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Drapers Digital Forum: 'Personalisation is over-rated', says Boohoo marketing boss

Speaking at the Drapers Digital Forum today, marketing director Richard Clark said he thinks “personalisation is a bit overrated” at the individual customer level and that retailers should focus on segmenting customers into groups.

Joining co-founder and chief executive Carol Kane on stage at the London-based event for her presentation on life as a pure play retailer, he said that in reality “there are lots of groups of people that behave [and shop] in very similar ways”.

“I think the personalisation route can be limiting, Intead I think there should be some degree of mass personalisation [by group]. Retailers should be looking at how they can better target content for those specific groups, rather than the individual.”

Talking about the success of the Manchester-based etailer since its launch in 2006, Kane described Boohoo’s broad offer, and the fact that it caters to so many different customers through its various sub-brands such as activewear line BoohooFit, Boohoo Petite, its mainline womenswear and menswear, the latter of which launched for autumn 13, upcoming denim line Boohoo Blue and a men’s tailoring line, both of which will launch for autumn 15. “We are very inclusive as a brand. Growing your proposition makes you more relevant,” she said.

Boohoo’s menswear currently accounts for around 8% of the business, a figure which Kane said she is happy with. “It is about what I expected. It is always difficult as a womenswear retailer to break into the menswear market. But its very much the same customer - one that wants new product constantly - and we knew our female customers had boyfriends, brothers, fathers and friends [so it was about tapping into that].”



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