Bring people, content and technology together to excel at personalization

Content delivered at the right moment makes visitors feel known and understood. And that makes them more likely to engage with your brand. This is the idea behind intent-based personalization.

Imagine you are on a blind date and the first thing you hear is “will you marry me?” You shake your head and laugh, sit down at the dinner table and your date repeats “will you marry me?”

This kind of awkward interaction is what we, as consumers, face in most of our interactions with brands. We visit a site for the first time and before we even get to know the brand we see “Buy now,” “Sign up for emails” or “Get a call from sales.” The messaging doesn’t align with the customer’s intent in the moment, making it feel impersonal. With an intent-based personalization strategy, teams can quickly start aligning content with user intent to create more engaging experiences.

What is an intent-based personalization strategy?

A lot of strategists focus on identifying and mapping content to personas but neglect to prioritize what a person wants in the very moment they are on the site. The result is content that looks personalized, but feels out of sync with the user.

Intent-based personalization flips the script to focus on what your visitors are looking for and how they’re progressing through your content. A developer could be interested in documentation, ROI studies or career opportunities. A parent could be buying clothes for their kids, for themselves or as a gift. By understanding their intent — the purpose for which a user is on your site — you can serve them the right content at the right time.

Ready to give intent-based personalization a try? Download your step-by-step guide to intent-based personalization.

Bring people, content and technology together to excel at personalization

Marketing teams excelling at personalization today exhibit a number of common qualities: 

  • Agile, cross-functional teams that work in parallel rather than outsourcing technical capabilities;

  • A focus on aligning content to visitor intents; and 

  • Best-in-class tools to organize and deliver personalized content rather than all-inclusive suites.

Make personalization a team sport

Every team has its part to play. When planning a personalization strategy, make sure that your cross-functional teams cover at least the three skill sets below. Keep workflows parallel and communication open to avoid silos and bottlenecks. If you’re missing core skill areas, prioritize your hiring to fill these gaps.

MarketingDevelopersContent Creators
Identify and enable intents Add signals Test and iterateConnect and integrate tools Link CMS, personalization, delivery, and more for end-to-end flows Build content model and enable structured contentMatch intents to relevant content Tag content Identify and map personas to intents

Organize and structure content for easy reuse

Organizing your content is critical to success. Content helps tell your brand’s story, and encourages visitors to spend more time on your site, ultimately leading to better transactional engagement. When it comes to personalization, your vistor’s intent is as important as their persona. Without organized content, segmenting intents and personas — and delivering the right content to each — becomes an uphill battle mired in redundant workflows.

If your current CMS doesn’t support structured content, or if your content is scattered across systems and channels, consider switching to a more flexible, unified platform that can serve content from multiple sources on the same page. This will make the job of personalization significantly easier and more scalable. 

Build the right stack for your business

The key technology components needed for personalization are the same whether you choose a suite or a stack approach. The difference is in who chooses those components. Suite architecture is messy and locks you into certain decisions (for example, an experience management suite). Instead, think about what a personalization tech stack should look like and identify whether or not you have the respective parts to build a well-functioning, flexible system that’ll ease many of the burdens of personalization.

Caption: These are the key components needed for personalization whether you choose a suite or stack approach.

Caption: These are the key components needed for personalization whether you choose a suite or stack approach.

Bringing it all together

Assembling a technology stack, structuring content and activating people on your team might sound daunting. That’s where Contentful and Uniform have you covered. We’ve designed a personalization strategy workbook with everything you need to start engaging customers with intent-based personalization today. 

This step-by-step guide walks you through planning your personalization strategy and shows you how to assemble a personalization stack in a few easy steps. It’s a great hands-on tool that you can use to introduce intent-based personalization to your team and launch your first campaign.

Download your personalization strategy workbook, now.

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