How to Personalize SMS and Email Messages with Dynamic Content

By Emma Patterson, Account Manager at Airship

Personalization is instrumental in driving user interaction ( 88% of Marketers have reported seeing data backed improvements with personalization), but we’ve seen a major shift in how consumers respond to content. Personalizing content with a subscriber name was once considered sufficient, but not so much anymore. What consumers want now is content that is relevant and tailored specifically towards their individual needs. That kind of personalization requires understanding your customer’s personas and behavior, and then incorporating those actions into your content to create a content marketing strategy that is impactful.

The challenge for brands is finding the best way to deliver personalized content at scale, and to do it in a way that doesn’t exhaust marketing resources every time a campaign needs to be sent. The best way to do so is to use Dynamic Content, which can adapt content based on the user’s preferences, interests and behaviors through SMS or Email. Dynamic content allows marketers to provide personalized and relevant information through email or SMS, the two channels customers prefer to receive communication from.

Benefits of Using Dynamic Content for Personalization

Saves Time: Dynamic content mitigates the trouble of updating engagement lists for specific content. Rather than having to create a customized copy for each segment, marketers save time by having a copy that can be sent to all subscribers. This reduces the time spent building the various required templates.

Conversions: The most successful companies provide a customized solution when it matters most. Dynamic content allows brands to build their reputation by only supplying consumers with content relevant to their persona, resulting in more call to action conversions.

How to Create Dynamic Content Campaigns

Identify Key Persona: Group together subscribers who have similar traits or characteristics (i.e. members of a specific loyalty tier) and then align content to those segments. This customer profile should be regularly updated to best reflect each user. After you’ve grouped your subscribers you can determine how many variations you’ll need.

Determine Layout: Once you know how many variations you’ll need you can begin determining where content blocks will go and what will be displayed to each subscriber.

Add Values via CSV: Include logic (conditional comparison operators) in the content that will dictate the message that the user will receive based on the values uploaded through CSV. This CSV will include the channel ID, MSISDN, or email address, opt-in date and display data.

A/B Testing: Understanding how you’ll gauge the success of each campaign and how you’ll measure user interaction with the content is critical to creating impactful messages. Using Airship’s Performance Analytics you’ll be able to track user engagement across multiple campaigns.

Dynamic Content in SMS

In SMS, dynamic content can be as simple as personalizing your customers’ name in the message or go more in-depth by including flight numbers, departure times and links.

Example of using Dynamic Content for SMS

Dynamic Content in Email

Once you understand your customer persona and you’ve determined what dynamic elements will be displayed you can begin creating an email using the dynamic content syntax. Since dynamic content is dependent on using persona variable data, you’ll need to add code to your email to command which content is displayed. This code tells the Airship platform which action to take and what content to display to each of your end users.

Example of using Dynamic Content for Email

For a more in-depth look into the coding of Dynamic Content, check out our docs pages.

Have questions about Dynamic Content and Personalization? Contact us and let us know how we can help!

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