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Clean and lean data: Does it really need to be segmented?

By Laura Smith, Account Handler at Bluestorm

Email marketing is a valuable tool for any business and is the perfect partner for social media when it comes to directly communicating and engaging with your target audience. But the success of an e-marketing campaign relies heavily on data and, more importantly, how it is segmented and cleansed.

Basically, data consists of the email address and details of the people you are contacting. The data you gather will be collected in a number of ways – through your website and email sign-up forms and perhaps even through a data capture device at events. It should give you an idea of who they are and what they might want to hear from you. Segmenting your data and therefore communication can have a direct impact on the success of your e-marketing campaigns.

Tailoring the content in your emails to appeal to individual groups is beneficial. It offers a more “personalised” and engaging approach – your customers aren’t all the same and there is very rarely a ‘one size fits all’ customer. For example, in the food industry, catering for a shop owner with a food service offering as well as a manager of a chain of restaurants would require a very different message/approach. The wrong message landing in someone’s inbox will only go one way – in the recycle bin. It will make them disinterested in what you have to say, disengaged and may even lead to them removing themselves from your mailing list by thinking of you as ‘spam’.

There are different points in the sale cycle where you need to communicate different types of messages too. For example, you’d distribute a different message to someone when they are a customer to when they were your potential customer. You can also send a tailored message after you have secured their business and cross-sell new products.

By communicating effectively, your reputation will improve and you’ll see better results. Marketing software brand, hubspot, claims segmented and nurturing emails generate an 8% click through rate compared to general sends which generate just 3% click though, therefore this approach is more engaging.

Once you understand the types of individuals that make up your customer base, segmentation becomes much easier and understandable. Try to have as many fields filled in as possible such as a name, job title, company, address, email – the more personalised and segmented your approach is, the better. Having “clean” lists is also important. Delete spammy, unmanned email inboxes and concentrate on the quality address that could generate authentic business leads. You don’t want to get penalised for poor data either.

Need help segmenting and cleansing your data?

Having accurate, up-to-date data is vital for your business. If you’d like to know more about how to get the most from your data and, in particular, how it can be best utilised for direct forms of communication, email Laura Smith at laura.smith@bluestormdesign.co.uk

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