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BroadVision Marketing Blog

Email List Management: Why do it and How

Posted by Jaco Grobbelaar on Sun, Dec 11, 2011 @ 05:46 PM

When was the last time you thought seriously about segmenting your email lists? Tedious to even think about? But do you know how important your lists are if they are segmented?

Segmented email lists target your major source of direct communication with your clients. These lists increase the relevancy of your messages and can result in higher open and click through rates, enhance loyalty of your customers and ultimately increase sales. When it comes to email marketing,the more relevant your campaign, the better the response and the more sales you make.

What are the advantages? It you do it correctly, you can avoid opt-outs and being called a spammer. You can go a long way toward improving your email deliverability and your online reputation. Marketers sending relevant email campaigns have lower opt-out rates than those who send the exact same email to everyone on their lists.

What if your email lists are endless and you have never done this before? Here are some ways you can segment your list, but you do not have to do this all at once. Start with the information you have and work from there.

You can use any combination of the following:

    • Demographics (Zip/postal code, gender, age or occupation).You wouldn’t want to sell a person in California a piece of the Brooklyn Bridge. Or if you have someone on your list who is a 45-year-old mom, you wouldn’t send her information on infants. Pay attention to your audience. If you send relevant information to a person, you give the impression that you are listening (which you are or you should be) and this will get you results.

    • Recent Subscribers. You can define recent as from 3-6 months or since the last mailing you did last month. In any case separate out your new email clients and pay special attention to them. You don’t want to stop the courting phase too early. Try offering more deals, discounts or coupons so you give this client the feeling that you haven’t just loved them and left them. Check out Nationwide’s commercial starring Pam.

    • Prospective and Current Customers. If you don’t use any other segmentation, this is the one to make. You should be sending out different kinds of emails to prospective clients as opposed to ones you have already sold to. The distinction might be that you offer your prospects better offers than the ones the customers receive. You don’t want your customers to think they aren’t special and that potential clients are getting the best deals.

    • Behavioral Data. Open or click-through rates, last visit, or latest—this information that can help our target who is responding to your emails. You might want to send more emails to the customer who opens your emails all the time or regularly.

    • Inactive Subscribers. These people haven’t been opening or clicking on your email for awhile. Instead of writing them off, try putting them in a different group and send them a targeted reactivation set of emails.

    • Major clients. These people are the ones that spend more than a certain amount depending on what you are selling. They should always get treat like they are special. Offer them platinum status, free shipping, bonuses, gifts with their next purchase, whatever you think will make these people think that you appreciate their loyalty. That’s because you do appreciate their loyalty.

    • Preference Surveys or Interest-Based Preferences. Don’t be afraid to ask for information if you don’t have it or if you think it’s been awhile since you asked before. Be sure to ask if they have a new email address. Tell them that this information will help you send them more relevant emails and be sure to remind them that you will maintain their privacy at all costs.

    • Purchase Habits. What type of products have your customers bought, how much did they spend and fro which store if you have brick and mortar locations. You can then send an email offering a discount on certain items if they spend a certain amount at their favorite store.

After you have segmented your email lists, it is important to keep the categories up to date. Decide and schedule a regular date to review your segments—perhaps annually or bi-annually. Check to see how campaigns you used with each customer are working. If something is not working with certain people, perhaps you need to put them in a different category. However, before you put them into a different category, ask them in an email what they are interested in and watch them put themselves in the right category.

What you will see is that although the process can be boring, it is essential if you want immediate good responses from your customers.

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Topics: Social Media, Marketing Principles

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