Climb the Personalization Maturity Ladder

See how global businesses prioritize personalization as the key to delivering superior customer experiences.

Personalization is no longer a secret weapon; it’s a must-have. Especially now, with experts from McKinsey predicting COVID-19 has propelled consumer and business digital adoption forward by several years. As a result, organizations have been forced to transform the way they operate, prioritizing the tailoring of customer experiences to not only meet rising demands but also edge out the competition.

To better understand the state of personalization maturity, every year, we generate and analyze the responses from our personalization maturity self-assessment test. This marks the fourth consecutive year reporting on the results of our findings.

How we evaluate personalization maturity

We survey marketers, executives, developers, and other key stakeholders involved in customer experience design across the globe to learn about their organization's current technology stack, organizational structure, and internal commitment to personalization. Respondents are representative across demographic profiles and industries.

The survey explores four stages of personalization maturity: absent, basic, advanced, pioneer, based on an organization’s ability to unify data, dedicate resources to drive personalization, visionary outlook, and more.

The Lowdown

  • Absent Definition: Personalization is not yet present across digital properties. This could be because the organization was not sure what was possible technologically or never made personalization a core priority.
  • Basic Definition: Organizations that deploy basic levels of personalization, usually channel-specific and with limited segmentation capabilities.
  • Advanced Definition: Organizations that have already established some processes and testing roadmaps to inform their personalization efforts.
  • Pioneer Definition: Organizations that have already overcome many challenges that come with adopting a customer-first approach through personalization.
Culture The organization sees the value in delivering superior, individualized customer experiences.
Leadership Personalization is prioritized as a company-wide strategic initiative.
Resources The organization invests in creating processes and designating owners to personalization.
Processes A centralized team drives personalization and translates strategies into impactful deployments.
Technology Personalization technology is deeply integrated within the tech stack, using all available consumer data.
Data Data-driven decision-making is effective and leveraged from data collected across all customer channels.
User-Centricity The organization is able to personalize customer experiences based on a single view of the customer.
Impact The organization can share personalization success stories and prove its potential impact on business growth.
Region

Belief in the value of personalization has not wavered over the last 4 years.

At 93%, the vast majority of companies shared that they either believe in the value personalization, understand its benefits to the larger business strategy, or have made it the core to their customer experience operations.

But this year, companies have finally set aside resources and aligned key stakeholders to bring personalization to life.

More than half of global organizations now have on-demand or fully dedicated resources available for personalization. And only 13% reported they are short on time or money, a 9% decrease from 2020. Teams have also prioritized standardizing essential and strategic processes to effectively manage and scale their programs.

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This has led to more organizations reporting a greater ability to tailor experiences than in years past.

Up from merely 10% last year, 31% of companies shared that they can now personalize most digital interactions, a huge positive signal for 2021. As a result, the number of success stories are also on the rise, with 35% now able to tie their work to key business metrics.

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Pandemic’s acceleration of digital synchronous with advancements in personalization

Despite the challenges businesses have had to overcome following the onset of COVID-19, the majority have been able to push forward, lean into digital, and generate real, long-term value.

As a result, for the first time in four years, belief in the value of personalization is being actualized across the globe. More companies have prioritized the right resources and processes for success, bringing the level of maturity up to Advanced.

To not only keep pace but also continue the market’s evolution, leaders and marketers alike will have to push for continued resources, most notably in the area of technology, where cohesive and powerful personalization across the customer journey cannot be achieved without a unified stack.

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Who Participated?

Geographies

AMER 29%
EMEA 44%
APAC 27%

Industries

Travel 5%
Media 8%
Finserve 8%
Gaming 11%
Tech 19%
eCommerce 49%

Annual Revenue

Under
$10M
54%
$50M - $250M 10%
$250M+ 16%
$10M - $50M 20%

Company Size

1-50
employees
51%
201-500
employees
10%
501+
employees
15%
51-200
employees
23%

Job Roles

Managers 53%
VP-Level 9%
C-Level 14%
Director 24%

Job Functions

Marketing 51%
C-Suite 6%
IT 8%
CX 10%
Merchandising 10%
Product 16%

Discover Your Company’s Personalization Maturity Level

Answer 16 questions to discover your company’s digital maturity.

Begin Self-Assessment
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