How to Predict ‘Persuadable' Customers and Reduce Marketing Waste
An average consumer receives more than 3,000 marketing messages every day, truly an information overload. As a result, more consumers are opting out of email messages and throwing away direct mail that is not catered to their wants and needs. Marketers may wring their hands with despair about customer attrition and opt-outs, yet they still allow the organization to bombard customers and prospects with offers.
When contacting potential or new customers, organizations should keep customer needs in mind instead of relentlessly focusing on acquiring that customer. The relevance of any given communication can no longer be defined simply as serving offers that "could be" of interest—instead marketers need to suppress the offers that "may not" be of interest.
There are modeling practices that can predict those customers that will respond positively, while weeding out those that will buy anyway, will never buy, or could react negatively. These people are called the persuadables—they will respond to a campaign in just the way one would hope. They buy (or renew), but wouldn't have, had they not received the marketing campaign. These are the people companies should focus on in their marketing efforts.
The other segments based on predicted action from a marketing campaign include "sure things," "lost causes" and "sleeping dogs." At best, marketing to these segments is a waste of time and resources. At worst, it kills relationships with customers. It is important to recognize the different segments in order to know who not to market to:
Sure Things: Even if Sure Things do not receive an offer or marketing collateral, they will buy (or renew).
Lost Causes: They won't buy (or renew) regardless of anything you might do.
Sleeping Dogs: These are known as the "Do Not Disturbs." For these guys, a campaign causes attrition, actively driving them to defect.