Author Shana Pilewski explores why personalization is a full-fledged discipline, requiring proper education of all internal stakeholders and building of robust ecosystems to get it right

When McDonald’s announced in late March that it would acquire Dynamic Yield and use its technology to personalize restaurants’ drive-thru menus, the news underscored that whether you’re an ecommerce retailer or a 64-year-old fast food chain, serving your customers well means delivering them more tailored, personalized experiences.

That holds especially true in marketing, where personalization has become integral to customer outreach. Personalized marketing has come a long way since the days of leveraging CRM data to insert a customer’s first name into the body of an email or extending a promotional offer on their birthday. Drawing on a veritable treasure trove of user data, brands are making record investments in sophisticated personalized marketing tools, harnessing deep insights into user behavior to engage customers at the most impactful touchpoints and drive results.

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