AT&T: Interim VP of Marketing

AT&T’s Worldnet service is one of the top dial-up Internet Service Providers in the United States, and is the winner of several industry accolades, including Best ISP for two years running in Network World’s October 2002 “Best of the Tests.”

Business problem
In 2002, AT&T believed the dial-up Internet service industry was at a critical crossroads. With consumer Internet service at near saturation point – almost 100 percent of PC households currently subscribe to an Internet service account – the primary basis for competition going forward would be consumer segmentation and differentiation. AT&T Worldnet was looking to turbo charge its segmentation marketing, and needed a seasoned marketing executive knowledgeable about the consumer Internet space to lead this effort.

Ed stepped in as interim VP of Marketing for AT&T Worldnet’s Segmentation Marketing team. Starting from scratch, Ed began by assembling a team of marketing professionals, while following a two-track path: initiating and managing a large-scale segmentation research effort to identify naturally occurring customer segments, while simultaneously building and rolling out differentiated offers based on several segmentation hypotheses already in place. Some of these differentiated offers involved customization of the product and cementing new external relationships.

After this four-month engagement, Ed achieved a number of goals in establishing the team and getting segmentation marketing efforts underway. Specific accomplishments included:

  • Fully staffed a segmentation marketing team of approximately 10 individuals
  • Evangelized the importance and workings of segmentation marketing throughout the organization
  • Completed a major segmentation research and analysis project, from RFP to final analysis
  • Launched and filled the pipeline with a number of new differentiated segment offers
  • Negotiated and sealed new alliances in support of the segmentation marketing effort