REVIEWER: Atique Shah, vice president of CRM and technology solutions at Churchill Downs Incorporated.

BACKGROUND: Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI), headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky, owns and operates world-renowned horse racing venues throughout the U.S. The company's racetracks in California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky host 114 graded-stakes events and many of North America's most prestigious races, including the Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Oats, Hollywood Gold Cup and Arlington Million. CDI racetracks have hosted nine Breeder's Cup World Thoroughbred Championships - more than any other North American racing company.

PLATFORMS: The SPSS Clementine server operates on Windows Server 2003, Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Professional or Windows NT 4.0 with Service Pack 6 or later; Solaris 8 or 9; HP-UX 11i; IBM AIX 5.2 or OS/400 (on the IBM eServer iSeries). Clementine client runs on Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Professional, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows Server 2003, Windows 2000 Server or Windows NT 4.0 with Service Pack 6.

PROBLEM SOLVED: To capitalize on the sport's increasing popularity and to better meet the needs of Churchill Downs' million-plus global customers - in particular the needs of the 150,000 members of our elite player-reward program, the Twin Spires Club - we needed to implement a technology that would enable our organization to better understand our customers coming from multiple locations, leverage that information to better serve customer needs and streamline the company's marketing activities. Ultimately, our goal is to create an environment where we are able to interact with our customers on a one-to-one basis. With this enterprise CRM deployment, we will be able to reach the right customer with the right marketing offer through the most appealing channel.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: With the Clementine data mining workbench, we are able to identify the most effective methods for optimizing customer relationships. With this solution, we can analyze the products and services that are most important to our customers and build programs that anticipate their preferences. Through this analysis, we are able to create more targeted marketing initiatives and devise more effective and efficient ways to spend our marketing dollars.

STRENGTHS: Clementine's strengths are its ability to quickly develop business models using our business expertise and the deployment of the resulting models to improve our marketing campaigns. The solution's design provides easy access to sophisticated data mining algorithms while providing the necessary support for functions such as data access, reporting and preprocessing. Overall, Clementine's predictive analytics make it an ideal solution to help us study the life cycle of our customers and build models that can anticipate their preferences and likely behavior.

WEAKNESSES: While Clementine does require some customization, its predictive analytic capabilities are the ideal solution to study our customer behavior and build models that enable us to anticipate their preferences and likely behavior.

SELECTION CRITERIA: We were looking for a solution that emphasized ease of use without compromising the ability to adapt and be in tune with our business needs. Additionally, we needed a solution that would rapidly condense categories into more analytically useful groups to provide an advanced, useful model of interpretation. Clementine exceeded our requirements in these cases.

DELIVERABLES: We are able to present a more targeted set of products and services to our customer base, resulting in lower marketing spend with a higher yield. With a more holistic view of the different levels of customer involvement, we are now better prepared to meet the needs of the Twin Spires Club and to recognize the attributes displayed by members at different levels. By generating predictive models with Clementine, we have also gained new insights into attendance patterns at our premier racetracks. Through aggregate data analysis, we have been able to determine the optimal days of the week to offer additional races. By identifying and expanding the number of events in which customers will participate, not only do we demonstrate our willingness to respond to their requests, but we also enhance lifetime value and strengthen customer relationships.

VENDOR SUPPORT: SPSS has been a supportive partner with regard to the business problems that we faced prior to the implementation. The company has been quick to react to and help solve any issues that arise.

DOCUMENTATION: Overall, it would be valuable if more information about the "art" of data mining were included as a complement to the existing material regarding the "science" of data mining.

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