Personalization pays off. According to new research from Harvard Business Review Analytic Services sponsored by Mastercard, authors of the report noted that “personalization has become critical to improving business performance.”
The report, “The Age of Personalization: Crafting a Finer Edge,” found that 25 percent of respondents experienced revenue gains via personalization tactics of between 1 and 9 percent. Thirteen percent had top-line gains of 10 to 25 percent, and 6 percent experienced revenue gains of more than 25 percent.
The researchers said 44 percent of respondents said “their organization’s top line has increased over the past two years specifically due to their company’s ability to create personalized customer experiences.”
Susan Grossman, executive vice president of retail and commerce at Mastercard, said that it’s “no secret that tailoring your approach — to deliver the most relevant product, service, or experience to the right customer segment — is good for you and your customers.”
But for companies looking to refresh their customer engagement strategies, “personalization drives deeper customer relationships, positive brand loyalty and, ultimately, better financial results,” according to the results of the report. “Based on feedback from international, multi-industry executives, 8 in 10 respondents say personalization is important to their organization’s strategy, and more than half say it is an important driver of their revenue and their profits,” Grossman said. “Even more, 81 percent stated personalization will significantly influence financial performance in 2020.”
Grossman said the report identified some opportunities that companies — across several industry segments — can use to “power up their personalization efforts.” This included using the right tools and making sure measurement and benchmarking is top of mind as personalization tactics are deployed. She also said companies can “push personalization beyond marketing” — meaning using personalization across various touchpoints with consumers, such as customer service.
Moreover, Grossman said consumers expect more personalized experiences with brands and companies. She noted that 90 percent “of respondents indicated that customers expect organizations to know their interests and anticipate their needs.” Using the “right tools” is also needed to cull insights into data, which is then used to better enable personalization.
Authors of the report also noted that not every “region of the world is equally advanced in its use of personalization strategies.”
“Overall, survey respondents in North America are more likely to be using personalization techniques than their counterparts in Europe, while organizations in both regions tend to use personalization more than organizations in the Asia-Pacific region,” researchers stated. “Fifty-six percent of North American organizations engage in personalized email marketing, for example, versus 47 percent of European organizations and 42 percent of Asia-Pacific organizations.”