What is Humanized Marketing and How Does It Affect Your Business? One way businesses can stand out from the competition is by shifting their marketing mindset from personalized marketing to humanized marketing.

By Ron Sheth

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

For more than a decade, digital marketing has helped businesses connect with customers. It's helped them gather data to personalize the customer experience when interacting with their brand. Tailor-made messages and journeys are now the norms, leaving businesses looking for new ways to nurture relationships and create continued trust in what they offer.

One way businesses can stand out from the competition is by shifting their marketing mindset from personalized marketing (company-first) to humanized marketing (consumer-first).

Related: Human Design Is Your Key To Better Marketing

What is humanized marketing?

To understand humanized marketing, we must look at what came before it. Personalized marketing allowed businesses to use consumer data collected via interactions, like demographic or behavioral information. Marketers would use this data to fine-tune communications, like including a person's first name in the body of an email newsletter, sending birthday month promotions, or sending follow-up messages connected to a purchase. But after a while, these communications seem cold or automatic, especially when a data mix-up causes an obvious error.

Humanized marketing uses these same data points and takes it a step further by considering information from consumer interactions. Client relationship management (CRM) systems are essential in shedding light on customer and client goals, challenges and needs. This, in turn, helps marketers get to know their audience on an individual level for a more human approach through all the digital initiatives related to a product's customer journey or lifecycle.

Humanizing your business

Consumers care more about their experience when interacting with a brand than ever before. Humanized marketing demonstrates to existing and potential customers that your company cares and will go to great lengths to provide solutions and support for them.

Want to start moving your business toward a consumer-first mindset? Begin the process of humanizing your brand and bettering your audience's experience by trying any of these five best practice steps:

The first step is to consider how your business cares for consumer data. What does your business need and why? Revisiting data security protocols is a great place to start. Being transparent and ethical when collecting and using consumer data helps relieve the anxiety that consumers know all too well.

Furthermore, let customers and clients have a say in how you use their data. Give them choices when it comes to business communications, like the ability to sign up for low-frequency content or to opt-out of newsletters connected to holidays.

Related: 5 Creative Ways Consumer Data Can Quickly Scale Your Business

The second step to consider is customer feedback. When was the last time your business sent out a customer satisfaction survey? This type of communication provides direct and critical insights into brand and product performance and identifies areas where your business can improve. Consumers want to know that brands are paying attention to their needs. Implementing changes and providing solutions make customers feel acknowledged and valued, increasing loyalty and retention.

The third step to consider is messaging. COVID-19 changed consumer behaviors, and businesses scrambled to keep up. Don't just rest at sprucing up website copy. Look to see how your business is communicating in the moments that matter.

Is your customer service thoughtful and conducive to a positive customer experience leading to a better brand reputation? Use the review time to set (or reset) the tone of your messaging so customers can feel more seen and heard by your brand.

The fourth step to consider is your social media. Social media is great for humanizing your brand and building more insights to strengthen customer relationships. Take a step back and look across your digital footprint to see how your brand is coming across as of this moment. Is it relatable, cohesive, and genuine?

Take the time to approach the process organically and with a mindful strategy. Let your social media show the why of your brand and highlight the people, places, and things that are meaningful to your business.

Related: 10 Social-Media Marketing Strategies for Companies

Last but not least, the fifth step to consider is the happiness of the people who bring your business to life. Employees deliver a better experience for customers when they are happy. Satisfied customers drive your business growth, boosting employee morale and motivation. Be sure to include your staff when looking at ways to humanize the marketing for your business. They are the people interacting the most with your audience and can speak to what they need and want.

Related: The Road to Happiness Isn't What You Think It Is

No matter where you start, be present and participate alongside your audience as you help them in their journey with you. Automate a little less and cultivate more robust connections with customers and clients.

Ron Sheth

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

Founder & Connector

Ron Sheth is the founder of Huumanize, an agency of digital media & design experts who collaborate with businesses of all sizes to perfect their brand presence and optimize their digital kingdoms.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

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