+49 30 208.989.780

Marketing Automation – From Persona to Personalization

Last updated on 06/03/2020 at 05:18 PM.

The effectiveness of content marketing relies on personalised content. Whether you are addressing users via email or tailoring your site to visitors’ individual needs, personalising content is key to the success of your campaign.

Content based only on fictional buyer personas is no longer adequate. The huge amounts of data that users generate whilst using the Internet can help you figure out who is best addressed when and with which personalised content. Emails, your website and your social media platforms can all serve as channels of communication. Marketing automation tools support the personalisation process.

From the Buyer Persona to the Individual

While even the idea behind the “buyer persona” represents a move in the direction of content individualisation, the technological advances of recent years have enabled a much more individualised tailoring of content than ever before. It’s no longer simply a matter of reaching a fictional ideal customer – rather, you must win over individual consumers with personalised content that is customised just for them.

Because each and every Internet user is now leaving behind an ever-growing trail of data – whether through search engine searches, website clicks, blogs or social media activities – you have the opportunity to build an increasingly precise picture of who they are. Take advantage of these new measures and get to know users before you start creating and publishing content.

How to Address Users Personally

Thanks to big data, you can get to know your visitors, leads and customers better than ever before. The aim is to identify the key characteristics and needs of your users and deliver relevant content in real time via the most appropriate channels (newsletter, company blog, Facebook, landing page, etc.). Make sure you’ve considered the four central areas of personalisation:

Tailor to the person: Find out the user’s personal information and address them by name (e.g. in a newsletter).

Tailor to the user: Refer to the pages and search terms the user has previously accessed and used. You might introduce your content with a phrase like “Hello, have you come from the website XY? Then you’ll be particularly interested in this article about (…)”. For new visitors to your website, visual signposts for page navigation should provide an overview of your content. If users regularly come back to your site, they’ll get to know the site structure and will expect content that is tailored to their individual interests

Tailor to the location: Use geolocation to tailor your website content to any visitor. The IP address of the user will tell you from where they are accessing your website. Based on this, you can display specific content that is tailored to their respective region. Showcase local news items, advertise relevant events in their area or display links to local branches of your business.

Tailor to the device: Adapt content for the user’s device (smartphone, tablet or PC). Mobile users, for example, search for relevant locations in their area more often than users on their home computers. Further device-related differentiations can be observed for the B2B area: While smartphone users are increasingly searching for concise instructions for the devices they are working on, PC users are looking for other types of content, such as detailed product comparisons.

Tailor to the customer journey: Align your content with the stage of the buying process in which the user is currently located. For users who are visiting your site for the first time, CTA elements should display only simple prompts – such as newsletter signups – while registered users can be presented with actual purchase offers.

Your content will have the greatest impact when you combine as many of these areas as possible. Depending on the usage scenario, an iPhone user who has found you via Facebook from Berlin will require different content than a London-based visitor who sits at their PC in the evening and has reached your website via Google.

To enable you to plan personalised content, you need to know exactly who your users are. See which topics interest them, which channels are leading them to you and which measures elicit the greatest response from them.

Analyse responses to these “individualisations” over a certain period of time and take your user feedback to heart. A high bounce rate, for example, suggests that personalisation measures are irritating visitors more than appealing to them.

Monitor usage data and feedback continually to enable your personalisation measures to become better attuned to users’ needs over time. A / B testing, for example, can help you test the effect of the content.

Be aware: Every new measure is a balancing act. Visitors can quickly become annoyed by an overly direct manner of address, especially if it is formulated or executed too intrusively. Avoid gimmicky pop-ups and instead guide visitors thoughtfully through the various features and content of your website.

Get in touch

How Can Marketing Automation Help to Advance Personalisation?

Marketing automation tools help you optimise your content to meet customer needs and address users personally. The goal is to provide automated, personalised content at each stage of the customer journey through the use of a data management platform. As you do so, pay attention to the following action points:

Create, maintain and use customer databases: The more comprehensive the selection of information in your database, the more effectively you can personalise your content through marketing automation. The database must be kept up-to-date at all times in order to maintain the most accurate picture possible of each customer profile.

