Personalized and Relevant Content Drive Effectiveness for Marketers

by Jackie Davis

More than ever customers are craving connection with their favorite brands. To capitalize on this need for connection, retailers must personalize content to create an engaging, targeted, and human-centric experience in these uncertain times. Recently, during Sitecore World Tour: Digital, Vijayanta Gupta, Global Vice President of Strategy and Industries at Sitecore explored customer success stories that showcased how retailers can evolve and layer content to meet the needs of customers.

“Brands must create great experiences to connect with customers,” he said. These experiences are built around four things: personalized content, relevant content, measured effectiveness, and driving outcomes.

Watch the Sitecore World Tour

Personalized Content
“Great experiences are delivered with great content,” explained Gupta. The Microsoft Partner Network was facing challenges personalizing content and experiences for the 300,000 partners that were visiting the website. Scaling personalization for such a large group would take hundreds of hours of the IT team’s time – time they didn’t have.

This content is important – for every dollar in direct sales, partners bring in $8.70 for Microsoft. These partners need to be updated on new products and offerings through the partner network website but delivering content in 19 languages is no easy task.

To deliver an engaging, personalized experience, the Microsoft Partner team turned to Sitecore’s platform that would enable them to personalize content without burdening the IT team. Flexible templates and built-in reporting enabled the Microsoft team to provide a personalized experience with easy access to the information users need most.

“By utilizing ML, they were able to do this without overloading their team” and deliver a great experience to partners, shared Gupta.

Relevant Content
“Content helps create connections,” Gupta said. And these connections help drive engagement. If organizations don’t have a frictionless system, they will struggle to deliver a great experience. For General Mills, delivering a consistent customer experience across the multiple brands was a pain-point. Using the Sitecore Content Hub™, the team began a journey of reducing, reusing, and repurposing content that would engage buyers across multiple channels without breaking the bank.

This system gave General Mills the “agility to generate the right content for the right campaign and by utilizing one single technology capability they were able to deliver across brand and across channels,” he shared. The Sitecore Content Hub™ saved General Mills $1.8 million.

Driving Outcomes
Many brands struggle to turn engagement into sales. Lowe’s Canada was no different. Tanbir Grover, Vice President for eCommerce with Lowe’s Canada, took the stage at the recent Sitecore Symposium to share his company’s journey. Lowe’s had acquired one of the largest home improvement retailers in Canada and “as part of that acquisition the need to modernize our IT infrastructure, bring stability to our website, and also allow for scaling to happen,” was needed.

Lowe’s knew that potential customers were visiting the website for DIY inspiration, researching projects and products, but not always converting into a sale. “The digital channel is so important. The digital channel is where the research starts and then they are going to the store,” said Grover.

To improve the digital customer experience, Lowe’s Canada personalized web content to pair products and projects, showing customers exactly what they need to complete their task. By “connecting the online and offline store experience” sales increased by 11 percent. There was a 40 percent increase in mobile revenue and a 20 percent increase in average order value, explained Gupta.

Measure Effectiveness
It’s important for brands to analyze the impact of campaigns by looking at ROI. Subway, the world’s largest restaurant chain, wanted to provide a great digital experience to drive customers into stores. To do this, the restaurant digitized the loyalty program and added online ordering with the option of in-store pickup.

Paired with personalized content back by the Sitecore® Experience Platform™, Subway experienced a 71 percent increase in loyalty usage, an 8 percent increase in orders that leveraged personalized content, and a 40 percent increase in mobile sales. Digital orders doubled and the average order value increased by 3 percent.

For brands to successfully engage customers, personalized content that is showcased on a variety of channels is a necessity. Now, more than ever, people are craving a human-centric experience. It’s about “creating human connections in a digital world,” concluded Gupta.