V is for Variable – A Marketing Minute by Steve Falk

 

Cookies are a beautiful thing. Especially when they’re in browsers.

They allow you to deliver a variable message to the person who’s online. For example, a person in their late teens or early twenties is watching a YouTube video, and they are delivered an ad with a video about a Kia. Why Kia? Because it was their first car. Someone older is receiving different messaging, an “older car” variability in the messaging, thanks to the cookies and what we already know about that person.

Marketers everywhere will need to pivot their strategies to survive in the upcoming post-cookie world. How are you going to remain Variable?

Start with your first-party data.

This is the stuff you already know about your customers. You’re engaging with them and having conversations with them. Don’t call them “Friend” if you already know their first name – use their name. How long have they been in a relationship with you? What are their favorite things to buy? Where do they love to travel?

Use that first-party data with variable data printing (VDP), in combination with your existing email marketing. These two marketing channels work very well together.

Email can support your direct mail.

Every piece of direct mail that we produce has variable names, variable gift amounts, different paragraphs describing whether they’re a long-time donor or a recent one. We know all of this from first-party data. Use it.

My challenge to you is, if you need to readjust your marketing in this post-cookie world, that you use variability and VDP, and your first party data to achieve it.