Once the Smart Insight profiling is complete and we have prepared the eRFM model for your customer lifecycle segments, you can immediately see them. This model is a starting point for discussion with an Emarsys Strategic Consultant, as the parameters you set here should match to your business model and objectives, and will lay the foundation for your future customer engagement strategy.

The following variables must be defined:

During this process, the following resources will be of interest:

eRFM scoring parameters

Your screens are initially populated with the eRFM parameters recommended for you by Emarsys after the data profiling stage. The eRFM model categorizes contacts by four aspects of their behavior and allows Smart Insight to decide whether an individual is, for example, a cold lead, active buyer or defecting gold customer. The categorization is done by matching the contact’s behavior to the parameters defined during setup, and is based on the analysis provided by the Smart Insight profiler. The graphic below illustrates how these parameters might look in a typical Smart Insight account.

An example of an eRFM scoring model

If you feel that these parameters do not accurately reflect your customer base, we will modify them with you until they do. For example, you might prefer a cut-off point for Recency to be <45 days instead of <90, or for Monetary to be >€5,000 instead of >€1,000, etc.

The Monetary score is calculated by summing purchases over a defined time period. By default this is two years, but can be configured to any length of time you require.

Our objective is to get you sending targeted engagement campaigns as quickly as possible, so it is important not to spend too much time trying to create the perfect segment at this stage. You will learn a lot about your customers’ habits once you start engaging with them individually and will always be able to optimize your strategy as you go.

Customer lifecycle terminology

Here you decide which terms to use in your reports, for example Small spender instead of Low spender. Whichever terms you use, they should correspond to the contact descriptions below.

Smart Insight has two categories of contacts:

  • Leads – Contacts that have never made a purchase. For these contacts, only the date of registration and engagement are analyzed.
    Please note that new contacts who buy on the day of registration are immediately counted as first-time buyers.

  • Customers – Contacts that have made a purchase.

Within these two categories the lifecycle stages are identified based on activity, and can be broken down as follows (the numbers below are just for example, and can be defined during Setup):


  • New Lead – Registration was within the last 90 days, no response yet (beyond opt-in).
  • Active Lead – At least one response in the last 90 days.
  • Cold Lead – No response for more than 90 days.
  • Inactive Lead – No response for more than 180 days.


  • First-time buyer – Only one purchase ever, made in the last 90 days.
  • Active buyer – Has made a purchase in the last 90 days, and has made more than one purchase in total.
  • Defecting buyer – Has made a purchase in the last 365 day, but not in the last 90 days.
  • Inactive buyer – Has not made a purchase in the last 365 days, but has made at least one purchase in total.

Buyer Status

The Buyer Status categorizes customers based on their spending levels using the last two years’ worth of historical data (two years is the default setting and can be changed). The actual amounts for each threshold are defined during Smart Insight Setup. For example:

  • Low spender – Up to €50.
  • Normal – €50.01 up to €200.
  • Silver – €200.01 up to €500.
  • Gold – €500.01 up to €1000.
  • Platinum – More than €1,000.

Conversion Rates

Conversion occurs when a contact progresses to a ‘higher’ (i.e. more valuable) stage through their activity. Conversion rates are calculated at the end of each day, and are defined as follows:

  • Lead conversion rate – The percentage of contacts who registered in the last 180 days and have since converted to first-time buyers by making their first purchase. New customers who register and make their first purchase on the same day are treated as direct first-time buyers and will not be counted here.
  • Re-purchase rate – The percentage of contacts who converted to first-time buyers in the last 90 days and have since become active by making a second purchase.
  • Retention rate – The percentage of active customers who made a purchase exactly 90 days ago and have since made another purchase.
  • Win-back rate (defecting customers) – The percentage of customers who defected in the last 90 days and have since become active again by making a new purchase.
  • Win-back rate (inactive customers) – The percentage of customers who became inactive in the last 275 days and have since become active again by making a new purchase.

Filtering your screens

You can now begin to monitor your screens and fine-tune your segments by adding different attributes. Smart Insight is deployed with a standard set of filters per reporting screen, which you can add or remove. You can also add up to 10 custom filters based on your own database fields, for more flexible and accurate segmentation. These custom filters come from the data tables you are loading:

  • Any field in the contacts table can be used as a contact attribute.
  • Any field in the product catalog or the sales_items table can be used as a purchase attribute.

For more information on filtering your screens, see: Smart Insight Attributes.

Proceed to Step 3 – Launching your engagement programs