Want to save 50%? Yes, please

arrows in a bullseye with an email icon
June 16, 2016
Marketing  |  5 min read

The Best Ways to Segment Your Email Marketing List

by John Rampton

In order to craft the most compelling marketing copy possible, you need to know how your audience breaks down into segments with varied concerns and desires that should be addressed by that copy. Your marketing copy will then need to speak to each segment. But, do you know how many segments there really are or realize what different groups within your email marketing list are interested in?

Before you work on creating that engaging marketing content, your strategy should focus on segmenting your email marketing list to better understand who you are speaking to. The good news is that there many ways to slice and dice that email marketing list, but the bad news is that you may not know all the potential ways to segment it so you get the most information out of it.

Here are some of the best ways that deliver the information you need to know about your customers and prospects so you can shape your marketing messages in a way that really makes it feel you are speaking directly to them:

  • Location: It’s important to know if your contacts are located or are across the world. This shapes what offers you send to them. For example, if they are local to your area, then you would want to promote in-store offers while those on the other side of the world would only be looking for online promotions from your email marketing. Also, you want to make sure that you are not marketing to contacts that live somewhere that you cannot even service.
  • Persona: The idea of a persona has become very important in marketing because it is a way to define the personality of each type of customer or prospect, including why they are interested in your product or service. Segmenting them by these personas means you will be able to target different people based on what they value and craft inspirational email marketing messages that speak directly to those values.
  • Organization Type: If you are conducting B2B email marketing campaigns, you may want to segment your email marketing list by type of business. For example, you might be marketing to freelancers, small business owners, non-profits, multinational companies, or franchises. Each has different needs so segmenting this way can give you a way to provide emails directed at how you can solve those unique organizational needs.
  • Job Function: Drilling down even further, you may want to further segment these organizations by job function because you can help different types of roles, including salespeople, marketers, customer service reps, developers, and more.
  • Purchase History: If your contact list contains previous customers, it would be good to review what they have purchased and then use this as a way to determine their interests so you can address those in future email campaigns. This can help propel your upsell or cross-sell strategies. This will also tell you how often they have purchased from you, which may indicate that you could leverage a loyalty program that would appeal to these frequent shoppers just as an additional means to retain them. The purchase history can also illustrate when they have bought during the year and how frequently. Certain customers may buy weekly and monthly while others prefer quarterly. Keeping track of this behavior can help determine when you contact them again with a marketing promotion so that you maximize the potential results from such an effort.
  • Content Interest: By paying attention to what contacts click on the most and read the content you provide, this becomes another way to segment your email marketing list. You’ll be able to send email messages that alert these contacts to new content related to a particular topic or shape your messaging about your product or service around this subject to draw them in. Beyond just the subject matter, you can also determine which format they prefer to receive this content and work that into your marketing strategy.

While there are even more ways that you can continue segmenting your email marketing list, these segmentation strategies provide a way to get to know your customers and prospects better, including their interests and problems as well as their preferences and behaviors. Knowing these will then help you with your overall marketing strategy, including messaging and timing, as well as with product and service development. Plus, you will be able to determine you will be the right customers for you so you can focus on them rather than signing up the wrong customers for your business.

John Rampton Bio Photo Small.jpeg

John Rampton is an entrepreneur, investor, online marketing guru and startup enthusiast. He is founder of the payments company Due.


Was this post helpful?

Subscribe to our newsletter

Fresh small business insights and ideas delivered weekly to your inbox, gratis.

You may also like

{{ record.displayCategory | smartCapitalize }} | min read

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

What you'll get from it:

As a thank you for subscribing, we'll send you a copy of our 2018 Small Business Marketing Trends Report with insights from over 1,000 surveyed business owners. The gifts just keep on coming.

4 Reasons to Subscribe:
  • Weekly tips to dominate sales and marketing

  • Expert small business resources that cost you zero dollars

  • We're focused 100 percent on small business success

  • Righteous GIFs

    GIF of Ferris Bueler principal's assistant

P.S. We'll never give out your information. We'll only use it to send you awesome content and resources, if you're cool with that.