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The next generation of consumer classification

March 17, 2017 • General, Southern Africa

Simon Russell, Managing Director of Experian South Africa.

Simon Russell, Managing Director of Experian South Africa.

According to global information services company, Experian South Africa mastering a dynamic brand and customer connection is critical in the digitalised environment. Experian launched its new consumer segmentation system, ‘Mosaic’, which classifies the South African population and enumeration areas into 36 unique types and 9 overarching groups.

“Traditional customer-centric strategies in fast moving industries such as banks, financial services, telecommunications and retail are being disrupted by data and the speed at which it is becoming available,” says Simon Russell, Managing Director of Experian South Africa. “Organisations need to be more agile and personable with consumers by transforming insights into relevant customer engagements. Those that undertake a one-size-fits all approach are at great risk of being left behind.”



This is an emerging concern amongst C-level decision-makers in South Africa as reflected in the recent “Winning the Customer Era” study by Forrester and commissioned by Experian* where it was found that 70% of respondents believe their approach to customer management is ineffective. Interestingly, 85% see the need for better customer insights and 80% for enhanced analytics as key enablers.

This is spurred by technology that has enabled greater connectivity and interaction between brands and consumers. According to technology market intelligence company ABI Research, by 2020 there will be 40 billion connected devices globally – a 167 percent increase in five years. However success can no longer be built on the level of click-throughs.

“Grouping customers together while disregarding their uniqueness is a critical mistake as what appeals to one individual may not to another,” says Russell. “Simply put, mediocre experiences are not sufficient. Organisations need to clearly define their market and customers from the start.”

“Customers expect real and authentic interactions – and for businesses, this requires a complete mind shift and greater consideration towards the customer’s preferences and desires,” says Russell.

Creating a single customer view involves collecting variable data to examine the needs and attitudes of individuals. This provides insights on how to better place engagement strategies. It directs the conversation away from the traditional view of ‘what it is’ and moves it towards ‘what needs to be done’.

“This data converted into actionable insights helps businesses engage with customers on a personalised, human-to-human level, and ultimately helps brands to boost their appeal by providing the desired experience through a tailored customer strategy,” explains Russell.

Defining South African consumers with Mosaic

Experian Marketing Solutions’ Mosaic SA is a consumer segmentation system that classifies the South African population and enumeration areas into 36 unique types and 9 overarching groups. This system provides detailed information about what drives these consumers’ attitudes and priorities, explains Riona Naidu, Head of Marketing Solutions at Experian South Africa.
Globally, Mosaic has reaped successful results for clients in 28 countries across five continents for assisting businesses with customer acquisition, management and retention.

The Mosaic South African version has been in development for the past 12 months and has included the collaboration of Experian’s global product team, the local marketing consultancy team as well as inputs from both local and international data providers.
The methodology and approach is unique in South Africa in that the Mosaic code maps client customer data and allows organisations to see an enriched view of their segment for market sizing, enabling clients to understand the size of their potential market. Mosaic also offers best-in-class local and global technology, data and analytical capabilities.

Staff Writer


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