Targeting high value customers while under resource constraint : partial order constrained optimization with genetic algorithm

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)

11 Citations (Scopus)


To maximize sales or profit given a fixed budget, direct marketing targets a preset top percentage of consumers who are the most likely to respond and purchase a greater amount. Existing forecasting models, however, largely ignore the resource constraint and render sup-optimal performance in maximizing profit given the budget constraint. This study proposes a model of partial order constrained optimization (POCO) using a penalty weight that represents the marginal penalty for selecting one more customer. Genetic algorithms as a tool of stochastic optimization help to select models that maximize the total sales at the top deciles of a customer list. The results of cross-validation with a direct marketing dataset indicate that the POCO model outperforms the competing methods in maximizing sales under the resource constraint and has distinctive advantages in augmenting the profitability of direct marketing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-37
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Interactive Marketing
Issue number1
Early online date11 Feb 2015
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2015



  • Direct marketing
  • Profit maximization
  • Partial order function
  • Constrained optimization
  • Genetic algorithms
  • Return on investment

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