Marketing automation establishes connections between your customer profiles and social media user accounts, blogs and emails, enabling you to make important judgements about which content is suitable for which user. You could, for example, congratulate customers on job changes or promotions. You could also make reference to the user’s previous activities (“Did you like the eBook you downloaded last week?”). Be mindful of which user prefers which channels.

Create buyer profiles: While personalisation is all about addressing visitors individually, you don’t want to be writing millions of separate cover letters or emails. Instead, create clusters of buyers with the same jobs and interests. These customer groups can then be served with appropriate content for their reference profile, preferably with a personal greeting (“Hello Mr / Mrs (…)”).

Optimise email marketing: Use the opportunities offered by lead scoring and marketing automation to increase the efficiency of your email marketing. Tailor it to the various stages of the customer journey, to individual touchpoints and to predicted future patterns of behaviour (predictive lead scoring) by means of personalised text that delivers relevant, high-quality content to the user at the right time.

In addition to personalisation (addressing the correct user), contextualisation (addressing the user in the correct way) is also important. You must integrate content in the right places on all channels and present it to the user in an environment in which they feel as at-ease as possible.

You could, for example, introduce new content by contextualising it in terms of previous content (“This article ties in well with the blog entry you read last week”) or give a preview of upcoming posts (“The next article in this series will be published on Tuesday”). Up-to-date news items that fit well with your campaign theme can also be used as part of your customer communications. Distribute your personalised messages across multiple channels.


Once you’ve leveraged the potential of marketing automation, you’ll be optimally positioned to embrace every available opportunity for content personalisation. Deliver content to the desired person at exactly the right time via the optimal channel.

Take advantage of marketing automation to address your visitors in an even more targeted and personalised manner – your competitors are already doing so!

Crispy Content Newsletter

Gerrit Grunert Founder & CEO Gerrit Grunert

Gerrit Grunert is the founder and CEO of Crispy Content®. In 2019, he published his book "Methodical Content Marketing" published by Springer Gabler, as well as the series of online courses "Making Content." In his free time, Gerrit is a passionate guitar collector, likes reading books by Stefan Zweig, and listening to music from the day before yesterday.

Crispy Content® Mailing List

100% Crispy Content® and 100% no spam!


More topics you might like

15 Content Tools We Still Use In 2020 | Part 1

We present the tools we use at Crispy Content® to realize content production. Today: Content Discovery and Content Planning.

#Decoded: Content Marketing und SEO mit Brian Dean Teil 2

Die besten Hacks von SEO-Genie Brian Dean: Erfahrt, mit welchen Strategien ihr euer Ranking verbessert und packende Online-Videos erstellt.

#Decoded: Content Marketing and SEO with Brian Dean Pt. 1

The best hacks from SEO genius Brian Dean: Learn which strategies work best for content marketing, PR and landing pages.

TikTok Marketing: 6 Reasons B2B Brands Should Use It

TikTok is one of the quickest growing social media platforms at the moment. We show you 6 reasons why B2B brands should use it too.

Decoded: Content Marketing with Gary Vaynerchuk Part 2

Learning from the "Content God" - Part 2: Learn from GaryVee which social media strategies will make you successful in 2021.

Decoded: Content Marketing with Gary Vaynerchuk Teil 1

Learn from the "Content God": Find out how GaryVee reaches millions of fans with micro-content, storytelling and an authentic brand - part 2 follows.

An Entrepreneur's Guide to Social Media Management Software

Still wondering what sets real social media pros apart from the rest? Social media management software they pay for. We list the ones that are worth to pay for.

Content Marketing: Email Marketing with Noah Kagan Part 2

Do you want to generate leads and more sales through effective email marketing? Discover tips 6 to 8 from online marketing expert Noah Kagan.

Content Marketing: Email Marketing with Noah Kagan Part 1

Want more leads and sales through effective email marketing? Discover the first 5 tips from online marketing expert Noah Kagan - part 2 follows.

The Customer Journey

In "Content Marketing 101" Crispy Content® highlights the most important topics in Content Marketing – here we focus on the customer journey.

