Top 3 personalisation pitfalls to overcome to elevate customer experience

Success in the era of personalisation requires planning and placing the needs of the customer experience at the core of business strategies.

The pandemic has driven businesses to focus on improving the customer journey by leveraging digital experience platforms. With this shift towards online platforms, personalisation has become a factor in delivering experiences that speak to the customers themselves. Modern companies are now realising that marketing tactics that interrupt the customer experience do not help the brand. Instead, they need to understand and uncover what the people are interested in to be able to deliver their message effectively.

Personalisation plays a key role in this process. Rather than delivering impersonal, one-size-fits-all experiences, it enables businesses to tailor experiences for highly specific audiences. According to KPMG’s Customer Experience Excellence (CEE) 2020 Survey, it is the top driver for brand loyalty among Singaporean consumers. Brands identified as customer experience leaders such as American Express, Singapore Airlines and Apple Store ranked high in the personalisation category.

However, implementing such initiatives is not easy. As technology advances, the complexity of personalisation also increases. On top of that, innovation leaders have set the bar high for the rest of the market, which makes such initiatives a daunting task for some enterprises.

With this environment, organisations can approach personalisation by understanding some of the pitfalls associated with the process. By addressing the challenges that marketing and IT teams face, businesses can deliver a better customer experience.

1. Dealing with Disparate Data

Every successful personalisation effort revolves around data and context. Having an abundance of quality data is essential for personalising experiences and connecting with customers on a deeper level.

However, due to both the rise of new data privacy regulations as well as the growing complexity of the customer journey, collecting data is becoming increasingly difficult. According to Gartner,  the personal data of 65 percent of the world’s population will be covered by modern privacy regulations by the year 2023. The impact of these regulations is that data will be spread across different databases and systems. Integrating disparate data sources to create a clear and holistic view of the customer for detailed personalisation will be challenging.

To get the most out of their data and better understand customers, organisations should prioritise the seamless integration and sharing of data within a set of standards across diverse systems. As a first step, an audit should be initiated to analyse what data is collected and where they are stored. They can then implement a data governance strategy to ensure that the information gathered is accurate, uniform and consistent and properly stored.

2. Disjointed Technology Stacks

Technology powers successful personalisation efforts, but getting all solutions to work in unison is not easy. With uncoordinated technology and systems, setting frictionless omnichannel interactions with highly tailored content, seamlessly delivered to the right person at the right moment can be a challenge.

When designing the organisation’s technology stack, it is important for IT teams to identify which systems are fundamental for delivering personalised experiences and consider how these can be integrated easily into the process.

While having the right tools in place is a significant first step, it is also critical to ensure that the systems work together. In many scenarios, having various solutions providers and being tied up with vendors is unavoidable. With awareness, however, IT teams can design dynamic systems that are flexible and can keep up with evolving business needs.

3. Scalability Barriers

With the immense pressure to meet today’s customer demands, a business can find it difficult to look at the horizon with a clear vision. Many businesses have invested in technologies to grow the business, but they can be a huge barrier to effective personalisation, both from a marketing and IT perspective.

As companies shift their focus on digital marketing, the technology requirements are also increasing. For example, a website with low traffic can suddenly receive a hundred thousand visitors, turning one target demographic into a worldwide business. Without a scalable technology and process to match the growing business need, the results will suffer—and in fact, this is one of the big reasons why so few organisations get personalisation right.

To address this problem, companies should be planning for the long term and leveraging solutions that provide freedom and flexibility for the users. Costs can pile up between the purchase, maintenance and integration of these solutions, which is why having “too much” technology can be a challenge. Thus, every technology introduced into the system should be customisable and have the capabilities to support future business needs.

Success in the era of personalisation requires planning and placing the needs of the customer at the core of business strategies. By consolidating data and creating a technology stack that provides all the necessary tools for delivering better customer experiences, organisations are empowered to execute their personalisation efforts with ease.