Think about the last time you received an email that wasn’t relevant to you. Chances are, you didn’t read it.
In fact, you may have even unsubscribed from the email list because of the irrelevant content. That’s why email marketing segmentation is so important.
When you send content that is relevant to your subscribers, they are more likely to engage with it.
In this blog post, we will discuss 18 email marketing segmentation ideas for greater engagement!
That means if you are not practicing this, you are missing out on the full potential of email marketing campaigns.
So let’s get started!
Email Marterketing Segmentation
- Email segmentation is the process of dividing your email list into smaller groups, or segments, in order to send more personalized content and improve the subscriber experience.
- There are several benefits of email segmentation, including improved open and click-through rates, increased sales, reduced unsubscribe rates, and more effective engagement with subscribers.
- Some best practices for email segmentation include choosing the right tools, using lead magnets, having multiple opt-in forms, and keeping it simple.
- There are a few steps you can take to segment your list effectively: determine criteria for qualifying for a particular segment; collect subscriber data; create segments based on that data.
- There are many different ways you can segment your list (18 ideas are listed). One example is creating a segment based on website behavior – tracking interactions such as buttons clicked
What is email segmentation?
Well, it is placing your subscribers into smaller groups – segments – and sending more personalized content to improve their experience.
You can’t send non-segmented campaigns to all your subscribers and expect a higher open and click-through rate than someone with a segmented list.
It might take time to get an engaged audience through the smaller segments, but it’s worth it if you want to boost trust, bring in more customers, and improve customer lifetime value.
Why is email segmentation important?
It is a fact that you can make money from email marketing. However, you will need to segment your list to build relationships and target the right email subscribers with the right message.
This is why that is important;
Improve open and click-through rate
Segmentation brings forth personalization. It’s about creating email campaigns that talk to a specific segment of subscribers with a particular challenge.
If the email is targeting the pain points of subscribers, most will find a reason to open, read it, and click the call to action button.
Connect with your subscribers much more effectively
Segmentation helps you tailor your marketing message to a specific interest. If it’s an age segment, you can target that cohort’s language, emotions, and overall way of thinking.
As a result of that personalization, your subscribers can connect with you at a personal level and hence develop trust with you and the services you offer.
Identify active subscribers and re-engage the dormant ones
Segmentation can help you identify inactive subscribers and weed them out of your list. You can also re-engage with dormant subscribers by sending an email targeted primarily to them.
Just send an email asking them if there is a problem since they haven’t been opening your emails for a long time. Sometimes, it could be that their interest has changed. As a result, you can opt to send them emails related to the changed interest.
Reduce unsubscribe rates
If subscribers are getting value from your emails, they can’t find a reason to click the ‘unsubscribe’ button.
But if you send generalized emails, most of them will opt out because they can’t all be interested in one thing. Segmentation allows you to target subscribers based on interest hence reducing unsubscribe rates.
The overall result of email segmentation is to increase sales. The trick is finding a particular segment, such as new subscribers, and sending them a personalized offer that solves a particular problem.
If you know the pain point of a subscriber and work towards giving them a solution, most of them will purchase it.
Best Practices for segmenting email marketing lists
Now that you have mastered the importance of email marketing segmentation, what are the best practices to achieve the end goal of improving sales and growing your business?
Choose the right tools
What I mean here is the email marketing platform with segmentation capabilities. There are some of them, but a few will allow you to have deeper levels of segmentation.
You can choose between GetResponse, ActiveCampaign, MailChimp, and others. I would advise you to go with GetResponse since I have used it over the years to segment and grow my email list.
Use lead magnets
Have more than one lead magnet to capture different interests and segments of subscribers. If you have one lead magnet, you may never have more than one segment. You can even have one lead magnet per each high-ranking blog post in different niches.
Have several opt-in forms
In addition to having several lead magnets, you should also have more than one signup form. Website forms should automatically add contact data to a particular list. This practice can help you segment your list easily and have tailored emails with more personalized content.
Keep it simple
As much as you might want to gather detailed information, don’t ask one-time customers too much before they opt-in because sometimes the requirements scare off potential subscribers.
A name and email are all that you need for a start. If you think about it, they will most often give out their name, expecting information to help them solve a particular problem. If they are downloading an e-book, that e-book could say a lot about that particular segment.
How do I segment my email list?
Want to segment your list to increase open and click-through rates? Well, there are a few steps you can take;
Determine criteria to qualify for a segment
What qualifies a new subscriber for a particular segment? You will need to know this before creating an email list segment. It could be they downloaded a particular lead magnet, made a purchase, clicked on a link but didn’t purchase, or they haven’t been actively engaging with your emails.
Collect subscriber’s data
The easiest way to collect data is to have a simple opt-in form on your website or landing page. Online stores collect data based on purchases and products purchased.
However, since you might not get enough data during signing up, you should employ an email service provider like GetResponse to track customer behavior and automatically place them on a segment.
Once you have customer data, you just need to create segments based on your data. For new subscribers, ensure they receive emails different from regular subscribers. And if there is a purchase, place the customer in a new segment.