The Conversion Funnel

In "Content Marketing 101" Crispy Content® highlights the most important topics in Content Marketing – here we focus on the conversion funnel.

The 7 Steps SEO Audit

In this article, content marketing expert Gerrit Grunert from Crispy Content® shows how anyone can perform an SEO audit in 7 steps.

Social Media Marketing Decoded mit Michael Stelzner – Part 2

You want to improve your performance on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and TikTok? Discover 6 practical tips from Social Media Examiner Michael Stelzner.

Successful Blogging: 14 Effective Example – Part 2

Blog success factors, blog millionaires and your next steps - all this in the second part of our little series on "Successful Blogging".

Content Marketing: SEO Hacks by Neil Patel – Part 2

You want to improve your ranking in the search engines and get more traffic to your site? Discover 7 practical SEO tips from digital expert Neil Patel.

Successful Blogging: 14 Effective Example – Part 1

We have collected 14 blog examples that have been successful over the last six years. And we have investigated why this is so. Here comes part 1!

Google Featured Snippets: Opportunity or Risk?

Featured snippets ensure zero-click searches, 50.33 percent of all search queries end up on the Google homepage. Is that chance or risk?

Social Media Marketing Decoded with Michael Stelzner – Pt. 1

Looking for ideas for your marketing on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and TikTok? Discover 7 practical tips from Social Media Examiner Michael Stelzner.

Content Marketing: SEO Hacks by Neil Patel - Part 1

You want to improve the search engine ranking of your website? In our series we present the most important SEO tips from digital expert Neil Patel.

FREE Online Course: "Making Content” (7 Lessons)

An online course with 7 lessons to produce high-quality digital content – quickly, easily and affordably.

10 Steps For Your Perfect Website Content Strategy – Pt. 2

A guide for content marketers who want to develop a website content strategy. The second part deals with features, structures, keywords and governance.

10 Steps For Your Perfect Website Content Strategy – Pt. 1

A two-part guide for content marketers relaunching a website. The first part deals with goals, target groups, positioning, topics and formats.

15 Content Tools We Still Use In 2020 | Part 2

We present the tools we use at Crispy Content® to realize content production. Today: Content Production and Content Distribution.

Post COVID-19: 10 Reasons Germany will be Your Next Market

There will be a future after COVID-19 - and it probably looks more promising in Germany than in most countries of the world. We show you why!

How to Do Content Production for Blogs with Airtable

In this detailed overview, we explain how complex content production projects can be completed with Airtable.

"Car dealerships need social media marketing"

The car industry has been severely affected by the corona crisis. Gerrit gives tips on how the crisis can be used as an opportunity with social media.

Content Marketing Agency – 10 Lessons Across 10 Years

With our ten lessons from ten years as a content marketing agency you can save time, money and stress by reading this now!

Gerrit Grunert: A HubSpot Interview with CIO Applications

What does an international company have to consider when choosing a German HubSpot partner? Gerrit Grunert reveals this in an interview. Read it now!

SEO in Real Life

Here we explain how Google works with a small, real-life theater game from our SEO workshop. Learn more here!

How To Create A Persona - Methodical Content Marketing

Why are personas important for content marketing? How many do you need? Read about this and more in Gerrit's new book "Methodical Content Marketing".

The Digital Transformation Of The PR Agency

How can PR agencies embrace the digital? This article by Crispy Content® reveals how PR agencies can master digital transformation in 4 easy steps.

An Interview With Territory’s Director Sandra Harzer-Kux

Crispy Content® interviews Territory's Managing Director about the hot topic of content marketing. Read about the first half here!

Campaign Management 101: Campaign Layering

Ever wondered how you can convey brand values in a more creative way across multiple platforms? This blog provides an intro campaign layering.

Methodical Content Marketing: Persona Pt. 1

What advantages does persona development have for both sales and marketing teams? What can they add to content marketing? Read more about this works.

Reputation Marketing and ROI

Reputation management has ROI? Yes! And it should be considered reputation marketing instead! How does this work? Read more in this blog to find out!

