Best Practice in Data-driven Marketing — Sainsbury


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If you are looking for the best in optimizing offers and communications to maximize customer lifetime value, check out this article on Sainsbury, one of the top retailers in the UK.

Sainsbury and Tesco have long been renowned for their ability to analyze customer data and take actions to personalize their customer marketing. They analyze the results constantly, and take quick steps to improve performance, over and over.

In this example, Sainsbury mines through over 15 billion lines of transaction data, to make split-second decisions at the cash-register that select offer, discount percent and type of product for each individual customer, in order to optimize customer lifetime value.

While most companies cannot yet achieve such a level of personalization, this example provides a lesson of how far it is possible to go in leveraging customer data to improve customer experience and profitability. Enjoy.

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Using data to create offers that will appeal to shoppers in a split second has boosted Sainsbury’s growth and justified its decision to poach Andrew Mann, its director of insight and loyalty, from Tesco.

One of the biggest innovations he has helped to drive using Nectar has been Coupon at Till. While simple enough to hand to shoppers at the checkout, behind the scenes it involves a ferocious level of data integration, mining and analysis involving 15 billion lines of data. After segmentation and modelling, business rules are applied to create nearly 1,200 different coupons, each targeted by type of offer, strength of discount and other key dimensions. So less loyal customers will get more money off, for example. All of this is delivered in real-time the moment a customer swipes their Nectar card at a till. It won a Data Strategy Award for Best Use of Data in Retail 2010.


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Republished with author's permission from original post.

Mark Price
Mark Price is the managing partner and founder of LiftPoint Consulting (, a consulting firm that specializes in customer analysis and relationship marketing. He is responsible for leading client engagements, e-commerce and database marketing, and talent acquisition. Mark is also a RetailWire Brain Trust Panelist, a blogger at and a monthly contributor to the blog of the Minnesota Chapter of the American Marketing Association.


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