Improving performance of social media campaigns with personalization

    Blog
    Know-how
  • Improving performance of social media campaigns with personalization

Find out how to hyper-personalize your landing page, “save” ad targeting data to create a personalized retargeting experience.

It’s impossible to have a business without a social media presence these days. Most likely, you are getting some social media referral traffic and have invested in running social advertising campaigns. But how many of those visitors actually convert? If you’re struggling to prove the worth of your social media marketing efforts or would like to boost your conversion rate, it may be time to consider website personalization.

Let me start with a brief introduction; Website personalization is the art of making your website content relevant for a specific audience. When used correctly, personalization can reduce your acquisition costs, increase your conversions, and improve the overall experience of your customers and visitors. Let’s look at some use cases for personalization to improve social media marketing performance.

A dedicated landing page is so 2017…

Ad platforms provide us with a lot of data about potential customers. Facebook, for example, allows you to target people in an incredibly granular manner. You can target by age, gender, location, and interests. Typically, you’d use this data to create relevant ads. Most likely, you’ll even set up a dedicated landing page for symmetric messaging, but that’s it — not with personalization. With personalization, you take the data provided by the social media platform and use it to create a hyper-targeted website experience (including later web sessions). But how, you wonder? Here are a few examples including some real-life use cases.

Personalization by location

Let me tell you a little anecdote about a B2C website that allows visitors to book in-home beauty appointments. Their ad campaigns on Pinterest and Facebook were major traffic drivers. However, the ads weren’t converting. After analyzing user recordings, the marketing team realized that visitors coming from ads struggled to find out whether the service was available at their location.

So to help visitors find the right information, they set up the most basic location-based personalization you can imagine; on their landing page they changed their generic headline “Feel like a star with our on-demand hair and makeup services” to “On-demand hair and makeup services delivered to your home in {{city}}.”

The placeholder {{city}} was dynamically replaced with a value passed on through the ad’s URL. A simple trick that dramatically increased conversions.

location Before — a generic headline. After — a headline reassuring visitors about the service’s availability at their location.

If you want to learn how to pass information onto your page using URL parameters, check out this video. It’s a step-by-step guide explaining everything from “how to add URL parameters to your ads” to “how to modify your landing page” (note: the personalizations are created with Unless).

Personalization by gender

You run different ads for men/women? I bet you connected those to gender-specific landing pages. But what about the rest of the user journey? What about later web sessions? Based on the ad a visitor clicks on, you should “memorize” their gender and personalize beyond the initial touch point. For this you can either set a cookie or use a personalization service like Unless to create so-called “audiences”. The idea is to show different product suggestions, testimonials, and reviews for each audience. After all, a visitor who sees relevant products is much more likely to convert.

Personalization by interest

Interest-based personalization can help you tailor your website to people with different interests or tastes. Again, the emphasis lies on website (not just landing page).

If you’re running Facebook ads, you’ve probably heard of interest targeting. Couple that with personalization and you’ll be able to create highly targeted experiences for each interest group. You sell concert tickets? Create different versions of your website tailored to audiences’ taste in music. You sell women’s shoes? Show a coupon for sport shoes to runners and inform party-goers about your discount on high-heels.

Time for another customer example: Peecho, a print on demand service uses personalization to show different messaging and products based on interest. When targeting photographers, they make small changes to visuals and website copy , creating a relevant experience throughout the user journey. This optimization beyond the landing page has significantly increased “time-on-site” and conversions.

peecho In just a few seconds Peecho changed their homepage to make it more appealing to the audience “Photographers”.

Personalization by job title, industry, and company size

Most of the examples we’ve discussed are targeted at B2C companies, so you’re probably wondering if we can come up with some good B2B examples. So how about we go full B2B and talk about something “exciting” — LinkedIn.

Nearly 80% of B2B marketers view LinkedIn as an effective source for generating B2B leads but if you’ve ever tried their ad platform, you know that it’s a hard nut to crack. LinkedIn advertising, especially if you’re very specific about your targeting, is freakin’ expensive so you better make the most of it.

A good idea is to personalize based on a visitor’s job title. This way you can highlight different product features or services based on what this person finds most valuable about your offer.

Guillaume Cabane is the poster child for this type of personalization. He has optimized growth at Drift and Segment.com by tying the product pitch to the visitor’s background. After all, what a marketer values about a platform like Drift can be entirely different from what a sales person looks for.

Often, personalizing based on company size or industry is also a good way to create relevance.

startup enterprise At Unless, we change our product pitch based on company size.

Personalization and Retargeting

The examples above are handy if your goal is to drive new visitors to your website. But what about retargeting your existing database? Personalization can also be a powerful tool for re-engaging with leads.

If you’re running retargeting campaigns on Facebook, you can create a custom audience from a file upload, a Mailchimp list, website traffic, or app activity (provided that you have Facebook’s tracking pixel installed or have integrated their SDK). Before launching your retargeting campaign, try to segment your leads into audiences. Use any information available in your CRM or ESP (email service)— what PDFs has the person downloaded? Are they in trial? Are they a free-plan customer? And so on.

To give you an example, social media ads can be a great channel to inform existing customers about new features, to increase retention rate, and to upsell users to higher plans.

unless personalization Example of a personalized Unless homepage: For returning customers, we change the headline to “Have you seen our new features?”. Users who are currently in trial see the message “Why upgrade?”. Both are brought back to the website using Facebook retargeting.

Getting started with personalization

I hope these examples have inspired you to do some personalization of your own! You can be a self-starter by dropping a cookie and changing your website’s behavior accordingly. Of course, that requires some coding skills but it can work well for small projects or a one-off experiment. Just remember that each cookie increases page load and impacts speed, so if you want to use personalization on a bigger scale, it’s best to do it through a specialized tool(not to mention that it makes the whole setup process much easier). Check out this comparison website to find a solution that fits your needs.

Also, be sure to contact me if you have questions about website personalization or want to tell me more about your use case.