Describing what Personalized URLs (PURLs) are, let alone the benefits of PURLs, can sometimes seem like an overwhelming task. When somebody asks me what I do, the conversation typically goes something like this..
Are you familiar with landing pages?
I created an online application that personalizes those landing pages to the person viewing it.
– How does that work?
Well, there are typically links to a website on emails and junk mail you get… right?
Purlem will personalize those links by actually adding the persons name to the link itself. So instead of honda.com, it would be JoeSmith.honda.com. And when Joe visits his “Personalized URL,” that landing page would be personalized to him. Say… “Hi Joe, thank you for purchases your ’07 Accord from us last year. We see that your up for an oil change. Bring this coupon in for an oil change on us.”
– The response is usually an inquisitive or slightly confused… Ahhhh ?
The other day I cam across an article by Chris Fuller – “4 Ways PURLs Can Enhance Your Intelligent Systems Marketing.” I thought that it very precisely and simply articulated the benefits of PURLs for those that had no idea. So when your trying to describe PURLs to customers or prospects that still just dont get it, maybe some of Chris’ suggestions will help…
- Online and offline can work together. Digital is definitely overpowering print as a vehicle for marketing, but with a PURL you can jumpstart your print piece. When people see a print piece with personalized content they may be that much more inclined to check it out.
- Easy to use. One snag you may come across in digital is long, unmanageable URLs that destroy the ascetics of any design and are practically impossible to type into a browser, unless you use a program that shortens URLs. PURLs, on the other hand, are automatically organized, easy to read, and easy to type. Plus, they are easy to remember.
- Sharing. With a PURL you can affect a recipient on a more personal, emotional level. The content may feel more important to them or more interesting to pass on. Therefore, you are not only going to hit the recipient, but the recipient may pass it along; for example, through social networks like Facebook, Twitter or Google+, or through email, text, or IM. Your content will spread exponentially. SquareTrade ran an incentive based PURL campaign to 18,000 recipients. With the ability to easily share the link the campaign brought in 60,000 shares and $100,000 in sales (read full case study).
- Tracking. With the advancements in metrics and site analytics you are now able to track who comes to your website and how. What better way to do this than through a PURL. You will directly see who came to your, as well as, how many people they shared it with.