Applied segmentation Case Study

Turning Consumers’ Needs into Relevant Financial Products

A major credit card issuer wished to optimize their marketing budget for utilization of their card portfolio. The budget was significant, but not infinite.

The need to get the most out of that budget led to an important business question: Do we have the right products to bring to the market to begin with? Marketing the wrong products is an exercise in advertising futility.

The Process
Rather than rely on the internal, sometimes-isolated “conventional wisdom” about what stakeholders believed consumers want, the credit card provider went directly to consumers themselves to find out. We helped them by deploying a primary research needs-based market segmentation approach and learned that there were four types of unmet needs that the credit card company could address directly. And these four needs would identify a broad swath of the consumer marketplace that fit the profile. The four areas were rewards, low-interest rates, balance transfers, and security. Specific marketing and message executions were developed to appeal to these separate audiences directly.
In a twelve-month period, the credit card company was able to reduce its marketing budget by millions of dollars. This led directly to an increase in profit from card adoption and utilization of 10 times the cost savings. This was accomplished by targeting the correct, relevant messaging to cardholders based on their individual need.

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