The possibilities are endless when it comes to segmentation. Yet, with so much information at your fingertips, it can be difficult to know where to start. We’d like to help you tailor your communication strategy better. Here’s some segments you can start with:
- VIPs: Your best customers
- Engaged: The segment you should be sending your communications to
- Unengaged: People who haven't interacted with your e-shop in a while - you should clean them from your account
- Churn Risk Customers: Customers who are about to leave but that you want to re-engage
Your VIP customers are those who make recent and frequent purchases. Most likely, they also spend a lot of money with your brand.
How does one define recent and frequent, though?
It depends on your business and your buying cycle. For example, you define a frequent buyer for a mattress company differently from one for a cosmetics brand.
That said, there are a few rules of thumb you can use:
Recent: Within the last 4 months.
Not recent: 4 - 13 months ago
Frequent: 3 times or more (repeat purchasers)
High Monetary Value: over the average order value for your customer base
The key to communicating successfully with your VIP customers is to treat them differently and make them feel special. Because VIPs are you best customers, you want to foster this loyalty and keep them coming back. Setting up a rewards program or other VIP-specific perks is a great way to accomplish this, as well as encourage non-VIPs to aspire to VIP status.
Here’s a list of perks you can share with your VIPs:
- Product sneak peeks or early sale accessGive VIPs early access to purchase new products, or give them early access to products that are about to go on sale before you promote it to your general audience.
- Run exclusive sales for VIPsOffer VIPs a special or higher discount during sale periods to thank them for their loyalty.
- Create a rewards/points systemEncourage customers to reach certain milestones by claiming rewards through purchasing.
- Offer free shipping only to your VIPsThis encourages customers to reach VIP status and rewards those who love your brand.
Additionally, you can leverage your VIP audience by:
- Encouraging them to spread the love on social mediaIf someone is a VIP, they often engage with your brand and are loyal to you. Suggest tagging you on platforms like Twitter and Instagram to build social proof.
- Encouraging them to refer you to a friendReferral programs are a great way to gain new repeat customers who look like your best customers.
The Engaged Master List
An engaged master list is a segmented version of the main list used to collect email signups. New addresses are fed into your newsletter list through forms or other subscription methods. However, since these lists are static, they can become outdated as old email addresses begin to accumulate.
The solution? Build a segmented version of your master list that only includes people who have recently shown interest in your brand.
This way, you ensure emails are delivered to the right people and avoid being trashed in spam folders.
Use your engaged master list instead of the entire master list to send them relevant communications, such as:
- Weekly newsletters
- New product releases
- Sale notifications
- Event invitations
- Blog updates
How often you send to your engaged master list depends on your open rates and the engagement criteria you specify. To maintain good email deliverability, monitor the open rates and make sure they don't fall below 10%. The more frequently you send, the tighter your engagement criteria should be.
For example, if you're a daily sender, your engaged master list should include people who were added to your list in the last 30 days and have opened or clicked an email in this time frame. If you send communications on a weekly basis, you can extend this number to 60 days, and so on.
Unengaged subscribers are people who do not fall into your engaged master list. They aren’t engaging with your emails and are lowering your open rates. Since there is no interest in your brand, you should isolate this group and stop sending communications to them. This practice is called list cleaning.
There are a few different ways you can manage your unengaged subscribers:
- Suppress them (recommended)Periodically suppressing your unengaged subscribers is a great way to ensure that you never accidentally send communications to these people. Suppressing contacts means that their profiles will remain intact, but you won't be able to send anything to them. They don't count towards your subscription plan and you won't be charged for them. Suppressed profiles can become unsuppressed at any time by re-subscribing, and you will retain all historical data about them.
- Delete themDeleting unengaged subscribers means that you will entirely remove them from your account. If they ever interact with your brand, they will appear as an entirely new profile with no historical data.
- Exclude them from your campaignsYou may also want to exclude unengaged segments from receiving campaigns communications. They still have the opportunity to interact with action-based emails, like order confirmations, and they can fall back into your engaged master list based on certain conditions.
Churn Risk Customers
Churn risk customers are those who are about to stop buying from you forever, but haven't yet crossed the threshold. You want to re-engage them with a discount or other type of incentive while you still have the chance to win them back. If you already have a win-back flow set up, you can periodically send re-engagement campaigns to target customers before they leave.
We recommend using plain text and being as personal as you can in the email by using the first_name tag and sending it from a personal email address, like "Marissa from CartsGuru." Include content about any new products that have been released since they've become inactive and consider offering a discount to encourage a purchase.
You will want to include prominent “unsubscribe” and “manage preferences” links if subscribers want to update their settings rather than unsubscribe completely. Consider segmenting your newsletter by email frequency to avoid bombarding subscribers with emails and causing them to become inactive.
Once the campaign is running, closely monitor your open rates to determine whether or not the campaign was successful. If you get open rates above 10%, you can consider the campaign successful and may want to repeat this practice. Once you've given your campaign time to make an impact, you may also want to suppress those who did not respond.