In China, much consumer insight is locked behind the walled gardens of Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent (BAT), so advertisers are exploring how location and payment data can help them with their segmentation.

In an article for The WARC Guide to Making segmentation work, Bhasker Jaiswal, VP of Kargodata, Kargo China, explains China’s new segmentation eco-system.

This month. The WARC Guide looks at how segmentation is evolving, as brands utilise new data sources, and how marketers in markets across the globe are deploying machine learning to identify meaningful audiences. Subscribers can read the full report here.

Jaiswal observes five stages in the evolution of consumer segmentation in China, based on the increase of consumer tracking the use of tech in marketing:

The tech giants in China, Tencent and Alibaba in particular, have built their own data management platforms (DMPs) to segment audiences based on multiple parameters and these audiences can be bought directly.

The challenge remains, however, that online purchase data is not available for deep segmentation analysis, Jaiswal notes: advertisers are restricted to buying BAT’s pre-built segments.

From his standpoint, he sees a new eco-system being driven by integrating data from offline purchases (of the sort that his business can supply) to build segmentation.

“Its main advantage for Chinese advertisers is that change in offline behaviour can also be measured versus online behaviour,” he argues.

He highlights two technologies which are using the data to create these new segments:

• Location-based data platforms such as Cosmose

• Payment-based platforms with mobile wallets or offline purchase data such as Kargocard

For an example of how the former works, a premium French jewellery brand attempting to target a particular audience for engagement rings identified two key segments:

• Females who visited the bridal shop for the first time

• Males who visited at least two jewellery stores in one week.

In this way, it identified an audience of 700,000, the most frequent offline visitors to its own shops, competitor shops and premium bridal shops in Shanghai and Beijing. A total of 514,720 people (73% of the target audience) saw online ads promoting the brand’s bridal collections, leading to 299,624 clicks (58% CTR). This led to 522 conversions to sales.

The WARC Guide is a compilation of fresh new research and expert guidance with WARC’s editorial teams in New York, London, Singapore and Shanghai pulling in the best new thinking globally. It also showcases the best on WARC – case studies, best practice and data sourced from across the platform.

Sourced from WARC