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#IABDigitalSummit2017: The art of knowing me - moving towards personalisation

The scene is being set for an era where personalisation is back in customer service.
#IABDigitalSummit2017: The art of knowing me - moving towards personalisation

More than any other time in history, companies have an unprecedented amount of data on their customers. At the same time, the consumer is demanding personal attention. This was one of the main messages to come out of the IAB Digital Summit 2017, which took place at The Galleria in Sandton. The summit drew together a diverse number of subjects by expert presenters.

Keynote speaker Didier Uljasz, MD of Accenture Interactive as well as digital marketing lead for the MEA region told delegates that shifting from the what to the why is the new approach to customer brand relationships.

The customer genome

“To understand the motivation behind a consumer’s choice, companies need to uncover their customers’ needs, wants, beliefs and preferences.” The customer genome is the ability to qualify these, which can include money, travel, friends, family, work, and more. By correlating a person’s interests with the more interesting attributes of the products, a brand can manage these to meet the needs of the customer.

By making the right selection and giving a customer the right offer, a brand can personalise its campaigns for customers, he adds. “For brands, the customer genome’s real value will be realised through intelligent service design, resulting in a customer experience and relationship that is more personalised than ever.”

Didier Uljasz of Accenture Interactive in action.
Didier Uljasz of Accenture Interactive in action.

Continuing with this theme, the day’s second keynote speaker, Alexandra Salomon, director international of the IAB in Washington D.C., shared the four principles of great digital experiences via a television spot that was created in the 1960s. “The Pepsi Helicopter advertisement perfectly illustrates the four principles of advertising. These principles have not and do not change as the world changes,” she says.

The first principle listed is that consumers are more than a set of data points. By focusing on emotion, the Pepsi Helicopter was successful. Secondly, platforms are always changing and we must change with them. It is vital to understand the consumers’ attraction to these evolving and new platforms. The third principle is that when platforms change creativity must change with them. Last but not least is that technology expertise is crucial for meeting new audience heightened expectations.

Putting consumer experience first

This 50-year-old television spot demonstrates how the digital era got the story backwards and now the industry is paying the price, says Salomon. “Instead of technology being an enabler, we put it first and so it has become intrusive. This has taken the toll on the consumers’ experience. Our goal must be to get our consumer delight back through great advertising that is sustainable and puts consumers first.”
This, she adds, means making technology invisible to focus on marketing creativity that propels the consumer to say ‘ah...’ “When did you last say ‘ah’ to your company’s ad? It is a human desire to feel connected to each other, and this has never changed.”

Another hot topic was that content needs to be engaging and personalised. Leonel Silva, director of media partnerships for the EMEA region at Celtra says the shift of consumers to mobile, while providing brands with a tremendous opportunity, has alienated consumers. “Mobile advertising is not great when it comes to creativity. It has not hit the mark yet, and therefore does not stir desire. The content needs to be engaging and personalised.”

Trend specialist/optimist/author/entrepreneur/speaker/business innovation strategist John Sanei also listed five key trends that are driving us. These are hyper personalisation, hyper trust, hyper convenience, hyper value and hyper transparency. He believes that in less than 18 months we will see the next massive disruption, which will change flat screens and mobile phones. “We started with cinema, where the screen was far away, then it moved closer with television and flat screens, and then even closer with mobile devices and phones. Soon it will be even closer, in our glasses…”

Click here for more from Silva and here for more from Sanei.

About Danette Breitenbach

Danette Breitenbach is a marketing & media editor at Bizcommunity.com. Previously she freelanced in the marketing and media sector, including for Bizcommunity. She was editor and publisher of AdVantage, the publication that served the marketing, media and advertising industry in southern Africa. She has worked extensively in print media, mainly B2B. She has a Masters in Financial Journalism from Wits.

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