Social Media, Big Data & Personalization Online

Consumer retention has always been a struggle for brands. Especially in today’s  society that thrives on instant gratification. Consumers do not carry the brand loyalty that they once did. As a response brands and advertisers have increasingly become more reliant on data from a consumer’s digital footprint to make inferences about consumer brand loyalty.  

Social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn have made it possible for brands to better understand their consumers activity. When consumers repeatedly go on social media they leave a trail of breadcrumbs from which the advertiser can make inferences about their product choices. Anything from the pictures that consumers like, how long they hover over a certain icon, to likes or dislikes can give inference to advertisers about consumer preferences. Demographics, geographic location and psychographics are all independent variables that allow a brand to create cohorts of alike customers.  From there the brands can market to these customers on their terms.

With personalized marketing brands can apply a concentration of forces to a specific cohort. In “concentration of forces” brands personalize their marketing message on relevant market segments versus spreading their energies over the broad market.  I am sure you have seen the Amazon Recommendations For You section. This is personalized for each individual user based on their previous history and their browsing tendencies within the ecosystem.

As the cost of this technology continues to go down more companies will start implementing personalized marketing in their digital ecosystem. And father beyond the traditional personalized product mix or promotion that consumers are increasingly demanding.  Personalized marketing is being implemented into branded content as well.  As Chick Foxgrover, Chief Digital Officer of the 4A’s (American Association of Advertising Agencies) mentioned, “People will first connect with the brand representative and then identify with the personalized content, which makes the brand message that much more attention-grabbing.” Companies such as AOL and Yahoo have heeded this warning and are attempting to turn themselves into media companies through serving personalized content to users as a means to increase user engagement.

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