Experience-Based Segmentation


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Companies traditionally segment on the basis of demographics, spend or in more sophisticated companies by need, lifestyle or occasion. Yet in the new world of Customer Experience Management where goods and services are increasingly treated as commodities how useful are these criteria?

If customers make their decision to buy from you based on their Experience, why don’t you segment by Experience?

It is not often that a new way of segmenting comes along but ‘Experience-based Segmentation’ along with CE metric development feels like a compelling market need. So how would you do it?

Well firstly you need to understand ‘what is Customer Experience; if you are going to set your segments against it. This is where the Beyond Philosophy definition comes into play:

“A Customer Experience is an interaction between an organization and a customer as perceived through a customer’s conscious and subconscious mind. It is a blend of an organization’s rational performance, the senses stimulated and emotions evoked… and intuitively measured against customer expectations across all moments of contact.”

In other words, we define our segments against a holistic set of criteria – how the customer reacts to the quality of the experience rationally, emotionally and subconsciously. This is quite a set of criteria and requires advanced modelling skills. But this is no mere mathematical exercise; assuming that all customers react in the same way to the Experience is completely nonsensical.

It’s easy to see how visitors to New York might divide into ‘love’ the Yellow Taxi Experience and ‘loathe it’ even when the benefits they seek – to get from point A to B – and day for instance their ages are exactly the same.

Experience-based segmentation also gets companies thinking about how else they can attract customers? Cerritos library, for instance, intuitively did this with the Mall style design of their world famous library:

“When we imagined the library we thought, what is the hardest group to attract? This was the 12–25 age group, junior high school, pre-teens through colleges, who in most communities were not in the library. What is this group attracted to? Mall structures, where they can see their friends at the escalators. So the library was made to look like a mall”, (Don Buckley, Cerritos Library)

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Steven Walden
Steven Walden is Director of Customer Experience at leading CX firm TeleTech Consulting (which includes Peppers and Rogers, iKnowtion and RogenSi). Steven is instrumental in efforts to develop the CX practice promoting thought leadership and CX community engagement and IP development. Prior to TeleTech he was Director of CX at Ericsson, developing their Experience Management Centre and also Head of Research specialising in emotion and journey mapping agency side.


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