Electronic Arts (EA) is a global interactive entertainment software company that develops, markets, publishes and distributes a litany of beloved games, content and services that can be played by consumers on a range of platforms, which include consoles, personal computers (PCs), mobile phones and tablet.
In its early days as a video games publisher, EA focused most of its marketing activity on hard core gamers. As the business developed, it became clear that hard core gamers were so loyally aware of upcoming new products, they needed little nurturing through marketing communications. As long as the new or updated games appealed to them, they made purchases. While sales remained strong, EA’s UK business wasn’t gaining market share. In order to drive breakout growth, the company wanted to find other audiences to target and monetize.
Questions raised by EA’s Marketing Director included:
- Is there a better way to define gamers?
- How do they fall into segments?
- How can the EA Brand target new segments?
Led by Marquee strategic partner Dave Chilvers, a UK segmentation study was undertaken to help EA identify profitable new market segments.
- Qualitative research, which aided the development of attitudinal statements
- Main quantitative study
A cluster analysis produced six (6) distinct clusters => segments, each with its unique segment profile. The segmentation revealed several new and underserved segments, including girls, older games players, and mothers who purchased games for their children.
EA’s marketing thinking, org structure, strategy and activities were all re-engineered around the new segments. In addition, new products and franchises developed for the identified segments – supported by segment-specific marketing – helped the company increase its UK market share +4% (from 9% to 13%) over a three-year period.
Following the UK’s very successful explore, segment => growth process, the work was subsequently extended to all EMEA territories and eventually 23 global markets were covered in yearly segmentation updates. Sometimes segments were amended, sometimes the current segments still fitted the market landscape and criteria were developed to trigger the evolution of new segments.
The work, Games Marketing Innovation Through Market Segmentation, won a prestigious 2001 British Market Research Society (MRS) award for Innovation in market research.
Europe (UK), Global