Audience Segmentation


Audience segmentation is a marketing strategy used to divide a target audience into smaller subcategories that make it easier to target consumers with specific attributes. These categories can include geography, demographics, behavioral, and much more. Audience segmentation powers personalization, and can drive higher conversions and loyalty.

One of the most effective ways to engage and convert your leads is to deliver hyper-personalized messaging. With so many customers and data points, grouping your customers by similar traits or stages in their journey with your brand is an extremely effective way to deliver unique, personalized messaging. There’s a reason this is an integral part of any sizable B2C brand’s marketing strategy. Let’s dive in a bit deeper.

What is Audience Segmentation?

Audience segmentation is a marketing strategy used to divide a target audience into smaller subcategories that make it easier to target consumers with specific attributes. These categories can include geography, demographics, behavior, age, whether they’ve purchased X, haven’t purchased in over 3 months, and much more. Audience segmentation powers unmatched personalization and drives higher conversions and brand loyalty.

At its most basic, we would typically only message those who report male when announcing a sale on a men’s shoe. 

Now, you may be wondering where this data comes from. How do we know one of our customers is a 34-year-old married female living in Atlanta who also loves gardening and works at Microsoft? Brands do an excellent job of acquiring this information from previous purchases, cookies that track web behavior, surveys, and social media, and combining this into a clearer picture of who you are and what you’re interested in. Multiply this process across hundreds of thousands to millions of customers per brand, and we can accurately group these customers by any number of data points. The potential for testing and squeezing out results over time is truly limitless.

Why is Audience Segmentation Important?

Audience segmentation is an important part of your marketing efforts because it lets you personalize and better connect with your audience. When you try to appeal to too many people at once, you dilute the message, creating an easily forgettable experience. Think about it, when you receive an email from a company that’s too bland, it goes right into the spam folder. When an email addresses you by name, highlights products you’d actually want to purchase, and tells you you’re 50 loyalty points away from a free item, you’re much more likely to take action. By segmenting your audience, you can create unlimited narratives that resonate with each customer based on who they are and what they enjoy…

A common tactic is to create a series of templates with variables that change based on your preferences. These variables can be the receiver’s name, the products shown in the message (based on previous purchases or product views), or even what device or channel the message comes through!

The primary benefits of audience segmentation include:

  • Better define your audience by common data points
  • Craft unique, personalized, and powerful messaging that connects with your audience
  • Establish authentic relationships
  • Increase sales and expand growth opportunities
  • Run valuable A/B tests to improve marketing campaigns

Common Segment Types & Examples

  1. Demographics: This refers to data such as age, income, gender, and location. It’s one of the easiest types of segmentation to start off with.
  2. Behavior: This segmentation takes into account patterns such as purchases, abandoned carts, or frequency of purchases.
  3. Interests: Segmenting your audience by interest is a great way to personalize emails and ads. You can find this information based on social media behavior and other analytics available through ad campaigns.
  4. Engagement: Different levels of engagement include email open and click-through rates, downloads, bounce rates, and content engagement. You can alter tone and delivery depending on how much they engage with your company’s previous content.
  5. Stage of buyer’s journey: Different audience members are at different points of the sales funnel. These stages include awareness, consideration, and decision. Depending on how warm or cool the lead is, you would send different information depending on the type of information they’re looking for.
  6. Preferred Channel/Device: How likely is user X to respond to a message on mobile vs email? Push vs text? Weigh individual preferences to optimize open rates and purchases.

Segmentation Best Practices

  1. Set Goals: Clearly defining the goals for your audience segmentation efforts is crucial for ensuring that you can achieve measurable results.
  2. A/B Test for Success: A/B testing different segments and messaging strategies is an effective way to determine which approach is most effective for your audience.
  3. Always Iterate on your Segments: Audience segments and their characteristics can change over time, so it’s important to regularly evaluate and update your segments to ensure they remain relevant.
  4. Resist Narrowing Groups Too Far: While it may be tempting to create very specific segments, it’s important to resist the urge to narrow your groups too far. This can lead to small, non-representative segments that are difficult to target effectively.
  5. Use Different Channels: Using multiple channels to reach your audience segments allows you to reach them where they are most active and engage them in a way that is most relevant to them.

How to Properly Segment Your Customer Base

We empower audience segmentation for enterprise B2C brands with the largest messaging needs. We know a thing or two about audience segmentation and would love to chat through any problems you may be having, especially when it comes to your technology.

Learn more about how MessageGears enables powerful audience segmentation through our unique technology that empowers you to use all of your customer data in a meaningful way.