This is a guest post from Nikole Wintermeier at Crobox.
These days, it can be difficult to analyze all the clicks and touchpoints that your customers have with your business, and it’s only normal to ask: How do I make all this data actionable?
And you’re not the only one asking this question.
How to make your data actionable
We’re all drowning in data. However, one of the ways we can pull ourselves out of this deep data pool is by leveraging data via email marketing campaigns using segmentation.
Segmentation for mature email marketing campaigns can be done in three ways:
- Product Attributes
Read on to discover actionable ways of using data that will optimize and enrich your email campaigns, provide a 360-view of your customers, and increase their trust, loyalty, and retention to boost your ROI.
What is segmentation?
Segmentation uses customer analytics to organize and categorize your customers based on their shared characteristics.
It may sound easy to scrape data in this way, yet 85% of new products launched in the US fail to generate revenue because marketers fail to segment properly.
If you’re launching a new product and attaching an email campaign to it, segmentation will increase your incremental sales.
Separating and then grouping your customers according to their commonalities will allow you to customize campaigns for those specific clusters.
So how do you get started?
1. Demographic segmentation
Demographic segmentation divides customers based on their age, income, education, race, gender, location, or employment.
The target group for this Chatbooks campaign is clearly new parents. Imagine if you sent this same email out to groups who largely are uninterested, like retirees or Gen Zers.
While you might have some interest, you’re much likelier to see success by segmenting your list and sending this message to a specific group of people.
Demographic segmentation builds brand relevance.
Segmenting across demographic divisions allows you to send tailored emails, which will make those specific groups appreciate your campaign initiatives and your products more.
In the Chatbooks example, the segment would be English-speaking men and women who recently had a child and who take advantage of discounts or promo codes. Customization of this kind will delight your customers.
Segmentation also goes hand-in-hand with localization.
Understanding your local market will help keep customers engaged. An obvious way to do this is through language:
This ad wouldn’t resonate with a non-French-speaking audience. What’s more, using celebrities or influencers that your local market will know will boost your brand’s credibility. Most international audiences know Pharell Williams (above), for example, but perhaps a French “superstar” would localize the Adidas campaign even more.
Whereas language is important for demographic localization, things like cultural nuances belong under the realm of psychographics. This is another great way to take your research and make the data actionable.
Psychographic segmentation gathers information about customer personalities, values, interests, opinions, lifestyles, etc. This kind of deep-dive can be collected digitally by tracking patterns in behavior, like what device your customers are using, their location, browsing histories, and the like.
More than anything, this form of segmentation can help you identify so-called “opportunity segments.”
For example, if Janet X is a high-profile customer (i.e., she represents a significant increase in sales and profits), then wouldn’t you want to send her more emails to keep her engaged with your products and brand?
Look at it this way:
Say Janet X is the principal of a local school and your store is her favorite supply center. Since Janet X is a frequent client who buys in bulk, targeted emails suggesting sales or benefits will encourage her to shop with you again.
Similarly, you could also use the principle of occasion-based segmentation to email new products to Janet X during occasions like back-to-school season. (By the way, back-to-school season spending will reach an all-new record-high this year. It’d be worth investing in creating campaigns and website banners to capitalize on this trend).
But, more importantly…
Dividing your customers into high-profile, gender, income, values, and so on will lead to more organized data and optimized campaigns.
How else do I make this data actionable?
As shoppers, we all make choices subconsciously. Sometimes it has to do with necessity (utilitarian) or pleasure (hedonic), but most of our choices are swayed one way or another by the subtle techniques of persuasion.
Persuasive messaging is based on Cialdini’s “Influence,” the cornerstone of every marketer’s language, and is how you can use psychographics to segment your audience.
Understanding which principle of persuasion your customers respond to the best (like authority, scarcity, social proof, etc.) can help you personalize the customer experience.
Can you give me an example?
