Forty years ago, firms often produced and sold a single product aimed at the mass market since firms believed all customers had similar needs and wants. This strategy has changed since companies can now narrow their target market. The key to successful market segmentation, and particularly to lifestyle market segmentation strategies, is information that can be collected about consumers. For example, checkout scanners in the supermarket now collect data on consumer purchases. An analysis of these data guides market segmentation strategies because different groups of consumers can be distinguished within broad markets by their activities, interests, and opinions. Lifestyle marketing pinpoints the way in which an individual lives and spends money. The target market is seen as a smaller homogeneous segment. A manufacturer of snack food may direct its marketing strategies to party snackers, guilty snackers, indiscriminate snackers, weight watchers, nutritional snackers, or other categories depicted by data analysis.
Lifestyle, cultural trends, and consumer attitudes influence consumer decisions. Strategies for marketing toothpaste used to be about battling cavities and whitening teeth. Through research, marketers have learned that consumers are now concerned with their gums and their entire mouth. To appeal to this broader definition of dental care, toothpastes such as Colgate Total have been introduced.
Marketing research has revealed information demonstrating how lifestyles are changing. For example, online computer games are