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Personalisation through AI viewed as a key growth driver for brands

AI-driven personalisation is being embraced by most businesses in order to help drive business growth, according to research from Twilio.

The global survey of 5oo business managers and decision-makers, and 3,001 consumers, found that 92% of businesses are now using AI-driven personalisation to drive business growth, with 81% also believing that AI technology has the potential to positively impact customer experiences.

Customer retention is cited as being the top benefit of personalisation amongst 62% of business leaders, while nearly 60% say it is an effective strategy for acquiring new customers.

While businesses are keen to utilise AI, their data may be lacking to make it truly effective. Only 50% of global companies stated that getting accurate data for personalisation is a struggle, and 31% point to poor quality data as a major obstacle in leveraging AI. The challenge is particularly evident in Europe, with 42% of business leaders citing data silos as one of the biggest challenges they face to personalisation, compared to 26% globally.

More positively, 97% of businesses are taking steps to address consumer privacy concerns, with most investing in better technology to manage customer data.

“AI has the potential to enhance the toolkit of every marketer and CX professional so they can meet growing customer demand for personalisation. However, there is still a lot of work to do for brands to reassure consumers and they must prioritise building trust and transparency. Real-time, first-party data will be key here for brands to maximise the potential of AI thoughtfully and responsibly,” said Sam Richardson, Customer Engagement Consultant at Twilio.

Despite the desire of businesses to use AI to improve customer experiences, consumers themselves aren’t as comfortable with the use of AI. Only 36% of European consumers are comfortable with companies using AI toe personalise experiences, and just 49% trust brands to keep their personal data secure and use it responsibly.

This is interesting when you take into account that consumers are increasingly valuing personalisation. Over half (51%) of European respondents say they will become repeat buyers after a personalised experience.

Unsurprisingly, digital natives are more influenced by personalisation, and more willing to embrace AI. Among Gen Z consumer, 33% already expect AI to be used in their interactions with brands, while 72% have been influenced to make a purchase by personalised experiences.

“There is a big opportunity for brands to build customer loyalty and lifetime value by engaging consumers with tailored experiences. And, ultimately, companies that provide a clear understanding of how customer data is being used will be best equipped to establish a strong foundation for successful personalisation efforts,” said Richardson.