Advertising Age recently carried an article titled “The Death of Customer Segmentation”, by Michael Fassnacht.
He questions the traditional marketing hypothesis that the better we segment consumers, the better we know what is relevant and the better we can market to them.
Fassnacht argument is that:
This last point is of particular importance, since electronic media – especially websites that customize themselves based on analysis of the users behaviour and history – are becoming more prevalent communication platforms. In fact, for the last few years “mass customization” and “a consumer segment of one” have been fashionable phrases thrown about in marketing circles.
Fassnacht quotes Amazon, Apple and social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace to support his well-structured argument.
However, it may be a challenge for traditional retailers and brands to apply the learnings from these brands in their physical stores.
Going further and on a lighter note – or perhaps not 🙂 – if we are to believe the philosophy of the Vedas, the Universe has a head start on “self-segmentation” and “customization of consumer experience” technology. According to it, the world and our experience of it is “Maya,” an illusion product of our mind, and we are free to create and mold it, and experience it as long as we hold the illusion.
If that’s the case, our modern techies and marketers have a long time to go before they climb that technology curve.
The original article is available here: The Death of Consumer Segmentation?