Client Challenge Blog Series: The difference between prospects and potential audiences

This month’s theme of our “client challenge” blog series focuses on how brands can leverage their customer data and identify the distinction between genuine prospects and potential audiences.

This is a topic we have observed a lot, particularly with Premium brands. An interest in fashion and even a higher household income doesn’t put a consumer in the market for an Italian designer handbag, hence they may still be an aspirational audience.

With budgets shrinking marketeers and/or agencies need to optimise their spending in the most effective way and reach the right customers, with the right message at the right time. These three combined attributes can drive more effective and relevant communications, however, without being able to identify the right customers there is a great risk of falling at the first hurdle. In practice, this means wasted media spend, increased cost per acquisition, decreased ROI and ultimately fewer sales and fewer prospects in the top of the sales funnel.

The Opportunity:

Recently Starcount has been tasked to help alleviate this challenge for a premium retail brand specifically for its digital and social media channels.

To fine-tune our client’s digital marketing approach Starcount created a model to identify the best customers and filter out aspirational ones.

The data science team looked outside of the industry and provided a richer picture through social media profiling that revealed not just the interests and motivations of customers but what makes-up those interests. The methodology was based on previous engagement, spend and intent to buy in this category and on the assumption that if customers exhibited a level of premium across multiple unrelated industries, they could be identified as genuine prospects for a high-end brand given the behaviours across multiple areas of their lives. Compared to customers who demonstrated premium across one or two select categories it was deduced that these segments were more aspirational and only interested in high-end brands for various purposes such as status, aesthetics or other.

This model served as the basis for off- and online campaigns to drive high-end shoppers into our client’s stores and to its online shop.

The time to adopt a data-driven strategy is now

Our client’s case shows that by being specific and deliberate about who a brand speaks to and why can grow sales and add high-value long-term customers. The good news is that luxury retailers can quickly adopt this kind of consumer-based, data-driven strategy because technology has made customer data more accessible than ever.

For most brands, the keys to stronger sales and high-value customer acquisition already exist. It’s just a matter of using the right strategies to unlock the power of that customer data.

Meet the writer

James Lamburn

James is Starcount’s Client Development Manager. He and his team help Starcount’s clients optimise their marketing initiatives and programmes to make more informed decisions.
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