Business-to-business segmentation

Date of publication: June 15, 1992

Company: DOXA


This paper moves from the consideration that a segmentation strategy proves efficient only if it enables the Company to offer to its Customers a set of benefits that match their needs and expectations. In business-to-business marketing this means that the segmentation should allow to reach individually each potential client belonging to a target segment. This was the problem of a manufacturer of woman's hosiery that wished to segment the trade, as regards traditional retail outlets. The research that is discussed in this paper was conducted with the purpose of supplying the sales representatives of the Client with a list of prospects and an easy-to-use tool that enabled them to assign each name in the list to one of the pre-defined segments, in order to evaluate the priorities of the sales contacts with each prospect. The segmentation method was based upon the benefit-clustering of the sample and was aimed at discovering any possible associations among the clusters and the data that were already available in the prospect list or that were very easy to collect on the field. The segments that were constructed by means of a very friendly procedure (perfectly compatible with the way of thinking of a sales- person) proved to fit adequately the benefit-clusters, thus allowing to predict a visible increase in the productivity of sales calls.

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