Personalization has become one of those buzzwords you can't escape. Yet, while brands often regard this term as an integral 'tactic' that's now instrumental in elevating the customer experience, they frequently lose sight of its core meaning. Many marketers become fixated on the process, not the person, therefore missing the opportunity to genuinely engage and interact with their target audience.During his presentation at CRM Evolution, Robert Bergman, professor of marketing at Lewis University, explained that, when developing great customer relationships, marketers should look no further than the crucial elements of successful personal relationships--what works in life will ultimately work in business. Brands must focus on person-to-person marketing, for this dynamic will serve as the backbone for loyalty and engagement in the future.
Longevity requires the willingness and dedication to build, enhance, and maintain these relationships, no matter the circumstance. However, as Bergman said, most humans are terrible at perpetuating their own relationships, causing many companies to falter, as well. Brands often try to coerce consumers into such relationships by providing something of value. But, as Bergman notes, you simply cannot buy love.
Here, Bergman outlines his 15 elements for great relationships:
People crave relationships that better their lives, meaning marketers must put trust and honesty ahead of all other aspects if they wish to achieve long-term loyalty. Trust and honesty dwell at the core of any great relationship, personal or professional, and these characteristics represent the foundation that strengthens these long-term bonds. (You wouldn't withstand personal relationships that lack these critical elements, would you?) In the end, marketers must not become consumed by revenue goals and success metrics, for these numerical measures can't assess the emotional impact of the brand's customer experience efforts. Focusing on the individual, instead, will help companies achieve success on every level.