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Before COVID-19, personalization for digital user experiences focused primarily on categories such as retail, online, and travel related use-cases. Shopping enhanced with personalization, surfacing new ideas and products in relation to a combination of shopping history and similar user buying or interest patterns, was seen as a delighter that went above and beyond in digitally advanced businesses. Today, while digital engagement is an absolute requirement for business survival, many businesses are playing a game of catch-up with major online forces, where personalization is already an embedded features. McKinsey indicates, “The rapid migration to digital technologies driven by the pandemic will continue into the recovery,” and we are projecting companies with a lagging position will shift 35-45% of IT spending to realize new digital channels and touchless capabilities.
This is where personalization comes into frame, and can unlock novel potential lines of customer engagement. Can personalization be done with analytics, segmentation, attribution, and push notifications? Yes, but historically that’s been one segment, one campaign, and one handcrafted persona at a time. Machine learning platforms, such as Amazon Personalize, now provide a scalable and automated method to deliver personalization without the heavy lift associated with traditional data science initiatives.
So how can Amazon Personalize create a more meaningful engagement pattern for brands to help customers get more of what they need to thrive into the future?
Here are some areas where Amazon Personalize can apply:
Enhanced Routine Shopping
Millions of users are spending hours a week performing repetitive task work on Amazon Fresh, Instacart, or other grocery chain websites to update the fridge and pantry. Let’s face it, this isn’t exactly an inspiring activity for most of us, and we sometimes get stuck in a food rut. Let’s look at what personalization can do here:
Context Aware Engagement
We are all hit daily with outbound email, digital adserv, and retargeting content that robotically consumes our time. Once in a while we will engage out of curiosity or actual need. It’s a numbers game. But think instead of the potential for campaigns to run highly personalized content, with context aware notifications targeting a specific audience at the right time and place.
Enhanced Virtual Healthcare
During COVID, patients avoided hospital/institutional care, including those requiring medically administered products. New prescriptions for chronic medications decreased, including hypertension, diabetes, and depression, as patients faced significant unemployment and financial burdens when seeking care. While to hospitals and private practices initially faced revenue cliffs from lack of patient engagement, telemedicine use skyrocketed during the pandemic, indicating greater acceptance and trust for remote provider engagement.* (The high interest in this topic led our healthcare and AI leaders to dive into this topic in an informative webinar early in the pandemic.)
We see incredible opportunities for personalization to drive deeper engagement with patients into the future. Personalized digital experiences, coaching, and post-visit engagement have the power to reshape the patient experience throughout their healthcare journey and adoption of digital health tools has never been higher.
The gap between customer loyalty and loyalty-based rewards is staggering. Most of us default to major brands for routine shopping by default, but what do those brands do to retain customers? As we’ve seen in quick service retail, there is abundant opportunity for brands to establish and personalize rewards to keep customers engaged. In an economic downturn, or even when a brand is simply looking to establish their digital presence, personalized loyalty programs offer unique ways to build and nurture long-lasting relationships with consumers. And there are reasons why engagement counts now more than ever.
Amazon Personalize, Why Now?
Businesses more than ever are seeking deeper context for their customers, and customers are seeking contextually aware offers that suit their specific needs, time, and place. For most companies, user context, buying patterns, preferences, and interests is spread across dozens of data sources. Conceptually, this data unlocks an incredible opportunity to better understand the user context and provide a base platform for driving deeper engagement with the user.
Amazon Personalize provides brands the ability to inject personalization into digital experiences relatively quickly. The starting point is an existing customer dataset and a mindset of quickly iterating on personalization concepts. This allows teams to identify the most fungible use-cases for this technology without gold-plating the initial concepts.
We also note the limited supply of data scientists in the market, and recognize the prospect for the Amazon Personalize platform to short-cut the skills gap with a ready to use Machine Learning platform that automates a number of data science related tasks. Amazon Personalize is a gateway for brands to quickly innovate, experiment, and drive deeper connections with their customers.
Here’s a recent example of our work with Personalize. Thinking about integrating personalization into your program? Let's talk.
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