One to one marketing is a simple marketing strategy that utilizes personalization, rather than generality, to gain and maintain clients. It’s a fairly common marketing strategy that has proven to be successful by increasing customer retention, creating a better cross-selling uptake, and improving customer satisfaction. In fact, Fortune 500 companies such as Dell Computers and Amazon.com, have implemented this simple strategy.
Collecting details such as a client’s address, birthday, order history, or complaints can be labeled as a one to one market strategy. Another prime example is when Amazon.com so famously started suggesting similar books for their customers based on purchase history. This practice is called cross selling, a sub strategy of one to one marketing. Amazon’s cross selling set an extremely successful marketing precedent, and established a personalized way to market products.
The basic idea of one to one marketing is to turn communication between companies and customers into an ongoing, meaningful conversation.
It is no secret that it is difficult to convince people to buy a new product. With a seemingly endless amount of choices, what is going to set your goods or services apart from the rest? Answering this question is where the one to one marketing strategies come into play.
One to one market strategies follow four main objectives to successfully gain and maintain their clientele:
IDENTIFY - Companies venture out to get to know their future clients, making a point to be aware of their tastes and preferences
DIFFERENTIATE - This step involves dividing customers and potential customers into distinguished categories based on needs, wants, age, personality, lifestyle, etc.
INTERACT - Determine the most effective method of communication with target customers, whether be by email, personal visit, Facebook, or phone call
CUSTOMIZE - The knowledge the company has about an individual customer needs to be put into practice. Everything the company now does for client should feel personalized
Examples of these four strategies are more common than you’d think. Colleges and universities all over the U.S. use one to one as their main marketing tool for recruiting new students.
Central Baptist College (CBC), a relatively small school in Arkansas, employs three Recruiters that work to develop relationships with prospects. They first focus on their target group; students with strong Christian backgrounds and a desire for academic vigor. After identifying their target group of students, the CBC Recruiter’s goal is to get the student to the college campus for a personal, one on one tour. The personal tour enables the student to physically and emotionally connect with CBC, bettering the chances of enrollment in the fall.
Hendrix College, another small school in Arkansas, relies on a different route for recruiting students. Their recruiting programs flies 20 high school counselors from 10 surrounding states to visit their campus. The Admissions office commented, “this allows the [high school] counselors to personally tell their students about life on our campus.”
Information shared by a familiar, trustworthy person creates a more personal and feeling associated with that school, making that particular school more memorable to the student (compared to other potential choices), therefore increasing the chances of enrollment.
Hendrix College even incorporates minute personal touches, placing confetti into a future student’s acceptance letter.
These kinds of one to one strategies used by CBC and Hendrix College are common in all college and university recruiting campaigns, regardless of admission cost, size, location, or public v. private. These academic institutions recognize the value of the personalized experience, and how it can help influence a prospective student’s decision to attend a particular school.
One to one marketing allows businesses and customers to form a relationship that goes beyond the transaction, extending into personal, trust-based connections that remain over a long period of time.