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Making ‘Personalisation’ Work Harder For Brands

Marketers from adidas, Visa, Jaquar & Mahou discuss how personalisation can be successfully applied for better connecting with consumers

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Made to order is the flavour of the season. From clothes to wallpapers to bathroom fittings and even beer, personalisation is what consumers look for. A touch of personalisation changes the whole game between buyers and sellers out there in the market, and personalisation at scale can lead to incremental business outcomes.  

“At the Boston Marathon, we used drone cameras to track each of the 30 runners and sent them personalised videos of various stages of their run,” said Manish Sapra, Senior Marketing Director, adidas, citing an example on how the shoe brand adds personalisation to their products. 

“While not all runners were customers, they get associated with the brand. We take experiences beyond the brand. The tricky part here is to drive the customer back to the product which is what we work very hard for through all activations,” Sapra added. 

Customisation is different at different places and time. According to Sandeep Shukla, Head - Marketing, India & Global Operations at Jaquar Group shared the example of one of the company’s app where architects can log on and design their own chandeliers. “They can learn about new products and ask for things they need. This way we subtly push our products in a way that we get sold but we sell what is custom made for the buyer. Customisation however is markets dependent. For example, Middle East likes gold so we have gold finish for bathroom faucets and this is just specific to that market. We customise as per needs, trends and tastes,” he said. 

Shining light on the finance sector, Sujatha V Kumar, Head - Marketing of India and South Asia at Visa said, “While personalisation was always, a key element in finance sector today is that the game has moved to another level. Now consumers want it to be personalised to the extent they won’t even have to take out their card and yet the transaction would take place. This is rather convenient, but the question of data privacy also comes in. We at Visa don't store any personal data. These are stored with our banking partners.”

For some players customisation is not easy and often has to take a detour to fit in. The liquor category falls among these. “In a country like India there are many rules and regulations around alcoholic beverage, we have to do our customisations very carefully and intelligently,” said Ramita Chaudhuri, chief marketer at  Mahou India. 

She explained, “Craft beer is becoming popular in the country, where it is customised around the customer’s taste profile that around we do events around our beer like we do Tapas nights where we customise menus with beer just like we do at many restaurants, pubs and fine dining eateries.” 

Most current examples of personalisation come at the cost of privacy. However, the larger awareness around the subject is making personalisation among a marketer’s top agenda. The four marketers were discussing this in conversation with Nandini Dias, CEO, Lodestar UM, at the Delhi leg of the Marketing Whitebook Summit 2019 on August 22, 2019. 


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