Case study: Single Customer View and new Marketing Platform for Supermarket chain

Proven IBM technology – already familiar to the client through its card-based loyalty scheme – has made time-consuming, manual campaign interventions a thing of the past


This national supermarket chain had a certain level of understanding of its core customers – supported by the insights offered by its established loyalty card scheme – but didn’t have an effective way of talking to them. And neither did it have the full picture of the ways in which customers were, in turn, communicating with the brand itself.


To understand this communication and help respond in a more personal and informed manner the retailer wanted to create a Unified View of the Customer that it could use in conjunction with new marketing technology that would avoid time-consuming, manual interventions and provide an informed and personalised customer experience. The business wanted to improve efficiency, take control of the customer experience and increase upsell and cross-sell by creating a more engaged customer.


When appointing partners to deliver the business change and technology to achieve these objectives, the client split its requirements into two streams. One covered data and the other marketing – on which the majority of this case study is focused.



The solution was to provide technology that would regulate the campaign briefing approval process and provide an automated approach to campaign management.


To do this they selected IBM Campaign and IBM Marketing Operations. And then selected a specialist team that could leverage extensive domain experience and track record delivering marketing solutions to grocers both in the UK and abroad.



This was a large business change programme that had multiple partners from the start and the project needed careful coordination of the many partners involved, early work needed to be quick and efficient.


The specialists used an agile approach and utilised the following steps of 1) Design & Build, 2) Operate & 3) Adopt and deployed key specialists for each area.


Design & Build: Taking an agile approach to developing for shorter term gain, the specialists were soon involved in most aspects of marketing planning – working alongside existing campaign managers to understand how they brief campaigns to help translate into the technology.


Operate: At the same time another team of specialists worked on campaign design and development, while a further group of marketing data leads deployed later formed to support the data strategists.


Adopt: One of the other biggest demands was careful management of the adoption process across a large organisational structure. By putting in an experienced trainer and mentor with a background in training for the software vendor, the marketing team was able to build firm foundations by guiding, directing and supporting client staff in the adoption of technology.


The result is an ongoing iterative programme that has helps to migrate the business to a new improved platform



The project has already radically improved the retailer’s ability to change campaigns and rebuild them much faster and respond to custom behaviour in flight.

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