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VIEWN

Find strong growth targeting your most valuable customer segments

Photo by Ane Nygard on unsplash

Fully utilize valuable customer segments to enhance your business. Handpicking only the most beneficial or essential information is oftentimes the best approach than looking at aggregated data.

Say I have five pets, three parrots and two horses, and they all eat a total of 500 kilograms of vegetables per day. On average, that’s 100 kilograms per animal per day! Unless my pet bird is actually an ostrich, there is no way a regular-sized bird can stomach all that daily. Failing to properly segment your data sets you up at a disadvantage because you might be understating your brand or you might be making poor business decisions based on inaccurate aggregate numbers.

Segmentation makes it easier to streamline your marketing efforts and resources on reaching your most valuable customer segments and achieving business goals.

Examples of characteristic segments marketers use include:

  • Geographic: Location, country, language, etc.
  • Demographic: Age, gender, nationality, etc.
  • Sociographic: Marital status, children
  • Psychographic: Personality traits, values, attitudes, interests, etc.
  • Behavioral: Clicks, views, responses, keywords, journeys, usage
  • Professional: Occupation, income, education, etc.

Segmentation and Customer Data Platforms

The practice of using a Customer Data Platform (CDP) for better customer segmentation is definitely taking hold. In fact, according to a Forrester survey, 34% do expect segmentation to be a key CDP feature.

When planning out demand generation strategies, brand awareness and targeted personas are often the very first pieces. Actually, the demand generation doesn’t really work at all without customer segments. Congratulations if you’re one of the lucky ones who just hit your target audience from the start. But then, where next? And have you validated that there aren’t any other valuable personas to pursue? At VIEWN, we studied how you can see a customer building out a CDP- fueled demand generation. We find that validating target audiences from customer segmentation is one of the first and most valuable ways to unlock your customer data.

Regardless of what line of business you’re in, B2B and B2C alike, your target customers will be a diverse mix of people with different needs — and these are going to change as they move along the buying process approach and purchasing decision. This means each customer segment found to be valuable is going to need its own personalized customer journey. Now, the exact execution of customer journeys may need to change with the loss of third-party cookies.

To deliver messages to each of these prospects at the right time along the customer journey and addressing their unique needs at each stage of the sales journey, you need to segment your leads — both at the moment you capture them and on an ongoing basis as their relationship with your brand progresses.

It’s important to note here that there’s a big difference between a customer segmentation and a segmented contact list. There are many marketing tactics that segment lists with just a couple of rules to drive workflows. While these tactics may inform some behavioral segments, I am talking about defining valued customer segments from insights gained from contextualizing different attributes of your existing audience in the case of utilizing a CDP for customer segmentation.

There are a lot of different data sources to enrich your CDP for insights. And as I mentioned earlier, the old way of getting journey data with browser cookies is going away. This means even Facebook may not give you the characteristics you want either. Assuming you have the most loyal or valuable customers’ email addresses, audience information can still be tapped for segment characteristics.

You will often find that your marketing team utilizes a lot of different tools to collect these characteristic segment data. For example, many good behavioral data will come from your CRM and marketing automation platforms like SalesForce, Drip, and Mailchimp. Key psychographic, professional, and sociographic data can often be gathered directly from the prospects during the engagement process. VIEWN’s team recommends surveys and lead generation forms as an easy way to get reliable data. I don’t know how you add focus group results to a big data set yet. Your sales representatives can also be tapped as data collectors (into a CRM) with their different conversations. When the budget allows, purchasing intent data will give demographic, geographic and even some psychographic data tied to a particular contact or zip code. B2B firmographic services tied to DUNS numbers are also available to the enterprise, where industry and firm matter.

Your valuable customer segments

Segmentation is probably the most valuable byproduct of being able to build customer profiles from data. With profiles, you have a modular data organization that allows you to keep building on (adding data sources) while slicing and dicing the data until you find the “most valued customer segment.”

The most valuable customer segment is the one that brings in the most sales. These sales can be from returning customers or new customers purchasing more expensive products. As engagement can be a predictor of sales performance, your most valuable segment may also be the most active and participating.

You are given numerous and almost indefinite approaches like using media usage and location to define a segment. It’s key to remember getting to “N” does not mean just pouring things into a data lake, hoping to find a factor that impacts. Keeping in mind context and mapping things that make sense is still a prerequisite to getting a favorable outcome. Even when we use AI to cluster profiles into unique customer segments from your own data, you still need to be methodical about the characteristics you need and how to get them.

Final words

Going granular and really looking into segmentation (with a good customer data platform) can help your businesses to fully utilize your most valuable customer segment data and deliver highly targeted and relevant marketing messages.

This level of personalization will surely convert potential leads to actual customers that will go all the way and buy from you — maybe even support and advocate for your brand. I covered personalization on another blog, you can check that out here.

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Areeya Lila

Marketing AI Tech Entrepreneur and Mom of twins and a whippet. Startup advisor, D&I, AI-bias, sustainability, scuba diving & paddle boarder.