Email segmentation and targeting options

Segmentation and targeting for email marketing is aimed at boosting response by sending more customized messages and offers to specific groups rather than sending the same message to everyone on the list.

Six email targeting options to consider are:

  • 1. Customer profile characteristics: Demographics, geographics and customer set preferences.
  • 2. Customer lifecycle groups: Most commonly grouped in categories like new subscribers or prospects, active customers and lapsed or no longer engaging in email.
  • 3. Customer behaviour in response and purchase (observed and predicted): This is the most powerful method, but it requires effort to customize technology through automation to deliver it.
  • 4. Customer multi-channel behaviour: Targeting based on channel preference.
  • 5. Customer value: The value a recipient represents at this moment and future expected value.
  • 6. Customer personas: Personas provide a helpful way to target based on multiple dimensions.

Using a layered targeting strategy

To set your targeting strategy consider which elements you will combine. Many start with demographics, but then add in behavioural interest in product or content and then value.

For example, eBay shared this method of summarizing their targeting approach at a conference.

About Smart Insights

Dr Dave Chaffey is co-founder and Content Director of digital marketing advice site Smart Insights. We’re a publisher and learning platform that helps our 150,000 active members in over 100 countries plan, manage and optimize their digital marketing activities by applying the actionable advice in our planning templates, guides and interactive e-learning tools.

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