How Much Does A Content Marketing Strategy Cost?

How much does a content marketing strategy cost? Which aspects go into developing a strategy? The content experts at Crispy Content® break this down.

Mo' Money, No Problems – the Live Show from Searchmetrics Summit

How you can use an optimized customer journey to win over customers and many other topics in our Live Show from Searchmetrics Summit 2017!

Marketing Automation – From Persona to Personalization

Buyer personas are important, but how should you get your message across to individual users? Personalisation as an tool of marketing automation is the key.

Checklist: Competitiveness Analysis in Content Marketing

Only those with an eye on the competitiveness can position their content marketing strategy successfully. Here’s a handy checklist.

Return On Content Marketing Investment

You’ve invested in a content marketing strategy – but has it been worth it? We show you how to calculate the ROI for your content marketing.

Conversion Optimisation in Content Marketing

In this blog post, we show you how to optimise your conversion rate within your lead generation activities.

Content Marketing Strategy vs. Content Marketing Campaign

Campaigns are the beating heart of a content marketing strategy, not merely the icing on the cake. Here’s a recipe to try “at home”.

How to Find the Right Content Marketing Agency

Finding the right content marketing agency can be tricky. These are our insider tips:

Predictive Lead Scoring – A Glimpse Into the Future

Predictive lead scoring builds on traditional methods, but exploits the possibilities of modern technology much more effectively. We show, how it's done!

Big Data in Content Marketing

Here, you can learn why big data is so important to your marketing activities and how your company can best process user-generated data masses.

How to Create a Content Marketing Strategy

Those wishing to invest in content marketing require a tailored strategy. In six easy stages, we show you how to get one.

Lead Scoring: The Highest Form of B2B Marketing

We show you how to use lead scoring to evaluate potential customers more effectively and bridge the gap between marketing and sales.

Next Level Lead Nurturing

Turning leads into customers requires a care, time and a suitable strategy. Lead nurturing accelerates this process significantly.

Outstrip Your E-Commerce Competition

How can online retailers steer the purchase decisions of potential customers – in all phases of the buyer's journey?

The 3 Biggest Content Marketing Pitfalls

Bad content marketing is often marked by the same recurring errors – three of which are particularly severe.

Storytelling: Why the Brain loves Stories

Storytelling and mirror neurons? We explain how to use neuroscientific research to tell stories that will delight your customers.

7 Email Marketing Trends You Should Know

Those who allow email marketing trends to pass them by will soon be watching the competition do the same. It's essential to keep these 7 points in mind.

Conventional Marketing Doesn’t Work On Millennials

Millennials have announced it loud and clear: content marketing is the best way for marketers to reach their goals.

6 arguments why insurance companies should practice content marketing

How do insurance companies integrate content marketing into their marketing strategy?

5 arguments why financial services providers should practice content marketing

How important is content marketing to companies that deal with insurance, investment and financing and which strategies do they pursue?

Off-page analysis: Quality & quantity keywords

We’ll show you which SEO data is important for your keyword strategy and how you can benefit from your competitors’ success.

5 reasons hotel chains should practice content marketing

The Crispy Content Sector Review shows that hotel groups are still neglecting content marketing.

Six building blocks for successful localisation

We have created a checklist of the six building blocks of a high quality full service localisation.

4 reasons tour operators should practice content marketing

In our Crispy Content Sector Review we examine what companies within a specific sector can achieve with content marketing.

7 easy steps to the perfect long tail keyword

How can you improve your ranking efficiently and sustainably without spending money on it? We’ll show you how!

Storytelling competence check: How to spot content marketing talents

How can you even tell if an agency or freelancer can offer the required storytelling potential? We have compiled the key indicators for you!

Content Marketing on Instagram: 5 successful examples

We’ll show you how to realise your brand’s content marketing strategy using Instagram.

Content Marketing: 9 tips for a successful blog promotion

Networking, Social Media Marketing and Reposting: That's how you seed your Blog Content!

Your successful content marketing cycle in 6 steps

These 6 steps will help you develop your very own content marketing cycle.