Actually, most of this is merely assigning a tag to a subscriber who performs a particular action on your sites, such as a click or purchase.
18 Email segmentation ideas
There are several email segmentation ideas that seasoned marketers use to increase leads, undertake marketing automation, and run a profitable marketing campaign to grow their online businesses.
Read some of these and apply them to your email marketing efforts;
1. Website behavior
The first segment you can create is one based on website behavioral data. By leveraging tools such as BeamPulse, you can track any website visitors’ interaction with your website, such as buttons clicked, page visited, time spent on a page, scrolling behavior, and menus clicked.
You should get more returns if you can segment these web visitors based on their behavior. For example, if someone clicks on a product page and spends considerable time on it, it might mean they are interested in the product.
If you have an opt-in form targeting that particular segment, you can create a list and send emails related to that product or another alternative.
2. Abandoned shopping cart
This is a huge problem in the e-commerce space. From an in-depth Kibo 2022 report, about 77.5% of online shoppers fail to complete their purchases.
That’s a huge number right there. If you do your math, only two out of ten online shoppers complete their purchase. 80% of these shoppers were using mobile devices to shop online.
How can you reduce this number?
Well, you will first need to understand why they opt not to complete the purchase. And from research, 48% of the shoppers attributed the hidden costs to abandoning their carts.
That means you will need to segment these customers and work on getting them back to purchase your offer.
Check out this email from a clothing store;
After sending them the first email and failing to get a purchase, the second email should have a discount to lure them. The abandoned cart email sequence should have about three emails sending the shopper back to your website. You can even opt to downsell them.
3. Geographical Area
If you are hosting a local physical event, don’t send an email to subscribers in far-off places because that won’t help them. Undertake geographic email segmentation.
You need a segment of subscribers who are more likely to attend it and send them reminder emails regularly. It would be much better if it’s a place they know and have already been since it would be more personalized.
4. Mobile and desktop subscribers
People are now using their mobile devices more to shop and transact online. Gone are the days when someone had to be on their home computer to make a purchase.
And as such happens, you as a marketer should segment subscribers based on their devices. Your email format and readability matter a lot when it comes to the click-through rate.
I know you are using your desktop computer to write emails. However, don’t forget that most of your subscribers are using mobile.
In fact, from research, 61% of the emails were opened on mobile in 2019. That means the figures are more now since the mobile trend is growing.
5. New subscribers
You can also segment subscribers based on when they opted in. Don’t send general emails to all your subscribers because they are not at the same level in the customer journey.
A new subscriber segment will often do well with a welcome email and a few other sequences. But if you send a product promotional email even before they know your company and how it can help them, you might get a few returns for your efforts.
Below is a screenshot of welcoming new subscribers:
It is personalized (it has a name) and segmented to a new subscriber. People like that kind of welcome email because they feel right at home and expect great results from the company.
6. Purchase history
How many products did the subscriber purchase in the past? The purchase history is critical in determining the type of email to send them.
For example, if a subscriber has never purchased from you, a discount or coupon code could lure them into making the first order. Once they engage with your products and find value, making the second purchase becomes easy.
It is easy to sell a product of any price to a regular customer. So, it is important to segment your subscribers based on their purchase history.
7. Type of product purchased
For an e-commerce store, past purchases could mean they may be interested in an alternative product in the same niche.
If you segment subscribers based on their past purchases and send them an email of closely related products, they might also be interested and purchase it.
For example, someone who purchased a Tattoo Numbing Cream in the past would most likely purchase an Aftercare cream to take care of his new tattoo.
8. Satisfaction level
After making a sale, you should always get feedback from the customer on how they feel about your product or service; that will allow you to segment and retarget them with more personalized offers.
Most brands send a simple survey to access the customer’s satisfaction level. They can ask the customer to rate the product on a scale of 1 to 10 based on usability, problem-solving, and other factors.
You can also ask the customers to review products after purchasing. If you have ever bought on Alibaba or Amazon, then you know that they send out emails to gauge your level of satisfaction.
Here is an example of such emails:
9. Special days
Segmenting subscribers based on their special days is essential for your email marketing success. People tend to shop a lot on important days of their lives.
That means if you can segment and create an email targeting a particular segment, you might get an increase in leads and sales.
Here are some important days to consider:
For example, we all get birthday gifts. As an email marketer, why not use that moment to give the subscriber a birthday gift, too?
You can choose to give them partial access to your membership site, freemium, or even a discount to purchase your products.
Happy New Year’s eve
We all shop on New Year’s eve. Research shows that 41% of Americans consider New Year’s Eve their favorite holiday. The same research shows that people consume about 360 million bottles of wine on that day.
That means it is a great email segmentation idea to try out. You can send an email like this with a discount and an expiring day;
The expiry day limits people to a specific segment – a day when they are likely to spend a lot. Choose to send it a day before to ensure subscribers know about it. You can even have a week of purely promoting the product.
It is yet another email marketing segmentation idea to grow your business. Don’t send general emails on that day—target subscribers who tend to purchase more on either black Friday or Cyber Monday.
