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segmentation

Audience Management: Four Traps to Watch Out For

“Thirty percent off is meaningless to someone who doesn’t know the regular price,” says Yale. If they know the regular price, the sale messages should outperform messages sent to people who never received messages touting the regular price.

Last week, Alexandre Yale, head of analytics for Alchemy Worx shared a view of the approach we take towards segmentation. We call it Audience Management. This week, we asked Yale to share some of the traps marketers need to watch out for when they are applying segmentation.

Trap 1: Missing Low-Performing Segments

Yale explains, “In contrast to audience management, the campaign-by-campaign approach to segmenting can easily get out of hand.”

True story: A well-known b2b marketer with multiple product lines had different email managers for each. When marketing their products, each product manager would naturally pull the best customers from the company email file. The top 10 percent of the company file eventually received 100 emails per month and began to complain while the other 90 percent received no messaging.

By failing to send messages to lower performing segments, the sender is ensuring an inability to move them into the higher-performing segments. With no messaging, it’s impossible to know what the bottom segments will respond to.

Trap 2: Removing Unengaged Addresses

Also, Yale counsels never “sunsetting” or removing unengaged addresses.

“If they opted in, they asked to receive messages,” he says. The trick is sending them messages at a lower cadence than the higher-performing segments and tweaking the messaging sent to them to see what they’ll respond to.

Behavior is the most valuable tool in segmentation, but in order to use it, the sender must give everyone a chance to respond.

Trap 3: Taking Too Short a View

Then the goal is to turn openers into clickers, clickers into buyers and buyers into multi-buyers.

It’s important to think in terms of the long game. Not every message should be aimed at an immediate sale.

Consider the following scenario: a b2c marketer planning a big Black Friday sale. Simply cranking open the spigots on Black Friday to the entire file is a recipe for trouble.

Instead, to drive the most revenue on Back-Friday weekend, that sender should be priming the pump weeks in advance, getting high-performing segments used to getting more messaging and lower-performing segments used to getting regular messaging.

Trap 4: Forgetting to Share Information

Also, if the merchant plans on using discounts to drive revenue on Black Friday, it would be wise to send promotions offering the same items at regular pricing in the weeks leading up to Black Friday, says Yale. This way, recipients of the Black Friday promotions will know how much they’re saving.

“Thirty percent off is meaningless to someone who doesn’t know the regular price,” says Yale. If they know the regular price, the sale messages should outperform messages sent to people who never received massages touting the regular price.

Bottom line: audience management is about far more than individual campaigns. It’s about formulating an overview of the entire program and messaging everyone accordingly. If you need help managing your audience, reach out to us for more information about audience management. 

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