Make the Most of Market Research
Taking the deeper look at the cohort helped Friesen when she updated a burial insurance package a few years ago. When the mailing was created, the target was women between the ages of 55 and 75. When Friesen set out to update the package some 15 years later, the demographic group was the same, but the woman in that group was very different. "When they did some cohort analysis, they came up with some more specific information about who this person was and how she had changed over the years," Friesen recalls. "She is totally different; she's financially more sophisticated, healthier, and doesn't think of herself as being old." The market research
enabled Friesen to create a package that spoke to this more modern customer and handily beat the control.
Case Study: Market Reserach Delivers a Message That Sticks to a Teflon Market
The Kansas City metro area was one of Time Warner Cable's (TWC) best-performing digital markets in 2002, with 80 percent of standard cable customers converted to digital cable (the national average in other markets at the time was 55 percent). But what troubled TWC was that other 20 percent, those customers who had proved resistant to all of its previous marketing efforts. The cable provider needed a campaign that would break through to this teflon group. So TWC enlisted the help of Alan Weber's Marketing Analytics Group, a Cleveland, Mo.-based direct marketing consultancy, and copywriter and creative strategist Pam Linwood of Linwood Direct Communications.
Weber and his team began by analyzing the customer information in TWC's file and using basic demographic data to segment these nonresponders into seven categories, based mainly on age and income. "When we come up with any segmentation," states Weber, "it's our goal to explain what it is. It was our intention to explain what the difference was in these segments: how old they were, what kind of neighborhood they lived in, if they had children, etc."