways that you can make them feel special. Set up a communication plan focussed on nurturing new client leads. This could involve a series of informational emails detailing the various products and services you can offer, or it could involve a celebratory discount after their 10th order, for example. However you choose to do it, you need to let them know that you aren’t treating them like every other client.
We recommend that you conduct a thorough analysis of your own clients’ buying behaviours but to help you on your way, we’d also like to point you in the direction of our eBook, Print Customers & How to Find Them. We asked 1,200 print customers about their buying habits and set out the results in this handy guide so that you can start targeting your customers according to industry trends.