Email Segmentation Strategies: 4 Ways to Customize Every Subscriber’s Experience

Are you looking for new ways to personalize your emails?

We both know there’s more to email personalization than name fields. And yet that’s where many companies’ email personalization strategies begin and end.

Why? In most cases, I’m guessing it’s because they don’t have a solid email segmentation strategy.

Email segmentation enables the kind of personalization that drives real revenue. For just one example, home decor retailer Dormify told MarketingSherpa they earned a 92% increase in email revenue when they started breaking their list into segments like:

  • Incoming college freshmen
  • Parents shopping for students
  • Students moving to an off-campus apartment
  • Young adults moving out on their own

Segments like these are based on subscribers’ behavior, not just the (sometimes unreliable) data they type into forms.

In this post, I will show you exactly how to create a personalized experience for your subscribers through better email segmentation.

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1. Customize Your Calls to Action & Close More Sales from Email

The segment: customers who’ve used a particular service

Recommended personalization tactic: Create custom calls to action based on service type.

Email segmentation is especially helpful for small businesses seeking a simple, cost-effective way to speak directly to their customers. By segmenting your audiences, you can send relevant content that fits their individualized needs.

Let’s say your business serves several types of customers, like a beauty salon. As a hair stylist, your clientele may include two kinds of customers, those who prefer chemical hair treatments and others who prefer using no chemicals (just a natural hairstyle).

If you use an online booking system like Acuity and an automation platform like Drip, you can segment customers based on their preferences as soon as they book their service.

Acuity in particular will record the appointment type as a custom field, so you can set up a simple automation rule to tag clients with their service type. Like this:

Now, that you have all your customers tagged, you can send all your subscribers an email with a customized call to action that caters to their personal needs.

Let’s say your beauty salon is preparing for a Summer Hair Blowout Sale. You want to send an email giving the customer details about the sale, but you also want to give your email subscribers an extra 15% discount on hair products.

Well, you know that natural treatment customers don’t use the same hair products as chemical treatment customers. And if the coupon doesn’t specify, every customer will flood your phone lines to ask you more questions.

To circumvent the chaos, Drip combined with Liquid shortcode gives you the power to send one email with different calls to action to each customer.

Here’s an example of how to customize your call to action in an email …

Hi, {{ subscriber.FirstName }}!

We’re excited to announce our Summer Hair Blowout Sale. You’ll receive the best prices on all our products and services. Visit our website for more information or come into the salon for the latest news.

{% if subscriber.tags contains “Natural_Treatment” %} P.S. As an extra bonus, we wanted to give you a 15% discount on our brand new Natural Styling Gel. Just type 15GEL during checkout. {% endif %}

{% if subscriber.tags contains “Chemical_Treatment” %} P.S. As an extra bonus, we wanted to give you a 15% discount on our brand new Moisture Strength Creme. Just type 15CREME during checkout. {% endif %}

This strategy makes it easy to target specific customer segments without the hassle of writing multiple emails—saving you time to focus on other business tasks.

2. Route Contacts into Different Sequences Based on Their Persona

The segment: subscribers with specific attributes

Recommended personalization tactic: Segment subscribers by their buyer personas.

Most businesses serve different types of customers, and sending generic messages to everybody on your email list won’t appeal to anyone.

The same rule applies when creating sequences or workflows for your email subscribers. Jerry, a frequent customer, should get different emails from prospect Mark, who recently signed up for your email newsletter.

You probably already create customized content to fit your specific buyer personas. You know which individuals would be a perfect fit to join your customer base.

With that in mind, you can use those attributes that differentiate each buyer to segment your list of subscribers. To get the most from your email segmentation, stick to characteristics that warrant personalized messaging. Here are a few:

  • Company size
  • Reason for product use
  • Location

After you determine the qualities that fit each buyer, you’re ready to build a Persona Checker workflow. This will help you tag all your subscribers with a specific persona, so that you can route them into different sequences.

