From persona to person: Next-level personalization with Salesforce Marketing Cloud

How SFMC answers the call for effective, next-gen personalization

Are you finding that the personalization techniques that used to work to gain market attention just don’t anymore?

You’re not alone.

Marketing teams are learning that personas, first party data, segment groups, and a simple Marketing Cloud implementation can no longer provide the same competitive edge or impressive sales lifts they used to.

“We’re in the age of the customer, singular,” says Michael Hepworth, Salesforce Marketing Cloud practice lead at Ciberspring, “the fourth industrial revolution. Everything is centered around specific people, not groups of people.”

While still foundational, marketing teams that push past the basics of a personalized experience are better positioned to achieve the loyalty and attention of customers, and the profits that go along with that.

Let’s walk through how to level up your personalization with the leading marketing automation platform, Salesforce Marketing Cloud.

Under the hood of marketing personalization

It’s become the Personalization mantra: Send the right message to the right person at the right time on the right channel. This is a foundational marketing principle that needs a reboot in order to produce results today.

The right message to the right person

Until recently, segmenting marketing messages based on personas has gotten the job done. Now the question has to be “What do we know about that person specifically?”

Marketing has gone from persona to person. Collecting demographic data (such as age, job title, education level) used to be enough to provide a good customer experience.

Now psychographic data (what motivates the person behind the demographics, who that person is) is the key to marketing maturity. Says Hepworth, “All of that information can be gathered and leveraged through Marketing Cloud to personalize a message and an experience specifically for not that persona, but that actual person.”

Purchase history, where they go on Internet, ads they click on Facebook… Marketing Cloud can capture all of that valuable data. It matches first party data against millions of other records to build detailed, individual profiles of customers. Their history, including inferences of their personalities, propensities, and preferences, can be gleaned from the data that Marketing Cloud collects and accesses, which will help drive the right message to right person.

The right channel at the right time

At the start of most marketing campaigns, the message is sent out on a few different channels. From there Marketing Cloud tracks where each person is responding. Did they respond to the Facebook ad or did they reply to the text or did they go to the website? How did they come in? How are they responding? When and where did they buy? Then it prefers that channel so that, based upon their history, Marketing Cloud sends future messages through that channel.

“Marketing Cloud learns when their propensity to buy is at its peak and delivers the message at that time on the channel they prefer,” says Hepworth.

Marketing Cloud can track when a life event occurs, too and send timely messaging around it. For example: Say a healthcare marketing team wants to nurture women toward coming in for a mammogram.

Using demographic data from Marketing Cloud and psychographic data from Audience Studio, the marketing team will be able to target women over 40 with a family history of breast cancer who haven’t come in for a screening in over a year.

To target the message to the individual, data from Audience Studio tells the team which individuals have been looking at specific sites about cancer, or who’s concerned about specific aspects of their health. Those people can be sent a special message that addresses specific concerns and encourages coming in for an exam.

With that high degree of targeting, the right people are sent the right message at the right time, leading to saved money and effort, and a high response rate.

All of this adds up to customers receiving highly targeted marketing messages at the exact micro-moment of their need.

Marketing Cloud products for personalization success

Marketing Cloud on its own is a great start for building a next-generation marketing model. Right out of the box, you can leverage first party data like age, gender, and job title.

To access more sophisticated information like propensities and interests, the Audience Studio product should be added to the tech stack. This combination will provide deeper insights into customers and set the stage for marketing to individual people.

“When you’re talking about Marketing Cloud, Audience Studio is the engine that allows you to segment your current first party data, your current audience, by psychographic data, as well,” explains Hepworth. Adding Audience Studio answers questions of your customers like, “Who am I? What are the things I’m interested in? What sites do I visit?”

To get the entire experience, the true next-generation of marketing, Interactive Studio is the product to add. “That’s not even just marketing anymore,” says Hepworth. “That’s your entire experience. When you come onto a website, it knows who you are and it caters the content to you. Interactive Studio is above and beyond. It’s really the next-generation of marketing.”

Next-level marketing with Marketing Cloud

Stepping into the next generation of personalization requires a shift in how marketing teams think about their customers and how data is captured and used. SFMC is integral to executing mature, highly targeted marketing campaigns that deliver loyal customers and generate profit.

Ready to experience the next-level of personalization and targeting with Audience Studio or Interactive Studio?  Ciberspring can help you go beyond basic data points with expert Salesforce implementation, training, and support. We specialize in finding smart, elegant solutions to any digital challenge. Give us a call to start the conversation.



Let’s Talk

Ready for a complete digital marketing transformation?