As a small business owner, you probably wear multiple hats. You might be in charge of operations, marketing, and customer service. When it comes to marketing, you can take a hint from the professionals by narrowing your direct mail outreach to a specific audience. Professional marketers and providers of custom mail services call this process segmentation.
Segmentation means defining your audience in the following ways:
1. Demographics – Who is your audience?
You could segment your mailing list by non-character traits. This includes age, gender, race, income, religion, and others. If your product or service is more likely to be used by women, you wouldn’t want to include men or teenagers. If your offerings are higher priced, you wouldn’t want to target people with low incomes. By narrowing your segment to relevant people, you won’t lose marketing dollars to unqualified people.
2. Behavior – How does your audience behave?
Do you know your audience’s behavioral habits? Are they prone to shopping sprees? Do they only purchase what they need? How thoroughly do they research their options before making a purchase? What does brand loyalty look like for them? Millennials and Gen Z tend to have lower brand loyalty than older generations, so if you target a younger audience, you might shift your marketing to focus on perceived value instead.
3. Geographic – Where does your audience live?
One of the most important factors for a business that serves local customers is geographic location. Your audience should be narrowed to your service areas, whether zip code, city, or county. If your business has greater outreach, you could tailor your marketing to be specific for certain areas. For example, if you own an online clothing store, you might mail ads for winter-appropriate clothing to people in northern states. The more relevant to your audience, the more you’ll ensure they read.
4. Psychographic – Why does your audience think that way?
This segmentation method can be trickier because it’s based on personalities and personal interests. This is the most abstract of the other methods, and requires great knowledge of how your audience thinks. Psychographic elements include hobbies, lifestyles, and beliefs. Is your audience adverse to animal products? Do they prefer eco-friendly products? How about purchasing products from companies that donate a share of the profit to charity? Though more difficult to narrow down, psychographic information can pay off well.