The Importance of Segmentation in Your Email Marketing Strategy
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Having a solid understanding of your marketing segments is important to create an effective email marketing campaign for your business. Important details such as messaging, subject line, and product recommendations or project examples all play a role in determining how to segment your campaign. In this article, we will explore the importance of segmentation in your email marketing campaign and offer some recommendations to get you started.
What is Email Marketing?
Email marketing is the process of sending targeted emails to segmented audiences that have a high likelihood of buying your product. Email marketing includes messages sent to current buyers as well as those sent to your prospective clients/customer base. Email marketing messages use a variety of different types of messaging to gain the attention of a specific audience in hopes of increasing sales revenue or involvement with a particular business. Some messaging included in an email marketing campaign might include:
- Advertisement of a new product, service, or promotional discount
- Messages to drive involvement with a business through different aspects such as events, donations to a particular cause, or volunteering
- Offers for a free trial, demo, or sample of a product
- Recommendations for related products that a current customer might be interested in
- Promotion of a blog post or new piece of content available on your website
Email marketing is a great way to help your business communicate directly with different audiences that might have interest in your brand. Email also allows you to update your audience on new business offerings, sales and specials, or important information about your business on a regular basis. Email messaging can easily be tailored to each of your market segments so it resonates well with that particular individual.
The Value of Segmenting Your Email Marketing Campaign
When starting an email marketing campaign, it is important that not every individual receive the same type of messaging from your business. Instead, you should segment your email marketing list so that you are able to target each type of audience directly with information that is of value to them, which in turn can help increase their likelihood to act on the message and visit your website.
Segmenting your email marketing campaign also increases open and click rates of emails, both of which are important metrics in evaluating success of your email marketing campaigns. Email segmentation also benefits your business because it allows you to use time and resources more effectively to better drive new business or to increase customer loyalty.
Here are a few metrics to consider when evaluating your email marketing campaign:
- Open Rate: The percentage of subscribers out of a total number of subscribers who open an email
- Click Rate: The percentage of subscribers who click a link within an email that leads to your website
- Bounce Rate: The percentage of subscribers who did not receive an email due to an invalid domain address or blocked message through a spam filter
- Unsubscribe Rate: The percentage of subscribers who clicked to not receive any further email outreach from your business.
Below are some statistics from a study conducted by MailChimp on segmented vs. non segmented email marketing campaigns. The study was conducted on 2,000 MailChimp users for 11,000 segmented campaigns sent to almost 9 million recipients.
- Opens: 14.31% higher than non-segmented campaigns
- Clicks: 100.95% higher than non-segmented campaigns
- Bounces: 4.65% lower than non-segmented campaigns
- Unsubscribes: 9.37% lower than non-segmented campaigns
Ways to Segment your Email Marketing Campaigns
So now that we understand why email segmentation is important to increase value perception for a particular audience, we will now share some ideas about different ways to segment your email marketing campaigns.
- Geographic Location
- Previous Purchases
- Engagement with your Website
- Current Position in a Sales Process
Segmenting your email marketing campaign by demographics is one of the most common forms of audience segmentation. Demographic segmentation is done through observable audience traits such as age, sex, martial status, education, income, nationality, religion, family size, and current employment. Each of these traits has a different impact on buying behavior and how an individual might engage with your website, so you will want to adjust your email messaging accordingly.
Segmenting your email marketing campaign by location is another option. Simple yet effective, this type of strategy allows you to tailor location specific messaging as a way to increase engagement with your emails. Email segmentation by location is also a great way to promote local events or products that may be more relevant to an individual living in a specific area. Location can play a role in buying behavior and income, so it is important to consider segmentation using this metric.
Segmentation by any previous purchases is important to ensure current customers receive different messaging than prospective buyers who are at a different stage in the sales process. By looking at which types of purchases are made in the past, your email marketing campaign can provide recommendations for related items or new offerings that current customers might enjoy. Acknowledging previous purchases is also an effective way to increase customer loyalty by keeping them up to date on your business and any new products, events, or content available for them on your website.
Engagement with your Website
By segmenting your email campaign through website engagement, you will be able to increase open rates through improved messaging that truly resonates with your audiences’ likes and interests. This type of segmentation allows you to better understand the needs, values, preferences, and motivations of different types of visitors and will allow you to create messaging that appeals to them more effectively. For example, maybe certain visitors enjoy your blog posts, so you could include new articles that they might find interesting. Or maybe your visitors have browsed specific types of products, so you could segment your database by those that engage with those specific website pages. Or maybe someone loves attending your events, so you want to keep them up to date on your events calendar and what they may want to attend in the future.
Current Position in a Sales Process
Segmentation by position in a sales process is often overlooked, but extremely important in helping achieve a desirable outcome from your email marketing campaign. For example, you wouldn’t want to send someone who has browsed your website only once an email to buy a product or service. Instead, you want to nurture these opportunities through engagement with your brand to establish a level of customer loyalty that can eventually lead to a purchase or involvement with your brand. Different positions within this process will require different email messaging approaches, which might look similar to the steps outlined below:
- Introduction of your brand
- Engagement with relevant content
- Transition to conversion opportunity (request a demo, sample, meeting, etc)
- Product recommendation, discount or some sort of ask (such as donate, attend an event, purchase a product, etc)
Overall, segmentation for your email marketing campaign will help you increase the effectiveness of your efforts and improve different metrics such as open rate, click rate, bounce rate, and unsubscribes. Some ways to segment your email marketing campaign as highlighted above include segmentation by demographics, geographic location, position in the sales process, and engagement with your website.