You probably know why you have a digital platform (a website, an app or whichever platform you deliver your services or products on). But guess what: your users also have a reason for using your website. What makes the users enter your website, is that you provide, what they are seeking. If you don’t provide it, they will probably find it somewhere else.
It makes good sense to design your products around a business model. After all if your only purpose was to satisfy customers, you might as well give anybody what they want for free. Instead we find ways to design solutions that help business grow by satisfying their user’s or customer’s needs.
If I own a coffee shop franchise, I’d like to use my website to support engagement for my mocca thirsty customers. I would love to make the loyal visitors. I would encourage them to be ambassadors on social media.
That would be my goal.
But that’s probably not the job at hand for a visitor on my website. Maybe they just want to find an address or opening hours. Maybe they want to see my amazing coffee menu. Or maybe they just googled “how to avoid a bitter cup of joe”.
There’s a relevancy gap. What the user want is not my end goal for the user.
So what should I do? If I only provided an address and prices, it wouldn’t support my digital strategy. And if I went to the extreme of what the user wants, I should probably just offer them free coffee.
But one thing is for sure: we are dependent on our customers, and we cannot change the task they have at hand. If they want to find an address, we can’t convince them, that they don’t need the address. Of course we should provide them what they come for, as long as it doesn’t interfere with our strategy. So maybe we should start by giving them what they want in a way that supports our strategy: “Find your local coffee pusher and see the daily special on their Facebook page”.
With optimization tools such as A/B-testing and engagement analytics, such as provided in Sitecore, you are able to explore what kinds of communication helps you drive your digital strategy the best. The goal is to close the gap. To make sure that your digital strategy and the user’s needs are aligned.
But, as you might have noticed this is a simplified example. You probably have a lot of different users with a lot of different “jobs to be done”. This makes things harder. And maybe you need to bring out heavier tools.
If you have worked with optimization, you know that small changes can make a big difference. But you can only come so far with optimization, since – all things considered – users are inherently different. They might be from different target groups, have different tasks, different history with your brand or they might need different things from your digital services at different times.
This is where personalization comes to play. By segmenting your users by what ever parameter is relevant, you are able to control your marketing to these segments giving you the opportunity to enhance the relevancy for the individual user.
The reason for using personalization is not that the tools are available or easy to use. It’s that they have the ability to make your website matter for the specific user.