Recently, Apple had a campaign advertising limited-time iPhone colors. The “exclusivity” and “limited edition” nature of the purchase persuaded people (including the author of this article) to buy.
With this particular advertisement style, customers respond to the psychological principle of scarcity, even subconsciously.
When something is scarce, we react in a certain way, because we believe it’s the last opportunity to buy something.
So, if you were to invest in psychological data analysis and understand consumer psychology (and scarcity inclinations), then you could tailor your email copy with things like, “before it’s too late,” “in high demand,” “only X left in stock,” or “deal ends in X amount of minutes” to influence purchasing decisions for specific customers.
Leveraging this tool in email marketing should be done honestly and authentically.
Cialdini’s “authority” is at work when, for example, you see lab-coat wearing actors on toothpaste commercials, which implies their expertise.
If you successfully manage to collect data on these psychological triggers and understand these “weapons of influence,” they can be applied in your email marketing as product tags or used to change your email copy.
For example, in this Rapha campaign, “authority” is implied with “Simon Mottram’s Picks,” boosting the credibility of the products.
Consumer psychology is important for any B2C aspirations. Understanding what principles of persuasion your audience respond to more can help you retarget them with more personalized emails.
But it all starts with data.
Using AI or machine learning can help generate data about your customer’s beliefs, analyzing which products they respond to over others. This will allow you to enrich customer profiles which will, in turn, lead to more relevant email campaigns.
3. Product attributes
Products, too, have a myriad of data points, and understanding these can make the shopping experience more frictionless for your customers and increase conversion rates.
What product data you should track for email marketing campaigns:
- Product-cart abandonment (why one product will be checked out, where another will be abandoned), this will inform your retargeting campaigns to get people to come back and convert.
- Product tags (dynamic, static) to profile your customers better and optimize the product attributes.
- How easy it is to find a product (search functionality).
- The channels where people are coming from to look for that product (including what keyword searches have brought them here).
- Product review scores (promote bestsellers via email but also see which customers will come back for which products and why).
These are only a few of the way ways product data can provide actionable insights for email marketing.
Can you give me an example?
Ben often browses online for organic farming techniques. Recently, he bought a solar panel from Amazon and also redid his kitchen using recycled DIY furniture—tips he found on the internet.
Your brand has an end-of-summer sale and you want to send email campaigns to your customers letting them know (including Ben).
Analyzing the groups of people that respond in a similar way to Ben means that you can create email campaigns with product suggestions with the tags, “sustainability,” “fair trade,” or “eco-friendly” on them, change your copy to green-oriented messaging or emphasize the DIY nature of your products.
This email campaign by Yuppiechef is a good example of something Ben and his segment might appreciate:
[Source: Milled, yuppiechef email]
The segment here is people who can afford kitchen remodeling, yet are environmentally conscious and like multi-functional DIY products.
Analyzing product attributes in real-time will enable dynamic campaigns.
This means you can respond to Ben’s kitchen remodeling in one email and his solar panel interests in the next, highlighting different product features across different emails.
Using “sustainable” product tags for customers like our example, Ben, will increase your ROI and let him know that you’re thinking about him, using his data to help him shop better, for products that he actually likes.
How else do I make this actionable?
First, invest in a proven product feed management system that’ll help streamline this process.
Second, use data experts to analyze the data and decide which product features should be elevated for which customers.
Lastly, product attributes can help make email campaigns helpful for your utilitarian shoppers, and delightful for the hedonic ones.
Segmentation can be achieved in three different ways, and this is how to capitalize on your metrics and make your data actionable:
- Demographics: the “hard facts” of your customer data like location, language, gender.
- Psychographics: the psychology of your customers segmented according to their responses to Cialdini’s persuasion tactics.
- Product attributes can be elevated and emphasized via email campaigns to help shoppers understand your products better and relate to your brand.
Nikole Wintermeier is a Content Copywriter at tech company Crobox in Amsterdam. She invests in beers, basketball, and books, and she’s also a big fan of psychology and alliteration.