E-commerce Link: Back to School
Forrester Research issued a report in January 2012 that evaluated the top email service providers. As part of the evaluation, the analyst firm asked marketers about various aspects of segmentation:
- 73 percent of marketers surveyed segment email recipients based on site behavior. This means they examine browsing behavior to determine products and product categories of interest and then use that information to craft targeted messaging.
- 68 percent use past purchase behavior to segment. RFM is an important direct marketing technique based on the proposition that 80 percent of your business comes from 20 percent of your customers. Look at how recently a customer has purchased (recency), how often they purchase (frequency), and how much the customer spends (monetary).
- 53 percent have a program to address inactive users. Marketers find ways to identify those who are not opening and clicking, and put plans in place to re-engage these recipients.
If you don't have much data and feel it will take too long to capture meaningful information, here are some thoughts:
Work with a third-party data provider to overlay data on your file. There are many reputable vendors, such as Acxiom, Experian and KBM Group. Start by examining what data fields they have, decide what elements make sense for your business, and then provide a test file. You'll be able to see what match rates you get before you move further.
One online company to check out is Connection Engine (connectionengine.com). InsightConnect is one of its service offerings; check out the short video on its home page. It describes the company's real-time data analysis offering that uses more than 50 billion data points including demographics, income and geography. You simply upload a test file of email addresses. The company will also provide you with a look at your customers' propensity to purchase in 50 different categories, as well as lifestyle interests. Best of all, you can try this online service for free.