Dynamic content allows you to shift the customer experience based on your customer’s needs. By personalizing content across multiple platforms, you can build interactions with your brand that your customers will remember.
In order to do so, however, you first have to know what exactly dynamic content is. So, before we dive into how you can use dynamic content to build customer relationships, let’s cover the basics.
The Basics of Dynamic Content
One of the most powerful methods that marketers use to connect with their customers today is personalization, in which content is adjusted to be more relevant to each user depending on what the marketer knows about their personal context. Dynamic content is a technique used to deliver personalized display text, images, and other user interface elements: these elements change based on a each individual user’s predetermined targeting value.
Dynamic content is deployed over several different touchpoints that work together to create a single, seamless interaction for users. This interaction is created through a combination of the user’s search queries and the web server, which generates customized HTML content as the user navigates through the site.
Using Data to Understand Your Customer
When we talk about delivering dynamic content that is responsive to a user’s “personal context,” we’re talking about customer data. Data can tell you a lot about your customers. Most brands will say that they collect and use customer data to inform their marketing, but it’s not just whether or not you use it—it’s how.
The most powerful uses of data are when you can combine multiple datapoints to create a layered experience for the customer, rather than looking at only one area at a time. To illustrate the difference: dynamic content is not as simple as pulling data for every user in one particular region and sending them the same geotargeted email. Rather, its most effective applications are those that use multiple types of data (such as data collected from different touchpoints) in conjunction with one another for content decisioning.
Instead of sending out a blanket email to every customer in an area, you might use that same geotargeting data in combination with users’ search behavior to determine who should receive a more tailored message that speaks to that precise segment. This approach will require you to do a more sophisticated analysis of what is meaningful to your audience, but it will allow you to deliver a more personalized interaction to prospects and customers.
By layering the experience based on the histories of each individual user, you will be able to serve a highly tailored—and thus more relevant—content selection that is more likely to stimulate engagement and conversions.
And customers expect it: after all, 75 percent of consumers report that they prefer retailers to use their personal information if it allows them to improve their shopping experience, and 64 percent believe it is important that companies present them with relevant offers.
Delivering Personalized Content to Each Customer
The primary benefit of dynamic content is that you are able to connect with customers on a deeply personalized and individualized level. Proper execution of this technique means knowing where and when you should deliver personalized content—and that means knowing your customers.
Information such as customer shopping patterns or location can help you target your message to address user needs. Once you are in tune with where your users are, dynamic content will allow you to connect with them much more directly.
Consider the following use cases:
- Knowing that certain customers are more likely to make a purchase online, you can target them with customized push notifications on their mobile devices or advertisements on their social news feeds.
- For customers with a history of in-store purchases only, consider sending personalized emails offering a special in-store discount. Use geolocation to include information about the store closest to them, and use browsing behavior to remind them of items they were interested that are currently in stock at that location.
- If a customer frequently searches for women’s clothing, you might use that information to influence the header image that you serve when they arrive on your homepage to highlight your new arrivals in women’s clothing.
Customized interactions such as these not only increase the likelihood that the content will capture the user’s attention in the moment, but they also cultivate an impression of your brand as relevant and tuned-in to their needs—increasing trust and brand affinity over time, and transforming new customers into loyal ones.
Keeping Dynamic Content Consistent Across Channels
Consistency is one of the most important components of dynamic content. From the images on a landing page to the emails you send, the interaction should flow seamlessly. Each touchpoint should be so consistent in style and messaging that the user views the journey as a single engagement with your brand, even as they move between devices and across channels.
Content consistency does not mean blasting the same content on multiple platforms; it means finding a flow between them that creates an attractive and personalized experience. That means that your offerings should be channel-specific (e.g. tailored for shorter read-times and reduced screen size for mobile users), but unified in brand voice.
If a customer frequently searches your site for a specific product category, you might serve recommendations in their Facebook feed or email that reflect that affinity while adjusting the presentation for each channel: thus, their experience remains consistent while still being optimized.
Taking What You’ve Learned Into the Future
There is no single way to apply dynamic content to your brand strategy, only best practices. The best foundation is a solid understanding of your customers’ histories: familiarize yourself with your audience and use all the data you have to continue to build a strong relationship with them. This will enable you to offer an integrated experience that will not only impress them, but will also turn them into loyal customers.