Personalization Psychology: Why We Crave Customization

Personalization is everything in 2018. From personalized recommendations on Netflix and Hulu, to suggested playlists on Spotify or Pandora, everyone craves to have things that serve them by knowing them.

Personalized recommendations for music you might like or movies you could enjoy based on previous purchases or viewings light up our lives.

An interaction with a device, person, or thing that is personal and customized for you leaves us feeling like our likes and interests are actually being taken into account.

Personalization is a gift. When someone gives you a fitted hat with your favorite team logo on it or a set of towels with you and your significant other's initials stitched on them, you feel that gift is more special than the rest- because it can only be yours.

Here's a guide to why we love customization.

Method to the Personalized Madness

According to recent studies, we can credit our love for personalized and experiences and customization on a few main factors: the want to control things, and information overload.

Captain Control

Feeling that you aren't getting something generic or run-of-the-mill makes you feel in control. That's because you are getting something that is different than the status quo. You're getting something created and tailored just for you, making you feel like you're in the driver's seat.

The truth is, you aren't really making a choice when you view personalized materials on a site. However, you still perceive this as control when you are seeing suggestions that are specific to your interests. This makes you feel that you have dominion over what you're engaging with.

Though it may be an illusion, it's still effective. This has an overall positive influence on your mind and sub-conscious. When people feel a sense of internal control, they believe that they are in control of all aspects of life. Feeling like they are the internal and external force behind the outcomes of their decisions makes people feel more successful and healthier.

Info Intoxication

Another reason we love customization is that it helps reduce the amount of information thrown at us on a daily basis. Or at least it makes us think we are receiving less of an info overload.

When a person knows that what they are being shown on a screen is specifically geared for them, it makes people feel more willing to engage. With customization tactics, people aren't presented with a million choices to sort through.

Instead, you're giving tailored and personalized information based on what you might be looking for. Therefore, you never truly feel bombarded with too much information because it screams of customization. This furthers our love and desire for customization in all areas of our lives.

Relevant Redux

As humans, we enjoy interacting with info that we find relevant to us and our lives. We especially love finding content that is relevant to our problems. This all has to do with a very scientific aspect of how the brain functions in regards to customization.

The brain has a gateway that information goes through before it reaches the "cellular thinking nerves". The gateway acts as a sort of filter to the information and is able to help the brain decide what it should, and should not pay attention to.

When people talk about selective memory, attention, or hearing- this is what they are talking about. Focusing on one bit of info while ignoring the rest is controlled by this magical gateway filter of information.

Selective attention means that we will naturally invest in information that is customized to our current state. This includes ideas or ventures we are invested in. For example, if you are at a party with a bunch of people chatting, you can easily ignore those conversations, until someone says something that is of interest to you.

The Name Game

Suddenly- you're tuned in. You magically start to listen to a specific set of words or conversations that are relevant to you. Those words rise above the background noise of music and conversation. When people hear their own name, something special triggers in their brain.

Your ears naturally perk up amid the noise when your name is mentioned. Science has proven that when someone hears their first name the brain has a specific and unique reaction to that sound.

This also applies to when people see their name. People are much more likely to open an e-mail that just has their first name in the title as opposed to their full name. People, in general, enjoy seeing or hearing their name.

It makes people feel connected.

Connected Customization

Half the reason people love personalized pens and gifts is that it allows them to connect to it. When someone connects to something (because it has been tailored to them), the gateway in the brain allows them to reflect positively on where they received the item.

The personal connection to it reminds them of further emotions attached to the setting, person, or experience in which the gift was gained. This will give your recipient years and years of good memories, all through one simple personalized gift.

Confirming a connection and then celebrating it in physical form through a personalized item is a healthy way to build relationships and give gifts. These gifs go a long way in the eye of the beholder.

Regardless of the gift, the best ones to give are those with the person's name or initials on them. Adding this unique touch makes people feel remembered and cared about.

When you're ready to give the gift that can't be replaced by any other to your employees or coworkers, request a pricing quote today.