Do you know the two most effective marketing words (and it they aren’t FREE or YOU)?

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personalization
personalization
Personalization makes sense, especially when you realize the value of the two most important marketing words.

Jon Goldman takes us across the ocean for a great example of personalized marketing — demonstrating how a Swedish television licensing service brought its paying “customers” into the picture with embeds of their image into a slick (but standardized) video. (He also answers the headline question.)

It’s beautiful. He writes:

They created a video about an unnamed hero. Suspense builds as people across the world wait to see the picture of this new hero who has changed society as we know it. Everyone is watching and waiting.

Now here’s the catch- they pull out a picture of YOU.

People start cheering, and jumping for joy. Some are crying. Your picture is plastered on billboards, floating in outer space, waved proudly in rallies, and even replaces an old lady’s family pictures.
You’re the new Swedish hero.

Then, Radiotjänst thanks their paying subscribers. The end.

Here’s why it worked and why this campaign can change your marketing:
Because it’s all about YOU.

The campaign went wild because people uploaded their or their friend’s picture onto the video to become the new Swedish hero. And right next to “upload your picture” is a “pay your licensing fee” link. Brilliant.

It was personal and super entertaining. It didn’t matter that it was from a Swedish licensing company (yawn), Radiotjänst. The video was about you, so it was shared, and shared a lot. In just 8 weeks the campaign got over 14 million hits!*

Nice. Now I doubt most architectural, engineering and construction contractors would have the technological capacity to replicate the Swedish project, but we can still get personal in our marketing, if only by introducing clients’ names and some salient elements about them into our materials.

More impressively, less technological, and probably even more effective, we can certainly write handwritten (or in my case, neatly but personalized typewritten notes — my handwriting is unreadable) notes and thank you cards; and, yes, send them in the mail or where appropriate by courier. However, you can succeed even with a simple personal and genuine email expressing gratitude, providing the client with some useful information directly relevant to him or her, or sharing a story you know that client will value.

Mass personalization schemes will do better than mass broadcast schemes; in my opinion, individual personalized communications will do far better than anything else. Since we generally are selling relatively high ticket products/services in relatively small volumes, the human “I care” message doesn’t need to strain us time-wise or technologically. We simply need to connect individually.

Are you?

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