BACKGROUND: The Consumer Direct organization of AEGON Special Markets Group historically operated as a traditional direct response insurance company. However, Consumer Direct marketing strategy changed from "product centric" to "customer centric." This meant that customer behavior analysis, advanced segmentation schemes, detailed campaign tracking and compressed campaign cycle time became paramount for Consumer Direct.

PLATFORMS: ideas Solution resides on a Compaq NT server accessing a Sybase database.

PROBLEM SOLVED: Before ideas Solution, developing and tracking campaigns were resource consuming and difficult to measure. Highly specialized skill sets were required to analyze customer behavior, to generate new prospect lists and to design campaigns. This created slow cycle times and impeded teamwork. Moreover, the patchwork of incompatible technology created an operational process that was expensive, slow and difficult to support. Today, idea Solution's single management system for behavioral modeling, campaign management and financial reporting ensures a cohesive, expedited and manageable process. What once took weeks now takes hours. Consumer Direct had literally been looking for an integrated solution for over ten years. It finally found it in ideas Solution.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: ideas Solution is an integrated system that dynamically allocates and manages marketing resources to maximize the value of customer relationships. The actual or potential values of individual customer relationships systematically guide the allocation of Consumer Direct's marketing resources. In other words, ideas Solution prioritizes and optimizes marketing activity: individual customer relationships are prioritized and optimized, channel utilization is optimized, and each campaign and marketing contact is optimized. Since customer life events and competition, among other factors, are constantly altering customer preferences and values, ideas Solution's ongoing discipline ensures today's marketing resource allocation decisions are based upon today's data.

STRENGTHS: ideas Solution integrates behavioral modeling, campaign management and financial reporting into a cohesive system. It easily connects to our data sources. The interface is intuitive and easy to use. List generation, test cell allocation and campaign scheduling are powerful and easy to use. The integrated modeling enables us to perform advanced optimization and simulation that were previously cost-prohibitive.

WEAKNESSES: ideas Solution doesn't yet have collateral management; however, Recognition Systems is planning to deliver this is a subsequent release.

SELECTION CRITERIA: ideas Solution was selected due to its advanced broad integration of behavioral modeling, campaign management and financial reporting. It is also compatible with our systems architecture.

DELIVERABLES: ideas Solution was implemented and campaigns were designed, tested and operational within two months of contract signing. The integrated behavioral modeling features are improving response rates.

VENDOR SUPPORT: Recognition Systems has been great. They delivered results much faster than we anticipated.

DOCUMENTATION: Manuals were easy to read and understand.

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