Our identity is a deep expression of who we are. It sets us apart, unites us with others, and gives life meaning. It’s also how others see us, and when they acknowledge our identities, we feel seen and appreciated.
When marketers understand and leverage the power of identity, they can create more enduring customer relationships. It’s like diving into a pool. You can’t see everything on the surface, but as you swim deeper you discover more about your customers are what makes them unique.
Sai Koppala, Chief Marketing Officer at SheerID gets to the heart of what identity means in marketing today in the Liminal podcast “SheerID: ID vs. Identity,” a recent episode in the series “The State of Identity.”
He spoke about Google’s plans to phase out third-party cookies, and how smart marketers are already shifting towards zero-party data—the key to discovering who your customers really are. Below is an excerpt, or you can listen to the entire podcast.
Liminal: How would you describe what SheerID does to someone not familiar with the platform?
Sai Koppala: SheerID enables marketers to provide a new form of personalization called identity marketing. Through this technique, brands can create a compelling, exclusive offer for a specific target audience that shares a common identity.
When you create an offer for a group of consumers who share a common identity, it sparks an emotional connection with those individuals and the entire community. That shared identity could be a life status like a college student or senior, or a profession like a teacher or member of the military. These kinds of identity-based offers facilitate brand trust and loyalty, which lowers acquisition costs and increases customer lifetime value.
Liminal: What would you consider the difference between ID and identity?
Sai Koppala: I think of ‘ID’ as information like what is on your driver’s license. You can use this type of information to verify that someone is who they say they are, which can help you prevent fraud.
From a marketing perspective, what’s more valuable is to understand how you can build a relationship with this person. What will resonate with them emotionally? And we’ve found that rewarding people’s life status or an affiliation or a profession does this.
A lot of us associate our identity with the work we do and how we spend most of our time. A recent survey of ours found that 90% of teachers identified themselves first as teachers. When brands know this kind of thing about a customer, they can create more personalized marketing and deeper brand relationships with that customer—and the community or profession they belong to.