Unveiling new research at the Technology for Marketing (TFM) show, the Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing (IDM) reveals the use of personalisation and the data habits of digital marketers. ‘The State of Digital Personalisation in 2016’, sponsored by Adestra, highlights that over three quarters (76.5%) of marketers are personalising emails using personal data that is collected via an opt-in method. However, nearly a quarter of marketers (23.5%) are using data that is collected via automatic methods, such as IP address tracking, where clear consent can be hard to obtain. Unless marketers are clear on the customer consent they have for that data – for example: location, browsing history or family make-up – they will be in breach of the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) when they come into force in May 2018.
According to the research, marketers believe the benefits of using personalisation in email are widespread and have a direct impact on results. Not only do 83% of marketers report a rise in open rates, but 75% also said they saw more click-throughs on emails that included personalisation. The report also found that over 50% of marketers believe personalisation, results in a boost to both sales and customer satisfaction.
It’s difficult for marketers to focus on their most valuable or important data, as they are inundated with metrics and analytics. Henry Hyder-Smith, CEO of Adestra, explains: “Gathering all this data and not using it is a waste, if not a breach of the rules. Marketers are potentially sitting on a goldmine of data to use for better personalisation, relevancy and engagement. The key for email marketers is to focus on collecting data they can use, rather than gathering more data just because their systems allow it.”
Personalisation is not only highly effective, but it’s expected by today’s consumers. Jane Cave, MD at the IDM, comments: “The digital world we all now live and work in has potential customer touchpoints everywhere, whether online, on your mobile or in-person. Each one of these touchpoints can create a piece of data that marketers can use to better understand their customer. However, unless businesses fully understand how to use this insight and the rules that govern it, they could not only upset the consumer but also be breaking the law.”