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The Secret to Great Marketing? Segmentation

The more you can tailor your messages to speak to the different interests of each group the better, the more you need to use segmentation.

Segmentation: What it means to your business

As the price of marketing continues to trend upward, it’s important for entrepreneurs and small businesses to maximize their impact and strategically target desired clients with messaging tailored specifically for that group. It’s now harder than ever to get the response rate that promises to return the kind of results that most entrepreneurs and small business are looking for. This makes target marketing, or matching your message as closely as possible to your audience, vital to guaranteeing an increased response rate.

One method that guarantees a better response to your marketing efforts is segmentation. This method involves dividing your audience into several groups and creating different messages for each group based upon their interests, beliefs, sex, race, social status or even their place in the buying cycle. The more you can tailor your messages to speak to the different interests of each group the better. Though segmenting your market thoughtfully is a surefire way to improve your response rates, there are a few challenges to doing this successfully.

Defining Your Segments

Segmenting is only an effective strategy if your segments are definable. You must be able to easily distinguish between your segments based on observable characteristics, behavior or responses. So for example, if you conducted a survey of your email list and asked them their gender, that would be an easy objective factor to sort on. From then on you could send offers for women’s clothing to the female segment, or you could send offers for men’s razors to the male segment. Say you wanted to segment based on what point your prospects are at in the buying cycle. This would be a prime opportunity to sort based on behavior. Have they clicked a link in one of your emails? Put them in the “interested” group. Have they clicked onto your website’s sales or pricing page? Put them in the “hot” group. Each of these behaviors indicates a different level of readiness to buy, and you can develop a strategy to communicate with them at each level.

Getting Data

Once you have an idea of what factors you want to use to segment, the challenge of finding the relevant information begins. Of course, you could use a survey as suggested in the previous example, but oftentimes it can be difficult to get prospects to participate. The amount of information they’re willing to provide about themselves usually depends how much they trust you and how engaged they are with your brand. Asking for too much information too early on can be perceived as pushy. So how do you get it?

You can often buy data from collection companies, especially if it is “hard” demographic data such as age, gender, address, etc. For other “soft” data, you can often infer it from their behavior. Tracking lead source is a helpful way to sort your prospects immediately as they come to you. Depending on which advertisement they clicked on, which offer they request more information on, or which pages they visit on your website, you can infer a lot about their interests. From there, you can refine your messaging to give them better information about the types of product or content they’re interested in.

There are many different factors you can use to segment and many different ways you can infer data about your prospects to target them with narrowly focused messages. For more insight, check out ONTRAPORT’s ultimate guide to segmentation and target marketing, 5 Tactics, 1 Strategy. The free guide will teach you the secrets to increasing your response rates by segmenting like a pro.

Download your copy of 5 Tactics, 1 Strategy now to learn everything you need to know about how segmentation can increase your ROI.

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