The importance of differentiated marketing in the digital age: how does the relationship with the customer change?


The large consumer market stands out (also) for its “vastness” and its ability to “contain multitudes”. But without bothering poetic expressions, let us just remember that variety and diversity are the main characteristics of this world . Those marketing operators who daily try to extricate themselves between needs and desires know this well of consumers , developing increasingly refined strategies.

In this article, we will see together what is differentiated marketing , trying to understand why this context remains one of the most discussed among professionals and among the great scholars.

Strategies and definitions

Every consumer is first and foremost an individual, with his preferences and his needs (to be met, and also in a hurry). We have repeated this axiom often and in contexts that are also profoundly different from each other. But behind what may appear to be a simple observation lies the big problem of every business system . No one (or almost) can afford “tailor-made” products or services on the user, for example, renouncing the quantitative aspect of production.

esempio di strategia, icona di marketing differenziato

The question can be summarized by looking at the strategies and the definitions adopted by the operators when they segment (the term we will return to later) the market.

From scholars like Kotler and Armstrong [cf. 2006] we have learned that it is possible to distinguish between three basic types of strategies for market coverage and communication:

  • Undifferentiated marketing (when a company targets the entire consumer market with a single product / service offer);
  • Differentiated marketing (when addressing different market segments with particular products aimed at each of them);
  • (e) Concentrated marketing (when addressing a single market segment, a strategy that often involves small businesses);

Starting from these definitions – although reduced to the bone, but still useful for the purposes we have set ourselves – we see the second type more closely between the strategies we have just listed.

Differentiated Marketing is associated with a different method of communication segment by segment, creating a Differentiated Communication that is distinguished by type of needs, conditions of use, communication, etc.

Examples of differentiation

  1. different messages between customers and simple contacts;
  2. separate mails and promotions depending on the number of orders, customer loyalty;
  3. diversified messages according to the customer’s favorite products;
  4. different e-mails and promotions depending on the behavior behavior (behavior) of the client;

Despite the great quantitative evolution of digital communication, today companies communicate online in a largely undifferentiated way. Often, they send the same information to their prospects and their market massively, not taking into account the great difference between the needs and conditions of different customers and potential customers.

Yet marketing and differentiated communication are far more effective than marketing and undifferentiated communication .

In the next paragraph, some concrete examples.

“Think different”

When we talk about segmentation – in essence – we are talking about defining target markets . For example, we can talk about it in the following terms:

The segmentation process is that for which a market splits into single ( target ) units that are then re-aggregated – on the basis of variables – into more or less large social and economic groups, called “segments”.

( Wikipedia )

In these terms, we understand why differentiated marketing is said, in fact, also segmented . But, putting aside for a moment the semantics, the starting point of this perspective concerns the definition of the so-called mass market .

Moreover, there are many companies that start large scale productions and promotions, looking at the possibility of reaching a large number of consumers. The job of a marketing operator is not to create segments , rather to identify them .

Each company can thus create an offer that adheres to a segment in terms of communication , design , price or service .

This idea, taken to the extreme, leads straight to the idea of personalized marketing ( customized marketing or one-to-one marketing ).

NB At this point in the reading, one could also add what is not a segment . For example, a segment is not a sector : that is, a context like that of low-price technology buyers.

Differentiation in email marketing

In another context we had talked about the potential of our dear and old mails . Let us take this example again with the idea of ​​reeling some data that closely concern a very powerful differentiated marketing strategy : email marketing . What is happening inside the markets and, in particular, within the digital one? Simple: we realized that our customers are not all the same , indeed. Basically, nowadays, it is no longer possible to communicate in a flat and linear way , but it is necessary to vary the messages according to the recipient, his background and his interests.

So let’s see some statistics that objectively show us how a personalized message is much more effective than an undifferentiated message, taking, for example, email marketing into account. Thus, the customization or differentiation of messages is the most correct way to go, or so it seems.

Email marketing data

At the beginning of the year, some authoritative sources such as Statista , DMA , GetResponse ,   Radicati and others, had reported some data related to 2017, plus other projections that confirm the importance of a differentiated marketing strategy .

  1. According to “Campaign Monitor”, US marketing experts have verified an increase of up to 760% with segmented mail marketing campaigns;
  2. According to “Mailchimp” the differentiated communication by email produces a 31% increase in the opening rate and over 100% for the click rate ;
  3. Customizing the Body Never l produces an increase of 29.95% open rate and click rate of 5% compared to non-personalized email (GetResponse);
  4. the Personalization of the Mail Object produces an increase of 29.3% (MarketingSherpa);
  5. 72% of customers open an email based on a discount and a personalized object (Campaign Monitor);
  6. Transactional e-mails have an opening rate of 8 times greater than ever in the mass (Experian);

It seems clear that   from the differentiation of the message – depending on the information on the customer – there are significant increases in the rate of opening and click rate; and only in this way the message becomes considerably more efficient.  

We can conclude that the undifferentiated marketing – that is the communication of a single indistinct message addressed to a plurality of customers and contacts with different needs and with different habits – is a “primitive” activity compared to the state of advancement of technology and digital communication .

Such communications are always often closer to the concept of spam, because they are not related to the needs of the customer and / or the final contact.

Differentiated marketing with White Rabbit

If you have reached this point in reading this article we can not but thank you and – why not – propose our solution. In recent years, we have developed White Rabbit , a suite designed to integrate all the tools related to the management and planning of online business to a very powerful CRM .

If your idea is to turn to an increasingly complex market that requires various methods of communication able to customize more and more your offer, White Rabbit allows you to manage web portals , eCommerce , social pages and, of course, implement an effective system email marketing.

The Customer Survey function offers the possibility to submit to all contacts, or only a part of them, surveys and satisfaction questionnaires related to the services offered by your company. Thanks to the Marketing Automation you will be able to undertake multiple communication paths; but above all, you can choose them based on the reactions of each customer. For example, you will get answers to these kinds of questions:

  • Did you open / receive the first emails?
  • Did you click on the email?
  • Did you visit our site?
  • He bought?

Depending on the reactions of our prospects you will be able to develop specific activities and customize all subsequent communications .

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