Advantages of targeted email segmentation.

by Donna Peterson

In our previous post we looked at target audience and how the fine detail of who we sell to can help us make better marketing decisions.


Many businesses will have more than one ideal customer. Perhaps different products or services are aimed at different groups within your buyer base. Or that a single product appeals to different customers for different reasons – Jane might like your product as it’s high quality and reasonably priced, whereas Bill buys from you as you are just down the road and he’s a supporter of local business.

Our customer personas help us create compelling marketing messages, but in order to serve the right message to the right person we need to be able to segment our marketing lists.

What does segmentation mean?

If you record on your database key facts for each of your customers, you’re segmenting your data. If you can find customers on your database based on location, buying history, age, shipping preferences and more, you’re all set to build a winning marketing campaign. Let me explain…

Choosing the right audience

For your marketing to influence buyer behavior it is essential that you connect with the right person. If you were to write a list of every reason a person might buy from you, chances are the list would be quite long. Now if you take those reasons and put them into your headline and copy you’re on the right track for an effective campaign. This is called benefit based marketing – we’re connecting with the audience by recognising and hooking into their desires. They want a quick service; great you ship same-day. They want to buy local; great you’re just down the road.

So how do you choose the right benefits?

Remember your long list of reasons people buy from you? These are all benefits. Different benefits appeal to different people so it’s essential we choose the right ones. After all a headline like this is unlikely to grab the attention of anyone:

Buy a wonder-widget today with same day shipping from your local, high quality, low price supplier who wants to make you super happy by delivering the best customer service possible!

Not exactly snappy is it?

So we need to choose the right benefit for our target customer. But that’s not always easy.

Different recipients have different needs

If your product or service has wide appeal you need to be able to split your database down (segment it) so you can put the right message in front of the right person.

Here’s an example.

Your product sells equal amounts to people in the age bracket 25-34 as well as 35-49. However, a recent customer survey showed that the younger age bracket purchased from you primarily on speed of delivery, the older age group were more concerned about product quality and price.

A really effective way to super-charge your marketing would be to send different messages to the different ages groups. Perhaps email A for the younger age group would have a headline of:

Buy wonder widget before 3pm and get it tomorrow!

With email B would use:

Buy wonder widget now for just $19.78

Segmenting external data

If you’re buying data in, it is equally important to segment the list that you are buying. Different vendors offer different ways of achieving this, so it is good practice to ask for the options available in advance. You can then make your selections and produce relevant creative accordingly.

The power of segmentation

To be truly effective you need to be able to segment your data in two ways:

  1. Source, so the data you use in your campaign
    You need to be able to select recipients based on specific criteria
  2. Response, who interacts as a result of your marketing and who buys
    You need to be able to gather relevant data on the outcome of your marketing too – this is how you learn and craft even more compelling marketing messages in the future.

How to segment your data

This varies from one business to the next. Too much segmentation and data entry becomes error prone and incomplete, too little and it’s harder to target your marketing messages.

For help in finding the right segmentation for your data call Donna today on +1 860-210-8088 or email Donna directly

Download -  B2B Target Audience Worksheet


Topics: Segmentation

Donna Peterson

Written by Donna Peterson

Donna Peterson is a B2B marketing specialist who increases her client's profit while saving them time. To get actionable marketing tips & techniques follow her on LinkedIn, Facebook and/or Instagram.

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