Today’s marketers know that quality content is essential to marketing success. Content needs to educate, excite, and inspire prospects, customers, and partners alike. Unfortunately, today’s buyers are bombarded with multiple marketing messages. When your prospect’s inbox explodes with offers daily, how do you ensure your content stands out?
One of the keys to making sure your content stands out is to make it relevant to each and every recipient, or your message will reach many but entice few, if any. This is not about changing the content itself; it is about customizing the messages promoting your assets with dynamic content. If these promotional messages are not relevant, your potential reader may never dive into your thought leadership. To promote content relevant to recipients, you need to know something about each of them; only then can you target effectively. Once you know something about your targets’ preferences and interests, demographics, and location, for example, it’s much easier to ensure you are delivering the right content. For more information on how to promote content using personalized messaging, take a look at our ebook From Creation to Conversion: Promoting Content to the Right Audience.
Options for Segmenting Dynamic Content
You can present dynamic content based on a variety of information, including:
- Demographics: Characteristics about the individual, including name, company name, job title, phone, and email address.
- Firmographics: Characteristics about an organization, including location, annual revenues, number of employees, and industry.
- Past behavior: Responses to emails or actions taken on your website can help inform a person’s interests and/or place in the buying cycle.
- Products or services already purchased: Using information about past purchases can help you up-sell or cross-sell relevant products or services.
- Psychographics and preferences: This takes into consideration a prospect’s interests, attitudes, and opinions.
- Behavior of related contacts: Understanding the actions, interests, and preferences of others in the recipient’s company is critical in a purchase that involves many stakeholders.
Marketers often use only two types of systems to create dynamic content, and neither is great. First, you have the more in-depth and technical type of dynamic content. This is typically found in enterprise email or marketing automation systems. The alternative is a simpler, easier-to-populate type of dynamic email content. But here, marketers are often limited by a small set of segments and restrictive email templates. For example, with this simpler version, you often can’t segment beyond demographics, and if the segments of your recipients change prior to email launch, your hands are tied. This is why many companies decide to forgo promotions featuring dynamic content, even though such promotions often yield the best results.
Common barriers to successfully using dynamic content:
- Tough to set up – Can require SQL-like statements
- Version control – Low confidence in the accuracy of the different versions, or potentially the inability to check the different variations before sending
- Effectiveness concerns – Challenging to determine which messaging is driving lead conversions
- Content explosion – Because segmentation logic and content are coupled, dynamic content is only reusable in a limited set of scenarios and content cannot be used across campaigns
How to take full advantage of dynamic content
Dynamic content is not hard with a little planning and the right solution. When selecting an email marketing or marketing automation solution, use the following checklist to make sure you are getting the system you need:
- The solution includes reporting that shows which messages are resonating and which aren’t, allowing you to optimize campaigns quickly
- The solution allows you to use multiple segments in a campaign, ensuring the message is as precise as needed to drive results
- You can preview each version of the content before launch, ensuring no mistakes are made
- Dynamic content can be used in both emails and landing pages for maximum targeting and optimal results
- The solution allows you segmentation separate from design, providing the ability to control who can define segments, so users creating the content can only select from approved segments
- You can use and reuse segments for multiple campaigns, significantly reducing the amount of work that goes into defining target segments
- The solution can update segments as new leads are added to the database or as leads are updated—saving your company time from re-segmenting each time you send an email, and making sure that no one is left out of the campaign
- The solution makes it possible to generate relevant content for unknown leads based on targeted messages that are being driven through channels such as PPC, social media, or online advertising
Want to learn more about dynamic content and promoting your content? Download our ebook From Creation to Conversion: Promoting Content to the Right Audience.