Using mailing list segments to tailor your offer

There’s no question that segmenting your mailing list can increase ROI. You can use segmenting to hone in on the recipients who best match your campaign criteria. Or you can use segmenting the way major catalogs retailers do: segmenting a list and sending out tailored versions of the offer to each segment.

Segmenting a mailing list of existing customers is relatively easy because you have data about them in relationship to your products or services. You know how much they usually spend, how often they make purchases, and when their last purchase occurred.

You can also segment a brand-new list to significantly increase its effectiveness. Here are some of the criteria commonly used to segment a new business-to-consumer list for targeted mailings:

  • Income level
  • ZIP code (this information can be correlated to lifestyle information for that area)
  • Marital status
  • Gender
  • Children living in the home

Business-to-business lists can also be segmented by various criteria:

  • Business size
  • Total revenue
  • Industry served

Deciding how to segment a list for your campaign is just the first step. The next is to create and test targeted copy for your offer that leverages the information available about the prospects. Just as people pay attention when they’re addressed by their names (personalization), people take notice when an offer shows that the sender understands their interests.

Be sure to call out the customized nature of your offer prominently in headlines or email subject lines to list segments. Instead of a generic headline such as “Announcing our new 2007 cruises,” test headlines such as “2007 lineup includes three new family cruises” (households with children) and “Meet other Tri-State singles on summer weekend cruises” (singles, particular ZIP codes).

For more information on segmenting mailing lists, contact us.

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