Banking segmentation and the Super Bowl


As a new contributor to SAS’ Customer Analytics blog, let me introduce myself. I’m a SAS field marketer focused on integrated campaigns, digital strategy and the marketing investment for Financial Services in the US. As a marketer, I always take an interest in the Super Bowl commercials.  The $3.5M spent per spot to reach such a broad cross-section of the population astounds me. Now, I am not denying the entertainment value, but is this approach the “magic bullet” of marketing? Whether you prefer the return of Ferris Bueller or the Clint Eastwood ad (or were partial to the David Beckham spot, like me) you have to wonder whether these advertisers see the ROI on these mega-millions. Can such a mass-marketing approach have the same kind of impact as using customer analytics for smart, targeted and customer-centered campaigns?

There has been tremendous progress in recent years in how we can segment and target customers using analytics.  The ability to accurately predict customer behavior in real-time is intriguing and happening today.  Analytics is the key to understanding customers. Using analytics, we can leverage customer data to create highly defined segments, and we can tailor offers that specifically cater to those individual needs.

While the concept of customer segmentation is not new to banking, there is a shift towards becoming more customer-centric. In the past, banks were far more concerned with products and offerings, and banking is now at a pivotal point where the priorities have shifted. An increased focus on the customer and the customer experience is becoming fundamental to the way banks operate. A new report from BAI Research highlights the importance of understanding customer needs and conveys ideas on how to address them.  Banks are using analytics to optimize their marketing investment so that they can do more with less, at the right time, in the right channel with the most appropriate customers.

To learn more on this topic, SAS is co-hosting a Webinar with BAI on February 14, 2012 at 2:00pm ET. This Webinar will highlight the banking segmentation research completed by BAI and will include the perspective of Leroy Abrahams, EVP of Suntrust Bank. The panelists will share the insights and practical information necessary to develop customer segmentation strategies, and will describe how analytics is the key to finding the best opportunities for exponential revenue growth and greater ROI -- and rather than $3.5M commercials, isn't that the real marketing “magic bullet”?


About Author

Felicia Ramsey

I’m a field marketer for SAS covering the banking and insurance industries. I handle the marketing strategy and campaigns for the U.S with a focus on analytics and customer intelligence. My passion is digital marketing, advertising and finding creative ways to help sales drive revenue. I have almost 20 years of B2B marketing and communications experience working in the high tech industry. Follow me on Twitter @fecramsey or connect via LinkedIn at


  1. Interesting that you refer to it as the "Ferris Bueller Spot" and not the "Honda CRV Spot," or the "Clint Eastwood Spot" and not the "Chrysler Spot," or "David Beckham's Spot" instead of the "H&M Spot." I'd say, based on people's ability to recall the advertisers behind these $3.5 million extravaganzas, that the ROI isn't there. They feed very large, very hungry egos and accomplish little else. From a practical business perspective, they do 10x more for the agencies who produce them than the marketers paying the bill. If you doubt it, just ask everyone you see if they know who the Ferris Bueller, Clint Eastwood or David Beckham spots were for this year. Heck, just ask them what their favorite Superbowl commercial was and whether they can name the advertiser.

    • Felicia Ramsey
      Felicia Ramsey on

      That's a very good point. You're right because I knew that people would know what spot I meant by thos descriptions, not the brand names. But don't forget that brand recognition doesn't happen until viewing the ad at least three times. So one would hope that as these spots are aired on-going, we'll remember the brands, but I guess that's yet to be determined....

  2. In support of your argument, customer analytics trump Superbowl extravaganzas any day of the week. Putting it in concrete terms... A bank spending $3.5 million on a Superbowl spot will probably see little- to no impact on their bottom line. However, if that same bank spent $3.5 million on customer analytics, they would have a much better chance to at least break even.

  3. I would think 3.5m is paid for the entire sponshorship package that include these spots, media promotions, mention in the sponsorship list and more.
    Agreed, I also notice with with frustration that so much more money goes into publicity than retention, but I have a feel that there is no simple business proposition that customer analytics can put forward. I mean, what customer data can Chrysler mine to get more customers? What are we looking for? Can we confidently say that we will find anything meaningfully helping the business, even with not such little customer interaction as a car maker?

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