Here is a sample screenshot:
It is giving subscribers a whopping 80% on their courses. Most of them will take it since they are in the shopping mood.
Based on research from Adobe, a graphic design, and editing tool, 2020 black Friday contributed to about $188 billion in revenue.
And guess what?
Most of these sales were online-based, with Amazon taking the lion’s share of the revenue.
There are other special days, such as those alienating different religious groups worldwide. You could easily get all these data, but most might not like discussing their religious views. However, it is a great segmentation technique if you can achieve it.
10. Based on lead magnet type
Segmentation based on lead magnets can also work great with subscribers. It would work best for bloggers with more than one lead magnet covering several niches.
Most email marketing tools allow you to create a list based specifically on your lead magnet. That means it is an easy segment to create since it doesn’t need a lot of testing.
In addition, if they opted for a training video, opt to send them to your YouTube channel to learn a skill practically rather than your blog.
You see, we all prefer to learn a new skill differently. Some like to read an e-book, others like to watch a video, while others like to listen. That means you can segment your subscribers based on these with a unique lead magnet.
This is a segmentation technique, which sometimes might be overlooked. However, it is essential and acts as a great technique to improve customer engagement and create more targeted campaigns because you can’t send an offer to inactive users.
For example, when signing up to Quora, they will ask you to select the topics you are interested in. They usually send you a roundup of emails based on what they think you might like.
As a result, they will drive you back to their site to ask questions, answer them, and engage with other members.
Udemy does the same. Most of the time, they match the type of courses you search on their platform with what they email you.
For example, if you had previously searched for a course related to mastering Quickbooks, they will know that’s what you are interested in and send a roundup of courses related to that.
You can choose to segment subscribers based on their preferences. Subscribers may not like all your emails. But if you give them an option to select the types of emails to receive, you can segment and send them the right type of emails.
Most companies have this option. For example, Canva, graphic design software, does just that.
NInstead of only sending someone to the unsubscribe button, you can ask them to update their preferences. Sometimes, the interest of your subscribers can change. As a result, asking them to update their preferences can make them re-engage with your content.
Most e-commerce stores employ this marketing strategy. But others don’t have the essential ‘update your preferences’ button.
This is yet another essential segmentation idea, which is sometimes overlooked. The thing is, women have different shopping behavior than men.
Here is another catch; from research, men spend more on non-essential goods than women by up to 20%. In addition, 58% of men are willing to spend more money for faster shipping of a product and prefer retailers with flexible payment options.
You can’t ignore this segmentation technique when undertaking email marketing with any of the email segmentation tools, especially if you have an e-commerce store geared to both genders.
14. Amount of income
Your subscribers have varying income levels. That means they can’t all have the same purchasing power and should be segmented.
If someone is making $10k a month, purchasing a course worth $200 on Udemy won’t be a challenge to him. But that would be a challenge for someone making about $2000 a month.
If you learn to segment subscribers based on their income, you can know exactly the type of products or offers each segment will be willing and able to purchase.
Age is a unique segmentation technique since someone at 50 years has different purchase behavior from someone in his early twenties.
Think about it – the subscriber at 50 will most likely want information related to investment and family care, while the other at 20 might want content related to purchasing trendy products.
These people are never the same regarding their perception of information and purchase behavior. So, it would help if you could segment your email list and send targeted emails to them rather than generalize.
16. Skill level
A subscriber’s skill level matters regarding the emails you send him: this is especially important in technical niches such as programming courses.
You don’t just start from the top, do you? Well, you should segment subscribers based on their skill level and send related emails for more conversions.
Have a sequence of emails that begin from the basic skills to the most sophisticated ones. Let every new subscriber go through the sequence.
17. Position in Sales Funnel
If you think about it, every new lead goes through some stages before converting to a customer. It’s the sales funnel stages of awareness, interest, decision, and action.
A new lead will always be in the awareness stage before developing interest and ultimately deciding which action to take.
To achieve significant results from your content marketing efforts, learn to segment your subscribers based on where they are in the journey to become your customer.
18. Based on the job title
Do you know the job title of your subscriber? Well, if you know, put him in a segment and send emails customized for that particular segment.
A CEO of a company requires information different from an entry-level employee. Similarly, emails sent to a bank manager should differ from those sent to a cashier. These people have different unique ways of thinking and analyzing information.
Each job title has its pain points. You should get better open and click-through rates if you can segment them based on this.
Topics & Questions
Here are a few more answers related to email marketing segmentation;
Email segmentation is one of the most effective ways to improve your email marketing results.
By dividing your list into smaller groups and sending more personalized content, you can increase open and click-through rates, boost sales, reduce unsubscribe rates, and engage subscribers more effectively.
There are many different ways to segment your list, so it’s important to determine the criteria for qualifying for each segment and collect subscriber data so you can create segments based on that information.
If you’re not already using email autoresponders, now is a good time to start. GetResponse offers a wide range of features that make email segmentation easy and effective.
So what are you waiting for?