Lessons in Personalised Content with Kanye
by Rob McLaughlin
Posted on 08-09-2018
The world’s most creative people are perfectionist. From the web designer who spends hours designing the typeface for a new website to the musician who records the same song 100 times to nail their guitar tone, creatives do everything in their power to give their audience the best possible experience.
That’s why it was a surprise to hear music purists call foul when Kanye West began changing the lyrics of some songs on his latest album two weeks after releasing it. They claimed he should stand by his completed work once it leaves the studio, but Kanye was doing what popular musicians have always done – giving people what they want.
We don’t buy complete albums anymore, we stream songs, which is why an artist’s income largely comes from downloads instead of album sales. Kanye is just the first major musician to take advantage of a digital format to deliver the best listening experience to his fans (while also serving his own interests).
As marketers and advertisers, we can take many lessons from this approach. Content is now king, and the way people experience that content dictates its reach and impact Both pieces are essential if brands want to meet customer expectations in today’s multi-channel environment. The next frontier of personalisation is about finding ways to be more responsive and give customers what they want even quicker.
Most brands already draw on customer data to personalise their offering, but analytics technology has evolved again and brands are turning to Artificial Intelligence (AI) to personalise their offering even further. This begins with a central platform. Unless data is centralised, easy to manipulate, and accessible to the right systems, brands will be working with a partial view of customers and even their most advanced tools will have a limited impact.
SKY UK, Europe’s leading entertainment company, is using AI to enhance its customer understanding and deliver more personalised experiences to its 22 million subscribers in five countries. . Adobe Sensei is helping the broadcaster to continuously refine its targeting and content strategies, which means subscribers receive a more relevant service tailored specifically to their activity.
Artificial Intelligence is also gaining traction with brands that want to optimise their online experiences at scale. Swisscom has been using AI to tailor its web and mobile offering for each of its 6.6 million customers in real-time. A/B testing has been around for ages but AI enhances the process, allowing Swisscom to automatically analyse millions of data points and apply its learnings instantly to keep fine-tuning its digital properties.
That’s not to say we should hand creativity over to data and automated systems. Emotion still lies at the core of effective content. Where AI helps is by helping brands ensure their creative approach and roll out strategy aligns with customer needs in the right way, at the right time. Even the biggest marketing team can’t analyse millions of customer reactions, much less instantly, but this is the level of audience insight they need to be successful. That’s what AI algorithms deliver.
Let’s also remember that it takes months to curate a creative idea and turn it into a campaign. If the idea then falls flat, all this hard work will have gone to waste. It’s time we take inspiration from Kanye and capitalise on new technologies that improve the changes of a campaign hitting the mark.
The process of optimising content is simple, but the approach we’ve taken so far is no longer fast enough for a digital audience. Most marketers still need to wait until a new brief lands to apply their learnings from a campaign that is still running, which means they are missing out on valuable opportunities to optimise and improve their approach right away. With AI, they don’t have to. After all, why wait until tomorrow to give the people what they want when you can deliver today?
For more on how Adobe Sensei helps brands optimise their content and deliver better digital experiences, click here.
Read the SKY UK case study here
Topics: Digital Transformation, adobe Sensei, AI, Kanye West, personalisation, Sky UK, UK, UK Exclusive, Digital EMEA