Hyper-Personalization in Retail: Why the Hype Is Right

Hyper-personalization is changing retail. But how?

Picture this: You log into your favorite online grocery store, and it instantly knows what you need. It suggests recipes based on your diet and usual purchases, highlights sales on your favorite products and even recommends new items you’ll love. At checkout, your preferred delivery times and payment methods are already set. This, my friend, is hyper-personalization in action in the retail sector.

Hyper-personalization goes beyond traditional personalization by using advanced data (and sometimes even artificial intelligence) to tailor every aspect of the shopping experience to individual preferences and behaviors. For marketers, this means tapping into detailed customer data to create highly relevant and engaging campaigns, which boosts loyalty and sales.

Let’s explore how hyper-personalization is changing retail, the tech behind it and how you can implement it effectively.

Hyper-Personalization: A Bird’s-Eye View

In the past, personalized marketing has been used as a way to target certain demographics using basic customer data (at the most). In real time, hyper-personalization takes things a step further by adding a human touch.

Here are the key takeaways for hyper-personalization:

  • It’s an advanced way to create highly targeted content.
  • Each customer gets their own unique experience.
  • Using customer data (such as what you might find in your CRM), marketing teams are able to deliver personalized content that resonates.
  • This is true for any type of content, from Personalized Video to GIFs, email preview text or product recommendations.
  • Hyper-personalization fits into marketing for any industry, and retail is just one of them.

Simply put, personalized retail experiences that meet highly specific customer preferences (and attract highly competitive customer attention) is more effective.

“A strong data strategy will distinguish industry leaders from followers.”
– Snowflake’s 2024 report on retail data

We couldn’t agree more.

How Retailers Enhance the Customer Experience with Personalization

For retailers, personalized experiences go a long way in solidifying customer loyalty. At the top of the marketing funnel, personalization is minimal because customer data is shallow.

For retailers, personalized experiences go a long way in solidifying customer loyalty.

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But as the customer journey goes on, retailers gain access to information like purchase history, online and in-store visits, omnichannel touchpoints, shopping cart interests and much more. All of this fuels a hyper-personalization strategy that delivers tailored experiences.

For example, retailers can create a personalized shopping experience by delivering:

  • Individualized coupons generated from past purchases
  • Recommendation engines that are as powerful as they are personal
  • Customer-centric releases that enable product personalization
  • Multimedia email (including unique GIFs, Personalized Video and more) campaigns delivering 1:1 personalization for the recipient alone
  • Sale pricing and rewards experiences geared towards niche customer segments
  • Segmented, data-driven social media campaigns

Retailers shouldn’t feel limited. This list is just a starting point of the endless possibilities of retail hyper-personalization (stay tuned for real-world examples below).

Is AI a Must in Hyper-Personalization?

So do you have to use AI to leverage hyper-personalization? The short answer is no. AI isn’t required for hyper-personalization in retail or other industries — but there’s a big caveat to that statement.

Considering how hyper-personalization rests on an in-depth data strategy and a company’s ability to get deeply relevant content out to individual customers, it only makes sense that automating the data-gathering process and using AI to speed content creation is majorly helpful. Modern retail businesses would be remiss not to consider omnichannel marketing improvements using technology that can help companies do more, do it better and do it faster.

For example, our Enterprise AI Video creator trained on your brand can help you develop the video content you need on the fly. Prompts can be hyper-personalized, and the video can be integrated with your customer data so you can generate millions of AI videos, one for each individual.

Examples of Hyper-Personalization in Ecommerce and More

Hyper-personalization is easier to understand when you see it firsthand. Here are some examples of what pros in the retail industry (and some other brands) have conjured up.

1. A Personalized Year in Review

Automotive retailer AutoNation provided individualized, deeply Personalized Video to existing customers with data points about their own customer journeys. This gives customers a peek behind the curtains into the data the customer has about them, such as what car they bought, what car they sold (and whether it’s already been sold to someone else), service history and more.

