Segment-of-One Marketing: Steps to Follow to Make It Pay Off

This article originally appeared on The Business Times Singapore (subscription required).

With the proliferation of smartphones and the growing amount of personal data available, a "segment of one" marketing and sales approach is now rapidly becoming reality. Most consumers have proven willing to surrender a degree of privacy and share their personal data if they receive services, content or other features that they value in exchange.

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The upshot of such personalisation for company performance: In our experience, a segment-of-one approach, implemented thoughtfully at the right moments, can lift sales and allow companies to charge a premium price for the personalised experience. A recent survey of US consumers and retailers by Infosys found that among retailers using personalised offers and promotions, 74 percent experienced an increase in sales; 61 percent, an increase in profit; and 55 percent, an increase in customer loyalty.

However, it's all too easy to build a personalisation programme that falls short of expectations. You can spend a lot of money on data, app development and analytical capabilities, without seeing a high return on investment. Many companies learn these lessons the hard way.

Read more at the Business Times Singapore (subscription required).

The writers are partners with Bain & Company's Customer Strategy & Marketing practice.