The objective of segmenting your email list members is to increase the relevancy of your messages so that they add more value to your members - ultimately, so that they buy more from you.
When you separate your contacts by groups, you can organize communications focused on the specific interests of members, or create special campaigns to reward the most active users, or to involve those inactive.
Segmentation allows us to learn more about the recipients of our email and help us provide them with information consistent with the interest shown.
Once an email list member has become a client, it's time to move them to a different level of list where they receive emails that are designed for clients and not prospects. There is nothing that can create more cognitive dissonance than for an existing client to receive an email marketing to them as if they were a prospect offering them a better deal than they just received.
If your firm has a wide line of distinct product lines, it's best to address your prospects and clients by product line. Give this segment specific offers or content relevant to the product line they are interested in or purchased.
Many times a client that gives you a sale in the $1,000+ average ticket price is worth far more than a client that purchased products from you in the less than $100 range.
VIP clients need to be acknowledged, remembered and given better attention, gifts of exclusive information / content and some of your best deals.
If you have transactional customers who only purchase your type of product once every 3 years (for example), do you think it would be wise to segment this type of buyer so that the moment you identify their recent visit or click of a specific campaign from your site, that they would be the perfect target for increased attention and offers vs. other times in this type of customer buying cycle?
Demographics might include age, race, gender, education levels, occupation, location of residence, marital status, number of children, income or other socio-economic factors, etc.
This is not to be confused with "Psychographics" or the identification of certain characteristics that your clients have that would influence their buying decisions. These could be factors that include measuring their attitudes, interests, opinions, cultural identity, etc.
If you've done surveys over the past year, then you know certain email members have different interests that can help you classify their interest levels in various offerings related to your core product or service.
Simply stated, email list members that open your newsletter or click on something on a frequent basis are clearly more engaged than members who do not click on things... therefore, you can test sending a higher frequency to your most engaged members to increase conversion or response.
As soon as you've segmented your clients from your prospects, now its time to automate the sequence of emails that they will receive as a separate email segment based on the types of products they purchased. Your goal is to reinforce the wise decision they made by purchasing from you and help them purchase the next level of product from you.
Where your email members came from is known as an ‘acquisition channel' and different acquisition channels have different characteristics. Example: Co-registration email list members will always respond or convert differently than organically acquired email members.
Your prospects or clients in a foreign country really don't want to hear about your domestic holiday chit chat. Best to segment by the major countries you serve so that you can deliver geo-targeted messages that are more related to your members.