Market Segmentation Criteria

Essay by M. KukoyiUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, July 2006

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Even McDonald's, which has one of the most recognizable brands in the fast food industry, cannot satisfy every customer's need related to food. However, the company has a strong customer base that consists of different types of consumers. Needs are different for each of these consumers and McDonald's certainly realizes it cannot meet the needs of these various groups by marketing to them in the same way.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) conducted a dietary survey in the United States in the late ninety's regarding the consumption of fast food. Based on the sample population, the results had shown two pieces of information important to McDonald's management. First, the percentage of people eating fast food increased from the early 1990's to when the survey was last conducted in the late 1990's, a trend that is most like to carry on. Secondly, the likelihood of eating fast food will actually decrease with age.

Thus, younger adults, to whom we plan to market the McDonald's rewards card, are certainly a substantial consumer in the fast food industry. Other key findings from the USDA research study, were 26.5 percent of adults reported eating fast food, young adults ages 20 to 29 years were about 4 times more likely to eat fast food than adults 55 years of age and older. Fast food are consumed by both genders (30% males, 23.5% females), more African Americans (31%) than other race-ethnic groups reported eating fast food, and young adults living in the Midwest (29%) or in the South (29%) were more likely to be fast food eaters than individuals living in the Northeast (20%) or the West (22%) (Journal of the American College of Nutrition).

With data in hand, McDonald's can begin to pursue the first of the three major steps in target marketing,