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Modeling Partial Customer Churn: On the Value of First Product-Category Purchase Sequences

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Author Info

  • V. L. MIGUÉIS

    ()

  • D. VAN DEN POEL
  • A.S. CAMANHO
  • J. FALCAO E CUNHA

Abstract

Retaining customers has been considered one of the most critical challenges among those included in Customer Relationship Management (CRM), particularly in the grocery retail sector. In this context, an accurate prediction whether or not a customer will leave the company, i.e. churn prediction, is crucial for companies to conduct effective retention campaigns. This paper proposes to include in partial churn detection models the succession of first products’ categories purchased as a proxy of the state of trust and demand maturity of a customer towards a company in grocery retailing. Motivated by the importance of the first impressions and risks experienced recently on the current state of the relationship, we model the first purchase succession in chronological order as well as in reverse order, respectively. Due to the variable relevance of the first customer-company interactions and of the most recent interactions, these two variables are modeled by considering a variable length of the sequence. In this study we use logistic regression as the classification technique. A real sample of approximately 75,000 new customers taken from the data warehouse of a European retail company is used to test the proposed models. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve and 1%, 5% and 10% percentiles lift are used to assess the performance of the partial-churn prediction models. The empirical results reveal that both proposed models outperform the standard RFM model.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration in its series Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium with number 12/790.

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Length: 16 pages
Date of creation: May 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rug:rugwps:12/790

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Related research

Keywords: Marketing; Customer relationship management; Churn analysis; Predictive analytics; Sequence analysis; Retailing; Classification; Logistic regression;

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References

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  1. Knox, Simon, 1998. "Loyalty-based segmentation and the customer development process," European Management Journal, Elsevier, vol. 16(6), pages 729-737, December.
  2. Prinzie, Anita & Van den Poel, Dirk, 2006. "Investigating purchasing-sequence patterns for financial services using Markov, MTD and MTDg models," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 170(3), pages 710-734, May.
  3. J. Burez & D. Van Den Poel, 2005. "CRM at a Pay-TV Company: Using Analytical Models to Reduce Customer Attrition by Targeted Marketing for Subscription Services," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 05/348, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  4. Van den Poel, Dirk & Buckinx, Wouter, 2005. "Predicting online-purchasing behaviour," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 166(2), pages 557-575, October.
  5. A. Prinzie & D. Van Den Poel, 2005. "Incorporating sequential information into traditional classification models by using an element/position- sensitive SAM," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 05/292, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  6. J. Burez & D. Van Den Poel, 2008. "Handling class imbalance in customer churn prediction," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 08/517, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  7. B. Larivière & D. Van Den Poel, 2004. "Predicting Customer Retention and Profitability by Using Random Forests and Regression Forests Techniques," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 04/282, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  8. Buckinx, Wouter & Van den Poel, Dirk, 2005. "Customer base analysis: partial defection of behaviourally loyal clients in a non-contractual FMCG retail setting," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 164(1), pages 252-268, July.
  9. K. Coussement & D. Van Den Poel, 2006. "Churn Prediction in Subscription Services: an Application of Support Vector Machines While Comparing Two Parameter-Selection Techniques," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 06/412, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  10. A. Prinzie & D. Van Den Poel, 2007. "Predicting home-appliance acquisition sequences: Markov/Markov for Discrimination and survival analysis for modeling sequential information in NPTB models," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 07/442, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  11. Jan Roelf Bult & Tom Wansbeek, 1995. "Optimal Selection for Direct Mail," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 14(4), pages 378-394.
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Cited by:
  1. Takanobu Nakahara & Katsutoshi Yada, 2012. "Analyzing consumers’ shopping behavior using RFID data and pattern mining," Advances in Data Analysis and Classification, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 355-365, December.

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