As marketers and MarTech experts, one thing we’re often asked is how do we fulfill the ‘email personalization at scale’ quotient through Adobe Marketo Engage. As investment in this tool is considerable and there is too much hullabaloo going on around personalization and experience-driven marketing strategies, marketers find themselves in a tough spot while implementing and driving personalized email solutions. With email personalization becoming more than imperative for both B2B and B2C enterprises, achieving the same via leading-edge MarTech tools such as Adobe Marketo Engage is a prospect that needs to be discussed.
As a marketing automation platform, Adobe Marketo Engage holds immense potential in boosting conversions, engagement, or lead overall ROIs; most marketers still find it hard to crack the code of scalable personalization when using the tool. Here, we discuss what’s changed in the definition of email personalization in the past decade, what personalized experiences mean in this modern world, and how you can personalize your emails to boost conversion, engagement and retention.
The run-of-the-mill understanding of email personalization
While the term personalization has been on a rampage since over a decade, its meaning has changed tremendously. Earlier, when we talked about personalized email communication, the old-school translation of it was adding the first name of the person to it, changing subject lines to include a person’s or his/her company’s name, repeatable use of personal attributes to give a touch of personalization to the email. While this strategy worked for a while, people started responding differently to such emails, over time and due to excessive usage of tokens, it eventually became redundant.
Even while you’re reading this, your inbox is full of such emails that greet you with your first name and include other such surface-level information, but you care not to open them. So, why would anyone else?
Moving ahead from personalization to individualization: The changed world
If we were to define personalization, it basically is a 1:MANY mass generic messaging approach with a tinge of segmentation based on demographic information. While the understanding of personalization has evolved tremendously for the majority of B2C players with the introduction of live search and AI-driven product recommendations, for B2B, it's still the same old over-usage of tokens. What has changed for B2B customers is their desires and expectations around the experiences they receive. B2B users expect the same experience as the B2C customers, which becomes an unsolvable challenge for marketers aiming to satiate the former with a basic level of personalization.
B2B no longer wants to hold privy to 1:many experiences, rather 1:1 ones. And this expectation, we call it ‘individualization’. The term is very well the successor of personalization and involves dealing with consumers on a personal level, with uniquely curated messaging based on their past behavior, preferences, history, and likes. Individualization is how B2B marketers can initiate out-of-the-box email activities based on a consumers’ interests, wants, identity, and needs.
How to achieve the email personalization quotient with Adobe Marketo Engage
Although Adobe Marketo Engage comes with several email personalization tools and functionalities, we would discuss a few basic ones that you’re already familiar with and those that you might want to explore for your next email campaigns.
A bit hypocritical of me to mention tokens the first thing in my list despite talking about their surface-level personalization standards previously. Well, truth is, tokens are the most easily personalized and the most easily understood tools in Adobe Marketo. If you’re a marketer leveraging the platform, you already know the power of these shortcodes, which is why they land the first on this list. In Adobe Marketo, you can add tokens to emails, landing pages, and smart campaigns. Typically, there are 7 types of tokens in Adobe Marketo - person, company, campaign, system, trigger, program, and member tokens.
For emails, you can add tokens to your subject lines, email script, for referencing data from other fields in the lead database, but never the pre-header (now you can actually, with this hack).