Customer Segmentation: How it Works
Each business has a unique set of customers with varying needs and interests. As a brand, it’s your job to identify those needs and present a solution that meets or exceeds their expectations. How do you achieve that? Through customer segmentation.
Customer segmentation is the process of dividing a target audience and grouping them based on similar characteristics. By segregating your customers into subsets, you get a better feel for their needs and improve their buying experience.
This article will discuss how customer segmentation works and how it can benefit your brand in communicating with your audience. Let’s get started!
Why is customer segmentation important?
Customer segmentation plays a vital role in helping brands create better marketing campaigns. With varying personalities and buying habits, you want to tailor your marketing efforts accordingly depending on the customers you’re looking to target. Doing so makes your promotions more attractive, timely, and relevant, thus achieving greater results.
Some of the well-known benefits of customer segmentation include:
1. Identify opportunities for product development
Segmenting customers allows you to obtain information from various subsets, thus identifying their unique needs, which you may haven’t been aware of before. This process opens up opportunities for new product ideas and provides an ideal solution for your customers. You can also fine-tune your offerings to improve customer satisfaction rates.
2. Personalize communication
Brands must establish deeper relationships with customers to obtain trust and foster brand loyalty. With customer segmentation, you learn more about which communication channels they prefer and how they respond to specific tones/messaging.
For example, people respond differently to advertisements on Facebook compared to Instagram/TikTok, as the latter platforms place greater emphasis on short-form content. By personalizing your communication efforts, customers can easily relate to your messaging and recognize the human aspect of your brand.
3. Cross-sell with greater efficiency
Understanding your customer’s buying behavior can open up opportunities for cross-selling. Cross-selling is an excellent way to boost revenue, and it can also drive up customer satisfaction when done correctly.
Depending on the segmented group, you can identify which customers are likely to purchase add-ons and avail of limited-time offers. Remember, you can only cross-sell to buyers who see the value in your other offerings. Otherwise, it’ll be a major annoyance and hamper the buying experience of your customers.
How do you segment customers?
So you plan on segmenting your customers, but you’re unsure how to approach it. Here’s how you can implement customer segmentation and group your buyers accordingly.
1. Demographic segmentation
The easiest way to segment your customers is to divide them into demographic groups. Customers mainly purchase products that are in line with their needs/interests, and these factors vary depending on their age, gender, income level, and more.
- Age – Consumer preferences shift as they age, hence making it an important variable when segmenting your customers. Different generations respond differently to marketing, thus making age segmentation important to tailor your marketing strategies according to their responses.
- Gender – Gender is another variable that brands use to segment their customers and improve communications. When you segment customers by gender, you learn more about which products appeal to a specific gender. You can also create unique selling points that cater to the needs of male and female customers, allowing you to secure more sales.
- Income level – Segmenting customers by income enables brands to identify which customers have the most spending power. Doing so opens up opportunities for cross-selling/upselling, thus improving customer lifetime value and fostering brand loyalty.
- Location – Location matters when segmenting customers because small businesses with limited budgets can be more cost-effective with their marketing strategies. Customers have varying income levels in different regions, which is why location-based segmentation is crucial in knowing which products you can market to certain areas.
2. Behavioral segmentation
Actions speak louder than words, and behavioral segmentation is a great way of grouping your customer base. Behavioral segmentation refers to how customers interact with your brand and grouping them according to set patterns. For example, you can group customers according to buying frequency/purchase behavior, or you can group them based on social media engagement/activity.
With behavioral segmentation, you get a better understanding of how customers spend their money on your brand. From there, you can make better price adjustments, identify your most loyal customers, and create tailor-made solutions to address their pain points.
3. Needs-based segmentation
Needs-based segmentation is as straightforward as it sounds. You group customers who share similar pain points and provide a solution for each group. For example, say you run a men’s grooming brand and want to segment your customers based on needs. You can categorize buyers based on their skincare, hygiene, and grooming needs.
This type of customer segmentation lets you play to your brand’s strengths and enable you to target opportunity segments to maximize sales. Of course, you’ll need to gather more information about your customers to narrow down their exact needs, but once you have the data available, you can start segmenting your buyers more accurately.
4. Psychographic segmentation
Psychographic segmentation works differently in that it groups customers based on their psychological characteristics. What are these characteristics, you may ask? These include personalities, values, lifestyles, social statuses, and more.
A great example is segmenting customers who show strong support for buying eco-friendly products. You can gain their trust through recyclable packaging or develop a new product using low-impact materials that are sustainable for the environment.
Some questions worth answering when doing psychographic segmentation are:
- What motivates my customers to purchase my products?
- What are their inherent beliefs?
- How does their lifestyle influence their buying decision?
When you have answers to these questions, you’ll be better equipped to segment your customers based on their psychological traits.
5. Value-based segmentation
Value-based segmentation focuses on the customers that deliver the most value to your business. You can identify which customers exhibit this trait by calculating their customer lifetime value, which you can learn by reading our article.
Small businesses only have a limited budget to work with, and if you happen to fall within that category, you want to maximize your funds as much as possible. By targeting your high-value customers, you can secure repeat sales and develop stronger relationships.
Learning how to segment your customers is a powerful tool in helping you create effective marketing campaigns. By understanding how customers perceive your brand, you can develop consistent messaging to make your products more appealing. Hopefully, this article gives you insight into how customer segmentation works and how you can implement it successfully in your brand.
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