A recent McKinsey & Co. report found that over 70 percent of customers today expect personalized outreach from the companies they buy from. In fact, more than three out of four points to personalization as the factor most likely to turn them into a repeat customer that’s willing to recommend the product to friends and/or peers. This sends a clear message to companies; there’s no room for error when it comes to interacting with customers, whether the organizations are corporate giants or small-and-medium businesses all doing their best to survive.

Consumers are less patient and far less forgiving than ever before. They no longer simply expect companies to cater to their every whim; they insist upon it and their loyalties are perpetually up for grabs because they’ll change their spending habits in a heartbeat if they sense that another brand understands them better and anticipates their needs more accurately and consistently.

Leveraging AI Technology to Create a ‘Segment of One’

Consumers today feel let down when it comes to delivering a genuinely personalized experience because they’re not getting tailored messages and recommendations based on their needs and wants. As a result, sellers are looking to modern artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to provide the tools they need to master personalization and move beyond an older generation of marketing techniques that force customers into broad arbitrary categories.

AI platforms, and machine learning in particular, are helping companies gain a thorough understanding of their customer’s behaviors, preferences, and goals. When armed with a vastly-improved understanding of these customers as individuals, companies can better leverage what they know to drive engagement. More importantly, they can apply AI to deliver the right message at just the right time.

The value of personalization is clearest in its impact on profitability: companies that rely on AI to deliver “just the right experience” to “just the right customer” at ”just the right moment” consistently enjoy revenues that are 40 percent higher than those that don’t. As a result, getting personalization right is no longer optional. Unlike traditional market segmentation that forces unique individuals into broad-based categories on the basis of shared characteristics like age, gender, income, education, vocation, location, favored recreational activities, and spending habits, The concept of a Segment of One is about identifying what makes each and every customer tick. That knowledge is then used to engage with the customer at every stage of their shopping experience.

Using a dynamic blend of AI, big data, and analytics – all boosted by automation – customers receive messages that are highly specific and highly contextualized. Promotions and offers are tied to specific aspects of the individual’s profile and real-time behavior that allows sellers to engage with the customer in a way that enhances their subjective experience of the brand and cultivates brand loyalty.

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