BEST PRACTICE: Nurturing customer individuality

How to market to the individual not the masses

Many of the projects I've worked on have been in areas such as financial services, office supplies, telecommunications, IT, automotive and business air travel. In these markets, business individuals are important both as business and consumer decision makers. My definition of “business individuals” is business buying decision makers whose personal attributes and behaviour as individual consumers need to be understood by suppliers. This may extend to the details of their buying behaviour.

My listing was of markets where business individuals' roles as consumers shade into their roles as business people. This fuzziness occurs for many reasons. In small businesses, it exists because business individuals do not distinguish neatly between their business and personal life. Their telephone, their car, their computer, their office supplies, indeed their money, are used for both purposes, however much the taxman tries to achieve a neat separation.