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4 Tips for Segmenting Email Contacts

Think email marketing is dead? If so, you’re obviously not taking the time to segment email marketing contacts and serve them with personalized content.
Too many businesses still take the “batch and blast” approach to email marketing. Treating your target audience as if they all have the same needs, wants, and desires is a mistake as sending a generic message will not resonate with everyone. In fact, sending too broad of a message can actually turn your email contacts off.

There seems to be a big disconnect between what people believe email segmentation is and reality. Even though most SMB owners understand the importance of segmenting email marketing contacts, few go beyond separating active and inactive contacts.

Are you ready to start earning a positive ROI on email marketing campaigns in 2018? Use the following tips and best practices for successfully segmenting your email marketing contacts:

1. Ask your email contacts to opt-in again to receive your messages.
When was the last time that you updated your email contacts? Determining which of your contacts are inactive and stale should be the first step of email segmentation and is essential to running successful campaigns.

To create an opt-in email, send an email to every person in your contact list to request that they opt-in to receive future emails from your business. Include a link to your online subscription, and only those contacts that click on the link and agree to opt-in should be the active email subscribers that you target.

Taking the time to clean up your email contacts by requesting that they opt-in to receive your emails will improve your delivery rate, reduce abuse complaints, and help you to get the most from your email marketing efforts.

2. Come up with a list of keywords to segment your email contacts.
Once you clean up your email contacts, you’re ready to come up with the parameters that you’ll use to segment them.

You’ll quickly see that the segmentation possibilities are endless, and you need to determine which keywords are most relevant to your business.

Here are some examples of keywords that you could use to segment your contacts:

  • Geographic location
  • Products purchased
  • Products browsed
  • Product category
  • Order data
  • Cart contents
  • Stage in buying process
  • Age

Your list could go on and on. The more information you have about your email contacts, the easier it will be to accurately segment them. But how do you find data to segment your contacts?

3. Optimize signup forms to distinguish motivations, interests, and intentions.
The homepage of your website needs to include a signup form to help you build your email contacts. Instead of simply asking for a name and email address, ask a brief question or two to clarify why the contact wants to receive your emails. Keep in mind that the fewer questions you ask on your signup form, the better. As a best practice, ask for this information on different offer forms that you have throughout your website.

4. Use analytics to segment based on consumer behaviors.
There are a number of analytics tools that will reveal how visitors behave on your website. This information can reveal where consumers are in your buyer journey and the types of content on your website that they like to consume. Having access to this information will allow you to segment your email contacts so that you can serve them with content that genuinely interests them.

Taking the time to segment your email contacts will help ensure that you’re getting the right message in front of the right audience. Use these tips and best practices to help you be more intentional with email marketing in 2018 and optimize results for your business.

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