9 Proven Ways to Segment Your B2B Email List

Segment your B2B email list to provide more value, drive more engagement, and generate ROI. Here are some ideas to deliver more targeted marketing.

How can you more effectively engage with your subscribers, users, and customers through email marketing? How can you provide more value? Do you know what they want and need in order to help them on their journey? 

These are things I always consider before sending out email communications. Email is a powerful marketing channel and, year over year, consistently drives more revenue than any other medium. In fact, email generates $38 for every $1 spent, making it one of the most effective channels available.

One simple way to immediately improve your email marketing conversion rates is by segmenting your list. Did you know that 39% of marketers who segmented their email lists experienced higher open rates? The benefits don’t stop there — better deliverability, increased sales leads, and greater revenue are all noteworthy benefits of email list segmentation. 

segment your b2b email list

If you’re ready to drive more sales, generate conversions, and deliver the right message, to the right person, at the right time, segmenting your email list is an excellent place to start.

To help you get started with segmentation, here are nine ways you can segment your B2B email list and boost email marketing engagement. If you’re interested in a great introductory course on email marketing, I recommend this course by Hubspot.

9 Proven Ways to Segment Your Email List

Engagement

Take a look at your subscribers and create a segment of the contacts who have engaged (opened and/or clicked) with your emails in the past 3 months. Then, only send future communications to engaged subscribers. This helps your campaign metrics and also boosts your likelihood of landing in the recipient’s inbox. The greater percentage of subscribers that open/click your emails, the more favorable your inbox placement. Anyone who hasn’t engaged with your emails should be segmented off and sent a re-engagement campaign.  

 

Job Title

Will a CEO really be interested in your new line of productivity tools for marketers? Probably not. If you’ve captured the job title of your contacts, you have a golden opportunity to segment based on job title and role responsibilities. 

Pro Tip: Remember, use a dropdown or radio select for this field since a single-text field cannot be easily filtered or sorted.

 

Industry

As a B2B business, you may offer products across several industries. If you’re lumping all of your subscribers into one big list and sending them every product and service offering, much of what is received will be irrelevant. When content isn’t relevant, people stop engaging. Segmenting by industry will also help avoid unnecessary unsubscribes. 

 

Product/Service Type

It’s common for B2B organizations to offer several different products and services. Knowing what your prospect is interested in, and targeting them with that content, is a great way to drive engagement and help move them along the buyer’s journey. 

Pro tip: Create a sales content matrix to help map your content to the appropriate stage in the buyer’s journey. 

 

Loyal/Top customers

Your top customers deserve special attention. Several times a year, take a moment to look at your database and do something special for your top customers. Whether that be mailing a simple “thank you” card or another token of appreciation like a special offer, giving a little special treatment to your loyal customers is a win-win. 

 

Choice of Email Client

This may not seem like an obvious option but don’t overlook the power of designing for the right email client. If you are designing image-heavy emails and the majority of your users don’t have images enabled or are on older clients, this could dramatically affect your engagement. Another reason you may consider segmenting by email client is due to deliverability. Some organizations experience poor deliverability in one email client and excellent deliverability in another. By segmenting out the client with poor deliverability and only sending to the one with excellent deliverability, you are able to ensure your messages are being received and your metrics are accurate. It’s worth noting that continuously sending to email clients that put your messages in the spam folder causes more damage to your ability to land in the inbox. 

 

Geography

With data processing and data privacy laws like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), it is more important than ever to segment your email list by geography to ensure you are in compliance. You can learn more about GDPR here and CCPA here.

 

Stage in the Sales Cycle

Knowing where your prospect is in the buyer’s journey is a valuable way to send targeted, relevant emails. In many cases, you want to be sure a buyer that is further along the sales cycle is excluded from content that targets the “Awareness” stage. 

Pro tip: For buyers in the “Consideration” stage, we recommend tapping into sales engagement platforms like webinars and podcasts

 

Historical Data

Do you know what content your contacts have downloaded? What webinars have they watched on-demand? Have they attended any of your live events? Any historical data you have on your contacts can be used to segment and target with relevant messaging. 

 

There are dozens of other ways to segment your email lists – these are just a few ideas to get you thinking about your database. Want to stay inspired? Get monthly insights to help you increase sales in our monthly resource-packed newsletter ScalingB2B.

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