While there’s no overt upselling going on in this video, there is a reminder for car owners to schedule their next service appointment. And the customer retention that comes from personalized touchpoints like this leads to long-term ROI.

2. Fixing Up Hyper-Personal Style

“So much of what ecommerce has been is search and scroll, and it’s inconvenient,” said Stitch Fix CEO Elizabeth Spaulding in an interview.

On the contrary, Spaulding’s company Stitch Fix prioritizes personalization in the retail space by making the app browsable based on the user’s personal style that has already infiltrated the feed.

Stitch Fix says they use generative AI to better understand customer feedback rooted in text — which is historically hard to sift through, but large language models are really good at organizing it — and uplevel their outfit modeling capabilities.

3. Personalized Loyalty in the Customer’s Language

Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed has millions of players around the world, but every brand could do with a little more loyalty. That’s exactly what Assassin’s Creed did for its 15th anniversary with this personalized gaming video.

Note in this grid of personalized examples how the videos address individual usernames in their native tongue. Additionally, they shared player history, including hours played, number of games played in the series and even more nuanced content like number of skills achieved in the game. There’s even a chance to pre-order an upcoming game at the video’s end, showing how loyalty and upselling are often two sides of the same coin.

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4. Bridging Ecommerce and Offline Marketing

Retail personalization isn’t always easy given the sheer mass of campaigns brands must compete with. Eyeglasses retailer Warby Parker manages to cut through the noise by offering home try-on for up to five pairs of glasses at a time, enabling customers to find frames that suit their face in person.

While many eyeglass companies, including Warby Parker themselves, have upped the ante with high-quality virtual try-on, nothing beats real-world wear. Moreover, they’ve managed to maximize customer engagement by bridging ecommerce and offline marketing strategies (not to mention provide opportunity for user-generated video content with shopping haul and try-on videos).

Hyper-Personalization for Retailers of All Sizes

In today’s competitive market, the level of personalization can be a game-changer for retailers of all sizes

By leveraging data and technology, they can offer tailored experiences both online and offline. For instance, brick-and-mortar retailers can use purchase history and customer preferences to provide personalized recommendations in-store, creating a unique shopping experience that fosters loyalty and repeat business.

Hyper-personalization also enables smaller retailers to achieve differentiation in a crowded market. By offering unique, customized experiences, they can stand out from larger competitors. This can be particularly effective in niche markets where personalized service is highly valued.

As Deloitte says in its latest retail trends rundown, “Retailers will increasingly blend digital and physical formats to appeal to consumers who prioritize quality, value, choice and convenience differently.”

This can put retailers who prioritize personalization ahead even of businesses with larger marketing budgets, given their strong in-person shopping experiences.

Meanwhile, integrating digital tools with offline experiences can create a seamless shopping journey. Retailers small and large can use apps and loyalty programs to gather data and offer personalized deals and recommendations. This enhances personalization and encourages customers to engage more often. For example, a small bookstore might use a mobile app to suggest new releases based on a customer’s past purchases, enticing them to visit the store.

They can also leverage gamification as a way to learn more about their customers. First-party data is the best data source to personalize content for your customers as it’s the most reliable.

The Future of Retail With Hyper-Personalization

As we look to the future of retail, it’s clear that hyper-personalization will continue to play a crucial role in meeting evolving customer expectations. By leveraging advanced data collection methods, retailers can gain deeper insights into each customer’s unique preferences.

This enables them to tailor every aspect of the shopping experience, from personalized product recommendations on the homepage to targeted marketing campaigns that resonate with individual consumers.

The fact is incorporating personalization into retail operations is essential for maintaining the high level of connection that customers now expect. As hyper-personalization becomes the norm, retailers who embrace it will be better positioned to meet and exceed customer expectations.

Considering how competitive the retail industry is, it becomes even more important to maintain customer attention, something brands can achieve by prioritizing video over other mediums. Idomoo’s Next Generation Video Platform transforms data into an engaging digital experience.

Curious how it all works? Let’s chat.

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