Media Net Link

Target Marketing

Businesses often need to target their client communications based on well defined end user demographics. Whether for proprietary reasons, such as security or confidentiality, or simply to get the right information to the right person, information that is similar in structure can be very different based on the intended reader. Managing the communication could require costly database infrastructure, or a staff of editors that produce and maintain individual documents for the various populations. Production of marketing material on a web site is a great example, as sales literature with the same general content may have various promotions or legal content that is appropriate for one class of consumer, but not another.

Instead of having multiple copies of literature for different audiences, a segmentation system will allow you to integrate these documents into one and thereby reduce maintenance costs. For example you may have a product that you sell to the average consumer with one marketing message, and sell to a business client with a slightly different message. Typically this means creating a separate document for each consumer group. Since most of these documents are more alike than different, wouldn't it be great if you could combine them into one? By using our segmentation process you can create a single document using XML, or custom markup similar to HTML, to note the differences. These tagged documents are stored on a Web server just like any other XML or HTML document. When requested by an end user, the document is sent through a piece of software that parses the document and generates multiple copies, one for each of your market segments. Based on the user profile of the person requesting the document, the appropriate document for that particular user is returned to the client browser.

Based on server load requirements, you could use this same technology to return these documents in real time or pre-generate them whenever there are updates to the documents.

Deploying a solution such as this typically works better than a database solution in situations where people are comfortable working with documents but want to avoid database setup, updates, and administration.

MNL implemented a segmentation system for a reseller web site to deliver specialized content to the different types of resellers. The system was based on XML documents which the marketing department modified using XMetal Pro by SoftQuad. The XML documents were converted to HTML then parsed and delivered to the reseller accessing the web site using Perl/Apache/mod_perl.