Psychology & Personalization In Marketing: A Winning Combination

JTN Article

Psychology & Personalization In Marketing: A Winning Combination

For many of us, one of the first things we do when we wake up is check our inboxes. More often that not, this morning ritual demands that we scan through loads of emails trying to sell us something. The more sophisticated businesses will include some cursory personal details in the email—such as our name—in an attempt to capture our attention.

However, the most sophisticated (and successful) marketers base their entire strategy on the insight they have on us; personalization in marketing begins way before that email is sent.

Audience insight informs the tone of the campaign, tells marketers that we’re experiencing a particular pain point, and even the fact that we’re the kind of person that checks our email first thing in the morning.

For those of us—like JTN—who like to remain ahead of the curve when it comes to marketing tactics and how to generate the best results from campaigns, personalization is nothing new.

But, not one to blindly follow the herd, we wanted to stop and ask why personalization works for marketing.

It’s all in your head

The short answer: it’s psychology. Indulge us for a moment…

Making decisions is hard, and the greater the number of choices, the harder it is. That’s where personalization comes in. Personalization makes content relevant to us, and we’re naturally conditioned to respond more positively to relevant things.

This is an example of the ‘cocktail party effect’. We’ve all been there; you’re at a party, deep in conversation with someone, and suddenly from across the room you hear your name. The conversation you were previously enjoying then fades into the background, and you become focused on the new one. Your interest is piqued because someone is saying something relevant to you. (This is especially true if they’re telling you they’ve got you another drink…)

A buyer could spend endless amounts of time researching before they make a decision about who to buy from. Reading relevant content allows the brain to create mental shortcuts, and ultimately quicker decisions (this is called heuristics). By enabling your buyers’ brains to associate their pain point with your services, your business puts itself in pole position when it’s decision time.

Even things that seem superficial, such as the words, images or colors used, can have a big impact when it comes to personalization. These elements subliminally sway an audience into feeling a particular way about a brand. It’s why many healthcare providers choose blue color palettes, and why environmental organizations often use green. Your brain creates subliminal shortcuts to gather information and make quick judgements about what you’re seeing.

Get the picture? It’s in the framing

The way a campaign is framed has a huge impact on how people perceive the content. A successful campaign takes into account the attitudes, beliefs, and preference of the audience.

To paraphrase my ex, ‘it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it…’

Again, these factors subconsciously impact the way your audience responds to marketing messages.

Strong audience insight provides marketers with information about these attitudes and beliefs, and expert marketers are able to interpret this information and frame a campaign message accordingly.

Marketers don’t need to become psychologists. But a good understanding of how an audience’s brain works, and the ability to apply that knowledge to segmented audiences, separates out the good from the very best in the industry.

Speaking of the very best…

The marketing strategies we create for our clients are informed by what works and what doesn’t, when it comes to their target audience. We create cohesive, personalized marketing content that speaks to your audience’s pain points, and is framed in a way that resonates with them. And there’s not a Sigmund Freud book in sight…

If you’d like to hear more, or aren’t sure where to start, get in touch with our account manager, Eve, on

Psychology & Personalization In Marketing: A Winning Combination
Ashley Jenkins

Ashley is a senior digital marketing specialist at JTN Group in London where she plans and executes high-ROI digital media and PR campaigns for B2B clients in high-growth industries including Fintech, Commercial Property, and Manufacturing. Read more about JTN Group.


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