You will create multiple decisions to determine if subscribers meet (or don’t meet) a certain criteria. (You’re using the characteristics you selected above.)

Going back to my beauty salon example, I have three buyer personas: Sarah, Josie, Paul. I’ve given each different qualities to merit a personalized experience, each of which I’ll track using custom fields passed over from my booking and payment integrations.

Sarah: Natural Treatment – Premium Price – Career Purpose

Josie: Chemical Treatment – Price Sensitive – Career Purpose

Paul: Chemical Treatment – Price Sensitive – Leisure Purpose

Once I know how I’m defining my personas, I can build a Persona Checker workflow…

By tagging each subscriber with the appropriate buyer persona, you can now send your prospects and customers through specific sequences. You’ll know exactly who to send daily promotions or who to deliver educational tools.

3. Reduce Product-Page Abandonment

The segment: subscribers who’ve visited a specific product page

Recommended personalization tactic: Create a workflow to send targeted abandonment emails.

Every dollar counts for your small business. So you’ll be glad to know that you can drive sales for your company even after someone leaves your website.

Let’s say a visitor lands on your product or category page, but decides to leave without adding anything to their shopping cart. Normally, those visitors would become lost leads.

But you can lure those interested visitors back to your website, including to the specific product page, with the help of product-page abandonment campaigns. (Learn how The Kewl Shop used this technique as a revenue driver.)

You’ll need the visitor’s email address for this strategy, and you will have to install your Drip JavaScript snippet on every page of your website to identify each subscriber.

Once identified visitors land on the specific product page, they will enter your Drip workflow. In the example below, if the visitor doesn’t purchase the product within 1 hour, she will receive an email with the subject line “Hair Styling Gel.”

When crafting your product-page abandonment, thank the visitor for taking the time to check out your inventory. You also can give particular details about the product and why the person should return to make the purchase. Pro Tip: Make your contact information visible and easily accessible for the subscriber to follow up with questions.

Image from Fresh Relevance

Taking advantage of subscriber behavior ensures you send the right email to the right person. Plus, all these tasks run automatically once you set up your Drip account.

4. Modify Your Welcome Sequence Based on How Subscribers Found You

The segment: visitors who requested a specific content upgrade

Recommended personalization tactic: Create a unique welcome workflow based on the lead magnet.

You’ve heard it before: first impressions matter. How you introduce prospects to your business will determine the rest of the customer relationship.

That’s why it’s so important to customize the experience from the very beginning. You want new email subscribers to feel an instant connection with your business.

Start by giving your email subscribers more of what they enjoy. For instance, you could send people who opted in for a video course to more video content and send folks who opted in for an ebook to a more in-depth resource.

In Drip, you can route people into different welcome sequences or modify one sequence depending on the form they submitted that got them onto your list.

To direct people to separate workflows, you can create a rule that will trigger each sequence. The workflow below only starts if a person submits a form to receive the Beauty Tips content upgrade.

To modify one sequence, record a custom event, apply a particular tag, or set a custom field when your lead submits a specific form. Then, you can use Decisions to check if they have performed that custom event, possess that tag, or met the custom field value criteria.

Now all you have to do is personalize the workflow experience. In the example below, a visitor who submits a form from the homepage receives the standard Welcome campaign, while visitors who submit the Hair Care Upgrade form start a customized Welcome campaign with more hair care tips.

Personalize the first interactions you have with your leads. By mapping out their welcome sequence beforehand, you’ll be equipped to lead your subscribers to customized engagement.

Send Personalized Emails to Every Subscriber

Delivering customized emails doesn’t have to be a time-consuming process. By using email segmentation and automation, you can send targeted content to every subscriber every time.

You can try all the strategies mentioned above right now. Click the button below to open a free Drip account.

Click Here to Get Started with Drip Today for Free

How do you personalize emails for your subscribers? Share your strategies in the comments below!