July 17, 2018 - By Ginna Hall, Senior Writer, Nielsen Visual IQ
People-based marketing creates new opportunities for brands to target individuals, but it also creates challenges for marketing teams. Brands can balance these opportunities and challenges by taking a long-term view, says Louise Bousquet, development director at Agence Business.
We interviewed Bousquet to get her insights into the adoption of people-based measurement. An alumni of the French business school HEC Paris, Bousquet spent eight years in marketing positions at luxury brands, including Van Cleef & Arpels (Richemont group), Balenciaga (Kering group) and Louis Vuitton (LVMH group), where she followed the product lifecycle from creative brief to buying.
In 2017, Bousquet decided to join the family business—the leading independent French advertising firm Agence Business. Over the years she has advised marketing teams at leading brands on the most efficient and long-lasting communication strategies.
Founded in 1978 by Eric Bousquet and Thierry Ardisson, Business celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2018. Its mission is to relay powerful ideas through media planning expertise to build long-term brands with reasonable budgets. The agency manages 150 active brands with 117,000 TV commercials per year and 180 million videos online.
Here are excerpts from our interview with Bousquet. To read the complete interview and learn what other experts recommend for a people-based approach, download our ebook: 8 Experts on How to Measure People-Based Marketing Impact.
“Previously, for marketing it was pretty easy,” she says. “You wanted to address a very wide audience with very few segments. That’s the old-fashioned way to work as marketing people. Today, we want to target and be specific.”
For example, a brand might previously have focused on women between 45 and 55 years of age with children. Now, people-based marketing makes it possible to concentrate on potential customers within that group who are about to move, change jobs, or make another lifestyle change.
That ability to define and target so many individual sectors means messages and offers can be more relevant and timely than ever before.
At the same time, brands may struggle. “Let’s target, but let’s target whom? It’s such a big ocean of profiles that it can be more difficult for marketers,” Bousquet says.
People-based marketing presents another opportunity: to learn about customers’ habits and use those insights to enhance their experience. However, some brands may end up focusing too much on what customers say they want at the expense of the label’s identity.
Bousquet spent many years working as a marketer for luxury firms, and a key lesson she learned was that “brands last but people pass.” That is, the brand will outlast any one leader, set of executives, or generation of customers. Indeed, many luxury labels have been around for more than a century.
To address challenges related to customer targeting and the consumer experience, Bousquet suggests brands first identify clear answers to key questions, including, “What is our brand? What does it represent? What is our DNA?”
That clarity can help guide strategy while laying the foundation for success with people-based measurement. “People-based measurement is a tool to help you build your brand and stay focused on your customers. It enables you to look at what your customers request, but also maintain consistency,” she says.
With a long-term vision in place, the next step is to find the right mechanisms for defining and targeting key audience segments. “When you are using some tools, it can be, as I said, like a big ocean,” she explains.
Bousquet suggests looking for tools that offer easy-to-use segmentation and profile-building features. When these profiles are integrated with robust measurement, marketers can understand performance against the segments that are most critical to their business.
“If you want to use people-based measurement, you need to equip yourself, and people with good training can really enjoy using the right tools. It can be addictive to see how your data is evolving in real time.”
See what industry experts recommend for a people-based approach. Download our ebook: 8 Experts on How to Measure People-Based Marketing Impact.