In the early days of digital marketing, the brief was pretty simple: create content, put it out there and hope like hell that something sticks.

But in 2024, things are a little different.

We have so much more information about our customers that our efforts must be more strategic. And more personalised. But just because the type of content we are creating has changed, doesn’t mean that it’s more effective.

Optimizely’s Experimentation Benchmark study found that most ideas that companies launch are not having the impact they hoped they would.

This, the Benchmark outlines, is because of three things: data silos, guesswork and the ineffective use of AI.

  • If marketing is operating in a silo, it can’t access the information needed to make real, meaningful personalisation possible.
  • Similarly, if you aren’t using data to make smarter decisions, your strategy will likely be based on assumption and guesswork, which is a highly ineffective approach.
  • Finally, while AI holds incredible potential and certainly can transform marketing as we know it, brands can only unlock this potential if they understand how to use AI properly and if they have people in place with a solid understanding of how to leverage AI to deliver tangible value.

All these realities are a real pity given the fact that 80% of consumers are more likely to purchase from a brand that provides personalised experiences and 63% of consumers will stop buying from brands that use poor personalisation tactics, according to Forbes. As a clear example of how personalisation can boost a business’ bottom line, Forbes also outlines that personalised shopping cart recommendations influenced 92% of shoppers online to buy products.

And the pressure is on to do personalisation properly. Today, personalisation has to go beyond adding someone’s name to an e-mail subject line. Creating truly personalised experiences means making product recommendations based on a customer’s previous purchases and account information, or sending recipe ideas based on what is currently in a customer’s shopping cart. These interactions showcase that a business recognises and values each customer uniquely and, hopefully, leaves a lasting impression. And it is this kind of information that forms of the basis of loyalty programmes, which have been proven to motivate customers to stick with a particular brand.

Personalisation takes to the skies

When Kenya Airways approached Bluegrass to help it update and enhance the user experience and design of its website, we knew that we had to incorporate a more personalised approach into the user journey. Opting to use the Optimizely CMS – and its new platform, called Optimizely One – we were able to create a site that better serves travellers’ needs.

As a simple example, we leveraged Optimizely’s multilingual and multicurrency functionality (with geolocation built into it) to make sure that when customers were searching for flight information on the new website, it was displayed in the correct language and that prices were shown in the correct currency. And based on where customers were travelling, the airline can now display destination-related specials and promotions.

1709791791 496 The right tech to deliver personalised customer | perutrenWhile personalisation is all about the data, it’s important to remember that you are dealing with people who have unique requirements and specific problems that they want to solve. In most cases, understanding where their issues lie means asking for feedback and then using this feedback to improve and alter things that aren’t working as they should. When we were setting up the new Kenya Airways website, we spent a lot of time talking to customers and running through different scenarios so that we could uncover the common challenges they faced when booking a flight. We then used these learnings and insights to improve the UX.

Ultimately, successful personalisation is all about finding a balance between the scientific and the creative – optimising the customer’s experience by delivering the most valuable information to people at the right time. Bluegrass is an Optimizely Solution Partner and we regularly use Optimizely to create and personalise digital experiences for our clients. To find out more, get in touch here.

  • The author, Nick Durrant, is co-founder and MD of Bluegrass Digital
  • Read more articles by Bluegrass Digital on TechCentral
  • This promoted content was paid for by the party concerned