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Market segmentation in the European airport sector

Paul Freathy (Senior Lecturer, Institute for Retail Studies, University of Stirling, Stirling, Scotland)
Frank O’Connell (Group Commercial Manager, Aer Rianta, Dublin Airport, Dublin, Ireland)

Marketing Intelligence & Planning

ISSN: 0263-4503

Article publication date: 1 June 2000



Details the methods used by European airport authorities to segment their consumer base. It will be argued that macro‐level factors, over which the industry has no control, have compelled airports to expand their commercial activities. As a consequence, airport authorities have been forced to adopt a more marketing‐orientated approach. To fully capitalise on the opportunities afforded to them, a range of segmentation categories have been developed that are specific to an airport environment. It will be argued that authorities act as “gatekeepers” and use this unique form of a priori segmentation to determine the most suitable tenant mix for their airport. Once operating within the airport, the retailers themselves also undertake a further series of segmentation strategies based either on a priori principles or on “micro‐level” techniques.



Freathy, P. and O’Connell, F. (2000), "Market segmentation in the European airport sector", Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol. 18 No. 3, pp. 102-111.




Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

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