I’m sure by now many of you should know or should have at least heard the word “segment”. But what does it actually mean in the terms of social media marketing? And why is it so important, even vital in deciding before you begin any campaign? Let’s dive in shall we!
Okay, so what is it?
Quite simply we can describe segmentation as the way a company or business breaks down the population in a given area or multiple area’s into groups that have common needs and interests. Going a step further these segments can be broken into demographics such as age, gender, marital status. Geographic location is another factor that plays into social norms, major religions, and typical behaviour and hobbies of people that live within a specific area.
Behaviours and interests are also very important in segmenting. Behaviours are things such as people who prefer high value goods, frequent travellers, and preferred mobile devices people like to use. Interests are things such as preferred modes of entertainment, hobbies, fashion, sports, and many more.
It is important to decide on all these factors especially if you’re selling to a niche market. The more specific you are and knowing what kinds of things your key segments are interested in will help social media sites ensure your ads only show up in relevant locations specific to your segment’s lifestyle and search habits.
Why is it Important?
So what does all this mean and put together how does it help you? Well depending on what services or goods you provide you will want to do your homework and learn specifically what types of people usually buy what you’re offering or would be interested in your offerings. Doing this you can properly design and implement strategies specific for your intended target market and will maximise your exposure and ultimately your sales. A campaign with no focus will only confuse consumers and clients and will be ineffective, which in turn may leave you vulnerable to other businesses taking advantage of your misstep.
As an example, imagine you ran a women’s sports and apparel boutique. Your business, its focus is on young working female professionals aged between 20 and 34. They typically enjoy shopping in malls on weekends, spend time on Instagram between 12 and 1 and 6 to 9, and enjoy going to the gym every afternoon after work to burn off some steam.
Knowing all this information about your segment you know that your ads will have a higher reach during 12 and 1 and 6 to 9 in Instagram. You also know they like to stay healthy and visit the mall on a weekly basis. Taking all this into consideration you can shape your ad text specifically such as “Hey Ladies! Burn more and sweat less when you wear leggings from (business name).” Then add an appropriate visual reinforcing that statement. This is why it’s vital you know your segment inside and out, because knowing them you can design ads addressed specifically to them and their lifestyle.
Respectively, most men would not be interested in any product offerings from a women’s store unless of course they’re looking to buy a gift for someone they know. If you just “posted” your business offerings on Facebook or Instagram you’re going to get a mix of men, women, kids, and other viewers who are unrelated to your product offerings. Simply putting a picture of a Nike tank top with the ad copy saying, “Check out our sports apparel!” is very vague and in the broader sense “sports” is almost always associated with the male demographic.
Being specific about what you’re offering and who it’s for is key. Consumers love seeing the product in use as it acts as a quick visual aid to summarise the product function. Tack that with an amazing ad line and you’re well on your way.
When it comes to email segmenting you need to first consider that a one-size-fits-all approach will not work. Segmenting your emails towards varying groups with similar profiles will help ensure your sending content relevant to them. You want to retain and attract email list prospects, not drive them away.
To start, you will want to ensure the proper headlines and body content are relevant to your segments needs and interests. This will get you more click-through rates and conversions.
By segmenting the recipients of your emails will feel appreciated and their needs realised. Leading to a stronger relationship between both yourself and the receiver.
Some strategies you should employ when segmenting email lists include the following:
- As the foundation, you should know your segment’s demographic data. Age, gender, life stage, and income are some factors to consider. This will make sure your emails are appropriate and geared towards the segment’s ability to find value in the email.
- Next, you’ll look into your segments psychographics. This is important because it describes segment behaviour. Achieving this you will be able to better highlight product or service features in your emails you know will drive receiver engagement. Interests, lifestyle, and values are common to look for and know.
- A third factor is contact behaviour. This is different from what was described above as this is more specific towards knowing the actions and inactions that your segments have with your business after interacting with the emails you sent. This will give you insight as to what you should be focusing your emails on based on these interactions. Factors such as purchase history, website interactions, and use of your product or service would be revealed.
- Finally, geographic factors. You will want to make sure your emails are sent to relevant locations your segments live in. Also, if your segments are in other time zones you will want to make sure they are receiving your emails with their most active.
So, we’ve discussed what segmentation is, why it’s important, gave a fun example, and dove into email segmenting. Now it’s time for you to put what you’ve just learned to use! We realise that one of the most difficult mediums to reach key segments would be through email marketing. Just over half of emails are ignored, 65% to be exact according to Forbes! What’s the point then and how do you change this? We may have a solution for you!
Having scanned through quite a few programs and services, we highly suggest that you take ActiveCampaign for a spin as it’s a program we enjoy using ourselves for email marketing.
What does ActiveCampaign have to offer? To start, it offers four varying plan tiers all of which come with accelerated onboarding, contact migration, customer enabled workshops, video tutorials, chat and ticket support, and knowledge base and help guides to assist all service users.
Focusing on their most popular plan, “Professional” you will find it comes with many great benefits that will take your emails to the next level which we will discuss next.
Predictive sending, this feature uses artificial intelligence learning to analyse open rate data and tell you the ideal times you should be sending future emails. Which will ensure your segments receive and see your emails during their active times.
Another great feature is the service’s attribution reporting ability. This allows you to see the direct impact that your email marketing campaign, tactic, strategy, or content piece had on a specific goal you set such as sales or reach. With this you can learn what attracts your segments and adjust future emails that are more relevant to them.
Conversion tracking, this will tell you the specific actions your email receivers took after receiving and opening the email. This will help you decide on what calls to action, links, photo content, and buttons you should employ to ensure repeat actions.
One other fun feature to mention is split automations. A split automations campaign is a form of A/B testing where you can test multiple versions of one email to see which works the best for your segments. This will save you time, money, and ensure that you get the best possible results when you initiate your next mass email.
While there are many more great features to discuss, these were the most relevant based on what we’ve covered thus far. We implore you though to take a look for yourself and explore all the possibilities ActiveCampaign has to offer you and your business!
Segmentation is Vital
Segmentation is the building block, the foundation of every campaign. A successful campaign revolves around knowing your segments, learning their needs and turning them into wants with your business offerings. Truly understanding the underlying reasons of why consumers buy and what drives them to specific brands will give you a competitive advantage. The more you know, the easier it will be to design social media campaigns geared to consumers that will find value in your product or service. Now get out there and start segmenting!