Table of Contents
- What is personalization?
- Personalization of video content
- Effective methods of achieving personalization in videos
Remember when you used to get greeting cards for your birthday or graduation in your email inbox?
Those flashy and animated greetings made you feel special because they mentioned your name and appeared as if the sender had put in the time and effort to create it just for you.
Ever since then, brands have tried to use this personalization approach in their marketing efforts to build better connections with their audiences.
What is personalization?
In marketing, personalization refers to creating content that is customized for each individual.
Personalization is a powerful tool for marketers as brands look for ways to build better connections with their audiences.
Personalization of content mainly helps in two ways:
1. Gaining consumer attention.
2. Building a stronger connection by providing consumers with tailored experiences.
Since people today are constantly subjected to advertisements and marketing gimmicks from every direction, the typical old approach to personalized marketing just won’t cut it.
Consumers no longer feel special just by seeing their name in a company’s newsletter.
It isn’t all bad news, though, because data and technology have made it possible for marketers to build more advanced and unique experiences for their audiences.
A couple of great examples are YouTube and Netflix. Both platforms create user environments that provide content that is highly personalized for their audiences based on data that includes their interests, age group, geography and viewing history.
Technology has also made it possible for marketers to integrate personalization in other marketing assets, such as banner images and even videos.
Through my own work, I’ve seen firsthand that personalization in video especially has seen great success.
Personalization of video content
Imagine receiving a personal video message from Elon Musk in your inbox where he talks to you about the latest Tesla model. Wouldn’t that be a pleasant surprise and make you feel extremely special?
For marketers, this level of personalization of video for mass consumers remains a dream — one that one day they hope technology will help them realize.
With the current state of technology, the level of personalization remains to be inversely proportional to the scale of end consumers.
Therefore, for marketers, the goal is to find the sweet spot that allows them to integrate personalization to an extent that is practical to implement for the scale of their target audience.
Effective methods of achieving personalization in videos
There are a few different methods that you can utilize to add personalization to your videos. These approaches can be practical and extremely effective based on the size of your target audience.
Personalize a video with consumer data (suitable for a large audience).
Video editing techniques that let you customize the on-screen text in a video have become common.
Additionally, there are plenty of online platforms that allow you to feed available consumer data to create personalized videos in real time.
This method is most useful when you’re looking to gain consumers’ attention. Put simply, a consumer is more likely to click the “play” button if they see their name in the thumbnail.
However, this approach can easily turn out to seem gimmicky to many users and, in actuality, does not fully exploit the power of personalization.
Personalize parts of the video with prerecorded clips (suitable for medium-scale audiences).
This approach takes the level of personalization up a notch and feels more personal to the end consumer.
It essentially requires you to separately record and produce bits of the video that are personalized and edited into the rest of the video to provide a personal touch to your viewers.
A great example of this is addressing specific geographical areas at the start of your Facebook or Instagram ads that are targeted to specific regions.
For example, saying “Hi, New York retailers!” or “If you’re a retailer in New York, then this message is for you,” can feel much more personal and, in return, make the rest of the video feel more relevant.
You could also use the same approach to create personalized ads for people with specific interests or who belong to certain industries.
For example, a video production agency, when targeting several industries, can start their ads with variations of: “If you’re a tech startup/real estate agent/retailer/midsize business, we can help you with your video production needs.”
Fully personalize video messages (suitable for small-scale audiences).
Fully personalized videos with personal messages can be extremely effective when you’re reaching out to a small group of people.
Here are a couple of examples where one should consider utilizing personal video messages.
If you’re a B2B business that relies heavily on a few key clients, then instead of sending them email newsletters, you can send personalized video messages on different occasions throughout the year.
Similarly, you can use it to good effect if you’re looking to raise capital for your startup and you have a list of top 10-20 venture capitalists you want to reach out to.
Instead of sending each of them a cold email, create a personalized video message in which you explain why the partnership with that investor will be a fruitful one.
Ultimately, a smart approach to adding personalization to your videos is to segment your target audience based on their scale and their potential impact on the business.
Then, try using the methods described in this article to deliver different levels of personalized communication to the varying audience sizes.
My advice: Get excited, and start experimenting with personalized video marketing.
There are so many creative possibilities, and technological advancement will only push the innovative wave forward.
If you want to talk more about video content, reach out to me on LinkedIn.
Originally published in April 2020 on Forbes.