In marketing, it’s all about who can get the most customers and generate the most revenue, but there’s a catch. With more people going online, marketers have abandoned traditional marketing strategies and are increasing their online presence to engage potential customers.
So, how do they do it? Well, think of a movie or TV show where the characters find themselves in a jam and the only way to get out of it is to separate themselves into groups because they want to avoid danger or find a quick solution?
This same concept can be quite helpful in an email marketing campaign as well.
To put simply, email segmentation is the act of separating your emails to target specific segments of your customer list and send customised emails or content—but it doesn’t stop there.
Today, reaching an inbox isn’t enough to increase your customer base or your revenue.
Consumers are spoiled for choice with many businesses vying for their attention. Only those who establish personalised relationships can truly engage customers and email segmentation is a great way to do just that.
The case for segmenting customers
Sending out a barrage of generic emails to hundreds or thousands of customers simply won’t do.
You need to think of each email address as a unique person with a unique set of interests, motivations, and even shopping habits.
Sending the same email is in direct contradiction to this and sending emails that are properly segmented can make for some impactful customer interactions.
This can lead to:
- Increased engagement: When you receive an email from a business, it should feel as though you’re getting communication from a friend you’ve known for years. Segmenting your customers means that you now have the ability to send personalised emails that address their needs.
- Customer loyalty: When you respond to your customer’s specific needs, your brand image rises exponentially because you’re indicating that you’re genuinely interested and caring for them.
- Fewer unsubscriptions: When you’re consistently giving customers what they want, they become less likely to send you to their spam folder or unsubscribe altogether.
Email segmentation provides businesses with the opportunity to have a meaningful and impactful engagement with their clients and in return, your customers will remain loyal to your brand.
How can businesses use email segmentation techniques?
In order to provide your customers with the personalised attention and messaging they require, you must segment your customers using the following segmentation techniques:
- Demographics segmentation
- Geographic segmentation
- Psychographic segmentation
- Behavioural segmentation
Let’s take a closer look at each of these with some practical examples.
This is perhaps the most basic form of segmentation, where customers are categorised based on identifiable non-character traits such as age, gender, profession, income, and more.
Even though the segmentation can seem slightly generic, its impact can be significant if used properly.
For instance, if you’re a clothing retailer running a special offer for your women’s collection suitable for the 18-45 age bracket, then gender and age are key segmentation factors.
Executing email campaigns targeting women between 18-45 can offer a much higher revenue than sending it out to your entire email list and potentially losing your other clientele that may find this offer unappealing.
By far the easiest way to segment customers, geographic segmentation is quite useful when you want to send messages about events, weather, or similar activities based on location.
SpeechGear is a SaaS company providing speech translation software and geographical email segmentation is a large portion of their strategy to get the word out on their location-based events.
For example, if they’re organising an event in Washington, they send emails to educators in the Washington area who have shown interest in their service.
This is where customers are segmented based on their interests and personalities. These aren’t the easiest to identify because they require rigorous research where you have to actively seek information pertaining to their lifestyle, beliefs, values, and hobbies.
For instance, if you own a bookstore, you can add a section in your sign-up sheet asking customers about their favourite genres. When you get a new set of cookbooks, you can send out an alert to only those who have indicated an interest in cooking.
Businesses can also categorise customers based on their interaction with the brand and the products, taking into account browsing, purchasing, and spending habits.
By harnessing the data from your website, you can obtain information about your customer’s website usage metrics like the number of visits, time spent, shopping cart value, and much more.
Amazon is probably a company that has made the most use of this concept. Think back to the time you purchased an item only for Amazon to send you emails based on your usage of their website.
Amazon quite possibly uses all of these market segmentation techniques to send your customised content that perfectly targets who you are as an individual.
Using email segmentation as a strategy
Customer lifecycle marketing can benefit you by helping you identify the performance of your customer segments and their relative value to your business.
You have the ability to retain customers by:
- Identifying customers who should be re-engaged
- Selecting the right retention strategy for each customer segment
- Establishing retention strategies
Personalising your marketing emails to your customers based on their journey through the customer lifecycle, you have the advantage of engaging your customers with the right offers based on their unique identifiers and preferences.
This is an effective way to make sure that not only are you acquiring a loyal customer but a customer who will do business with you repeatedly.
Email segmentation can create the impact you need
Putting all our customers into a single segment and sending out email campaigns may be easy, but businesses pay a hefty price for this in the long run when it comes to retaining customers.
Businesses that accept the uniqueness of their customers and their needs benefit greatly from this mechanism, as they have meaningful and personalised engagement strategies that translate to enhanced brand loyalty, and ultimately, increased revenue.