4 Barriers to Content Marketing Personalization


Brands today are part of an ever-changing marketing landscape, where consumer trends seem to change daily. At the same time, there’s continuous pressure to grow sustainable revenue. While it may seem like there’s no connection, the opposite is true. Savvy brands reap the multiple rewards of keeping up with market demand, building brand loyalty, and improving the bottom line—and they do it with personalization.

For marketers, to be effective at people-based marketing requires accounting for these human behaviors in real time. These days, the speed of information moves so quickly that the best-intentioned campaign can feel irrelevant in no time. According to Boston Consulting Group, 57% of companies take 3 to 6 weeks to create a campaign and up to 4 weeks to measure the results. This is why it’s more important than ever to deliver the most relevant content at the right time and through the right channel.

Personalization, and better yet on 1-to-1 level or what we call individualization, is the cornerstone to a truly engaging content experience that drives customer action. When done right, this can help build customer loyalty and drive ROI.

More and more brands are focused on individualization in 2018. According to Forrester, 94% of marketers are focusing on their data and analytics capabilities, personalization technologies and customer profile data management capabilities to deliver personalized customer experiences. Despite the fact that a growing number of brands are focused on content personalization these days, many brands face a variety of challenges to execute personalization effectively. Here are four of those challenges along with solutions to overcome them.

1. Lack of Resources

Differentiating your brand through compelling content, executing the content, and building out a full-fledged content marketing strategy requires manpower and budget to make it happen. Without the budget, technology, or talent to create, approve, and distribute content in a timely fashion, brands struggle to deliver minimum levels of personalization.

Finding the right talent and the right technology can help brands execute content personalization more effectively through artificial intelligence based automation and machine learning. Reference our guide How to Master Individualization to Delight Your Customers for more strategies to optimize your resources to achieve individualization.

2. Technical Barriers

Another significant barrier to progress with personalization includes technical issues such as poor data centralization, legacy technology measurement, and attribution challenges. According to the Forbes Insights & PwC Content Survey, more than 20% of brands cite a fragmented tech infrastructure—and at least 14% of brands indicate that inadequate tech tools pose challenges in creating relevant content.

Finding a trusted advisor who can help your organization evaluate its tech stack and provide strategic recommendations about how best to integrate systems can help solve these issues.

3. Inefficient Content Operations

Another common setback is the inability to test and learn rapidly in a field where the ability to remain nimble is essential. In addition to the 57% of companies that take 3 to 6 weeks to create a campaign and up to 4 weeks to measure the results, another 22% take several months to ready content for delivery.

Savvy organizations collapse siloes and create cross-functional teams dedicated to personalization. Their leaders have learned to test and learn through aligning marketing with sales, IT, and other functions to create personalization experiments that deliver analytics quickly and efficiently. This enables them to create, deliver, and measure campaigns in days, monitored in real time.

4. Challenges with Tracking, Reporting and Data Quality

You can’t effectively personalize if you don’t know your customers. Even the best-funded campaigns fail if they don’t reach the right people at the right time. Therefore, data quality is king.

Many companies struggle to effectively measure and attribute the impact of campaigns. These barriers limit the ability for marketers to learn from customer behavior and adapt accordingly, which is at the core of individualizing the brand experience.

Many brands need help with combining all data sources, integrating third-party data, creating a real-time view of customer behavior in context, and understanding which experiences should live on which channel. Strategic marketers are moving towards using  AI and machine learning to automate decisions and individualize content at scale.

Today’s brands are focused on personalization as a long-term strategy and not just a gimmicky tactic—it’s clear that personalized marketing is here to stay. How successful is your organization with personalization and individualization? Learn more about OneSpot solutions for delivering individualized content experiences across channels.


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