Video personalisation and the power of one-to-one marketing

Rob Hancock,

Tried and tested

Video content is a tried and tested way of talking to audiences, allowing us to break down complicated subjects into short, fun and digestible snippets in a way that wasn’t possible before. However, video is now so prevalent that the challenge is no longer in creating high quality content, but getting it in front of the right people at the right time, and making sure that it cuts through the noise and grabs their attention straight away.

Now, there have been many ways of trying to tackle this problem over the years, with one of the most popular and widely used techniques being pre-roll advertising. Pre-roll advertising has been largely successful for advertisers; it allows you to tease viewers with a product message, or an exciting moment from your content, and with trueview adverts you will only ever pay when a viewer decides to engage with your ad – win-win, right? Kind of, this kind of advertising allows you to get your content in front of a large number of people, with a relatively low associated cost. Where it starts to fall down however, is that it still relies on one piece of creative, and one message, to appeal to everyone

The rise of personalised video content

This can, and does work in a lot of cases, but bespoke, customised content is the way forward online, and seeing a message that is crafted specifically for me and my interests will engage me and grab my attention a lot more than a generic brand ad. This is where personalised video content can become a valuable tool in your marketing arsenal - Personalised video content allows for one-to-one communication, rather than one message for everyone.

How does it work?

There are several different ways to create a campaign using personalised video, whether that be partnering with a third-party company offering a bespoke solution, or using tools available through Google, such as Youtube Director Mix. Choosing between options will depend on the specific needs and platforms for your campaign, but however you decide to approach your content production, the basic principles remain the same. Personalised video allows you to start with a base piece of creative, and then select elements that can be dynamically swapped out based on external data, such as text elements, music and visuals.

This example from Barclays shows the level of customisation that can be achieved with personalised video content. 

The advert uses CRM data to change graphics, text elements, and even the voice over track of the video based on the viewer, so Clare sees an advert that is truly unique to her. The things that make this advert so strong though are not only the personalised elements included, but the production value and planning involved to let those elements work together so well – the scripting and storyboarding in particular have been carefully considered to make sure that on-screen interchangeable elements marry up with the actors movement and speech where appropriate. And, perhaps most importantly, they haven’t overdone it – the personalised elements exist to support the script rather than act as the script, and every personalised element is charming and delightful to the viewer, without drawing attention away from the main narrative.

Why choose personalised video content?

Everything discussed up to this point is great, but would be nothing other than a fun filmmaking gimmick if it didn’t work as intended. The good news is that personalising your video content has a proven track record of improving customer engagement. Vidyard, a video personalisation specialist, found that including a personalised video in their Christmas email resulted in an open rate 35% higher than usual, and a click-through-rate 157% higher than the industry average.

The possibilities afforded by personalised video are staggering, it forces your creative to work harder for you, and removes the barriers between people and the content that you want them to engage with – if you have a large audience with varying personas and needs, you can tailor your creative on the fly to ensure that each person only sees the information that is relevant to them. The internet is a busy place, and bespoke content like this respects the time of the people that you are asking to view it.

If you would like to talk more about the opportunities that video personalisation can provide you and your brand, please .


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