Customer Framework Development

A key component to any strategic marketing, branding or innovation project is market segmentation.  EquiBrand uses the term “customer framework” vs. “customer segmentation” to reflect a more robust, foundational set of deliverables

  • A customer framework is a way of looking at a particular product category by identifying distinct segments of customers whose motivations and behavior will fundamentally differ from each other
  • It flows from the perspective that all customers are not alike – and individual customer groups will seek out different brands for different reasons and for different need states
  • A customer framework is not just a piece of research – it informs how a company approaches its market(s) and structures brand and business development

The customer framework can either be hypothesized qualitatively or developed through a quantified segmentation study.  The diagram on the right illustrates information obtained through framework development:

Segmentation Development

Goal

  • To successfully design and execute the customer segmentation research, determine the optimal segmentation solution and prepare the comprehensive customer framework

Major Activities

  • Develop research design and survey, working closely with the client team. An online survey is typically recommended, as a proven, cost-effective method for segmentation research. Potential areas of study: attitudes/motivations, unmet needs, product usage and purchase behavior, competitive brand imagery, and demographics
  • Finalize, program and field questionnaire, including client approval
  • Finalize segmentation iterations, and hold work session to review and select a segment solution
  • Thoroughly analyze data and develop customer framework, including marketing target selection criteria and recommendations
  • Hold work session(s) to review segmentation analysis and confirm marketing target(s)

Key Deliverables

  • Agreed-upon research design and research instrument
  • Segmentation solutions and complete data tabs
  • Quantified segmentation framework, integrating attitudes and behaviors, key issues and implications, across the following: 1) Deep understanding of client brand imagery vs. competitors; 2) Functional benefits and brand personality; gap vs. ideal; and 3) A definition of portfolio management opportunities vs. a collection of brands and products designed to maximize incremental volume, minimize cannibalization
  • Potential need gaps and “white space” opportunities for future growth
  • Client-confirmed targets as an input to qualitative research (i.e., recruiting specs, etc.)
  • Identification of 4 – 5 high potential for positioning areas for key brand(s)

Key outputs of this step are used as an input into concept development and optimization.