Blog >
Segment-of-One Marketing


Segment-of-One Marketing

David Edelman shares an article on Segment-of-One marketing and how the future of marketing will utilize AI. 

A bit over 30 years ago, I published an early manifesto about the need to take Segment-of-One Marketing seriously. It was before the Internet, before smartphones, and just at the start of when advanced analytics were getting applied to consumer data. Yes, it does make me feel old. But while the examples from the article are now dated, the core precepts seem to be holding true. Marketing capabilities increasingly drive advantage. Great insights, creative ideas, and strategies are all crucial, but the long game depends on building the right marketing operations foundation to manage all of the data, execution, and translation of strategy down to the individual level. 

Since then, if there is a common thread in technology, and especially marketing tech trends, it is that accelerated march towards a segment-of-one world — serving everyone, on their own personalized terms, at the right context in their decision journey, immediately, while getting better as you build more data from every interaction.  In an effort to keep up with the consumer, competitive, and financial demands of making this happen, Marketers have built up their tech arsenals, hired new types of creative and design experts, and expanded their analytics teams. 

But the race is far from over, and the cost of complexity from more data, more media possibilities, more personalized creative, and more technology layers, is relentlessly countering the promised lift from it all. And is it even possible to find and pay for all the added talent one needs? 

In the face of all this complexity, Marketing organizations are becoming more siloed, with focused specialists in a wide range of ever-narrowing disciplines.  From a talent perspective, it is just not sustainable to have career tracks so focused.  Instead, we need to find a way to get back to nurturing broader athletes who can be marketing generalists.

With marketing plans that have dozens of media choices, dozens of selected targets, dozens of creative variations, and multiple sequencing options, we are resorting more to offshoring to lower the cost of resourcing needed to create and stay on top of such complexity, while risking the loss of creative innovation and diluting the essence of our brands. 

Meanwhile, the pressure from above for proven results before investing in more marketing makes growth a Catch 22 when you can’t invest more to prove you can invest more.


Key points include:

  • Creative personalization
  • Marketing transformation
  • AI in marketing


Read the full article, Segment-of-One: Is the Complexity Out of Control?, on LinkedIn.