For years, marketers have been building customer profiles. Most marketers actually know their target customer quite well. You likely know the size business you're targeting, how many employees they retain, what their annual revenue is, and whether they are B2B or B2C businesses. What if you could fine tune this even further, separating your customers into segments for more fine-tuned, well-honed targeting? This could open up a world of opportunities!
What is Data Segmentation?
Data segmentation is the process of grouping your customers according to shared characteristics. Unless your target market is quite small, you'll find that your customers are not as homogeneous as you may have thought. There are several ways to segment your customers, and the 'right' way is simply the one that makes the most sense in your industry with your customer base.
For one, you can separate your customers based on their needs. Do your customers use your products to meet different goals? Perhaps one group buys to get an edge on the competition, while another group buys for convenience sake? You can define the differing needs of your customer segments once you have the right data.
Alternately, you can segment your customers based on how they are most likely to respond to a particular marketing strategy. One group might jump on the opportunity to buy on sale, no matter how long it is before their next purchase period comes. Another group might only be interested in purchasing at the regular interval, no matter how attractive you make the offer.
You can segment your customers based on demographics, psychographics, behavior, geography, or firmographics -- whichever makes the most sense in your industry with the data you have available to you.
Finding New Data Streams to Improve Segmentation
In the age of big data, it's surprising to learn how many companies still keep data in departmentalized silos, making it impossible for marketers to take advantage of the rich collection of data across departments. Smart marketers find ways to get their hands on data from sources around the organization: sales, customer service, tech support, production, accounting, and even R&D.
Don't forget to pull data streams from sources outside your data silos, as well. Set up a data collection and processing plan for your social media accounts, and use data integration to pull marketing information from old systems, previous campaigns, and other sources. All data is good data, so long as it's cleaned and prepared before being used to segment your customer base.
ReachForce helps marketers increase revenue contribution by solving some of their toughest data management problems. We understand the challenges of results-driven marketers and provide solutions to make initiatives like marketing automation, personalization and predictive marketing better. Whether you have an acute pain to solve today or prefer to grow your capabilities over time, ReachForce can unify, clean and enrich prospect and customer lifecycle data in your business, and do it at your own pace.