Personalized Video Marketing: The Easy Way

by Mathieu Tremblay ― Feb 12, 2018

Personalization is a huge trend in today’s market. From custom products to tailored user experiences, personalization is where it’s at! Think about it. Who wouldn’t prefer being spoken to at a personal level rather than as one of a crowd of untargeted potential customers? Beyond the trend forging tomorrow’s consumerism, integrating personalization into your total marketing strategy will enable you to not only increase your customer engagement rate, but also to reaffirm their confidence in your brand. And that’s worth its weight in gold.

Here we address personalization from the specific angle of real-time personalized videos, a technique we know inside and out. At first glance, it may seem like a complex process, but at Cortex we’ve developed a simple concept that allows any company to use this marketing offensive to attain or even surpass its business goals at a fraction of the cost. Curious? See how Cortex generated a 20% engagement rate with a campaign executed for Desjardins Insurance, in collaboration with Studio Élément.

Desjardins Insurance Case Study 

Desjardins Insurance wanted to encourage their RRSP members to use its On Target Retirement simulator. The goal was to shorten the gap to their retirement objectives by modifying their contributions, if necessary.

To begin with, we produced five basic scenarios tailored to specific types of members, both  non-users and active users on the right track. Of these five basic scenarios, four were accessible from the homepage of Desjardins’s secure member portal, and the fifth one was sent by email. To encourage members to take action and to ensure optimal engagement, the financial information entered in the On Target Retirement simulator for each member was dynamically inserted into one of the four personalized videos. The fifth video mentioned only the member’s first name. A generic script was used, but the inserted information provided videos tailored to each individual member.  

You like results?

The results achieved by Desjardins Insurance were more than satisfying: 20% of members who watched  the video made adjustments to their retirement savings plans. You read that right! Considering the fact that members would normally think long and hard before changing their retirement plans, this engagement rate is nothing short of spectacular.

Why is our technique so special, you say?

Technical people generally think of the classic approach to customization, which consists of generating a video for each user and hosting it on a server, a bit like what Facebook does with their personalized videos. You know … the ones you receive once in awhile. But that approach requires extensive infrastructure, a lot of time to make the video, and a substantial investment, especially for a company the size of Desjardins Insurance. As part of this project, our technological creation team took a new approach and developed a real-time personalized video concept.

What does all this mean concretely?

The Cortex Method requires no basic pre-generation of personalized videos since they are generated on demand through one of the four basic video scenarios. No more heavy infrastructure, and deploying the solution is much faster! In short, our method is light, cost effective, and efficient, which is always the primary objective. For each video, a dozen or so pieces of personalized information were inserted in various video frames to create and maintain a unique and privileged link with the member. The data was provided to the page through parameters in the DOM (Document Object Model). In other words, our work consisted of seamlessly displaying this information in predefined locations in the video.

Are there any limitations?

Of course, the real-time aspect somewhat limits the quantity of content in your videos, and those limitations must be respected for the concept to be fully efficient. For example, you wouldn’t want to include a custom video in the stock video or personalize the video’s soundtrack, two things you can do using the classic approach. Both these examples require a longer processing time and generate a significant increase in complexity, which would make the seamlessness of real-time customization a lot harder to achieve.


Personalization is an increasing trend in today’s marketplace, for both products and user experiences. This is especially true in the retail industry—for example the personalized augmented reality experience we created with Surmesur, —and that trend is soon to become the norm for all user experiences. What’s important to remember is that personalization is an essential tool for brands that wish to target their audiences with relevant and efficient communications. Are personalized videos the next big thing? Who knows... What we do know is that it’s an untapped resource that will gain traction through 2018 and that you can use it to position yourself as an innovative business and set yourself apart from the competition. .

Interested? Talk to us through our chat, we’ll be happy to discuss with you!

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Feb 12, 2018
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