Segmenting your audience list

How to differentiate your email audience based upon the customer life cycle

If you have more than one, you're off to a good start, but don't stop there. Dividing your audience into unique segments allows you to send targeted, relevant messages to those groups. You can find plenty of examples of segmentation helping conversion rates, but it's also just logical — if you only send messages that are likely to interest each group of recipients, you'll do better as a marketer.

How, though, do you define what is "likely to interest" any particular customer or group of customers? Dividing your audience among demographic lines is one way to do it, but a certain age, gender or location can still return quite an array of people — and some of those people aren't going to connect with your messaging.

Where do your email recipients fit into the customer life cycle?

A brand new customer has different needs than a long-standing customer; a prospect who's just collecting information has an entirely different set of needs. When you present subscribers with information that meets them where they are in the customer life cycle, it reduces the "noise" they have to wade through and makes it easier for them to purchase. That, in turn, improves your bottom line.

Econsultancy describes the five stages of the email life cycle and then dives into the specifics of each. Prospect, welcome, single buyer, multi-buyer and dormant are all categories that your recipients may fall into, and you may have others, depending upon your business. Are you initiating your new customers and reactivating your old ones, without confusing overlap?

search and segment
Use our search and segment feature to target your list.

Keep in mind that your list can turn over as much as one-third every year, so growing your list and activating the new members should be a priority. That means welcoming these folks more intentionally than just adding them to your usual stream of sends.

Take a look at the five major email life cycle stages, and think through how you can use email to reach them. Triggers are a good way to welcome new subscribers, and our search and segment feature can help you find those dormant readers. (If you're an Emma agency, share this trigger documentation and this search and segment documentation with your clients.*)

For a bit more reading on this topic, tactics for effective B2B email segmentation can provide additional details on how to properly classify your readers. Tell us how it goes, and let us know if we can help along the way.

* Are you an Emma agency? Share the links from our Agency Help Guide with your clients to support their email marketing efforts. This Help Guide is geared toward accounts within the agency structure, which have their own unique settings and offerings.

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Emma at a Glance

Not a customer yet? Interested in seeing more about the features Emma offers? Take a look at Emma at a Glance — it's a meeting-ready PDF that highlights Emma's email marketing features and pricing.