Achieve Advanced Segmentation for Email Marketing Campaigns

In my last blog post, I discussed How to Prioritize PPC Ad Spend with Customer Lifetime Value. So now you know how to tie lifetime value to customer records for PPC gains, but you should also use hidden customer data to improve your email campaigns. Aside from lifetime value, you can use your customers’ social data, interests, demographics and web behaviors in your email segmentation.

Now, I’m sure you already segment your campaigns based on customer actions, and maybe you even use lifetime value to discover which actions are actually worth segmenting. But have you segmented your email campaigns by which customers are interested in fly fishing AND earn over $50,000 a year AND opened your newsletter last week?

And no, this does NOT require your Dev team to create fields/flags/ etc. for every interest, income or demographic.


  • Customer Email Addresses

  • Lifetime Value by Customer (Manually or via a Customer Data Platform)

  • Customer Data Activators

  • Email Automation Tool


If you don’t have data about your customers’ interests you need to utilize activators first. Activators are awesome, and the best CDPs should have them (we use Umbel’s, of course). If you don’t know what they are, read about them here. You can place activators on gated content, make them a requirement for a contest or add them to your billing page. Just make sure you use them in areas where you also know the customer’s email address.

Once your users connect via your activator, your CDP can extract and organize their interests, demographics, income, etc. into segments.Rather than have your Dev team map fields into your Email Automation Tool for all of these segment types, simply export sets of emails from your CDP. You can import the emails into your Email Automaton Tool as a contact group or list and stay focused on marketing without ever involving IT or Dev. Cool, right?

Download emails for any customer segment or combination of segments and import them into your Email Automation Tool.

Before you go segmentation crazy though, remember you only need to be segmenting campaigns on values that actually matter. So go back into your CDP and sort your customer interests or segments by impact on lifetime value. Pick out the segments with the highest LTV and attack those first. With this data you can easily justify enhanced email segmentation and avoid the nightmare of over-segmenting a campaign based on values that don’t really matter.

The hard way: If you haven’t picked up a CDP after Tip #1, and you come to your marketing team with a request to segment based on customer interests, you will be probably get blank stares or tears of confusion. To achieve this segmentation manually, you will need to build your own activators (maybe an interest survey) or mine through your Facebook audience data and gather high level insights. The most difficult challenge will be mapping those interests to individual customers and then trying to also calculate LTV. You then need your Dev team to create many custom fields so you can create your filters, queries, smart lists, etc. from within your Email Automation tool.

Whether you automate everything with a CDP or manually architect a miracle, knowing which interests, demographics and actions affect LTV for your email subscribers is critical. Achieve advanced segmentation that drives real value, all by using the customer data you already generate on a daily basis.  

Want more tips? Download our White Paper 10 Ways to Use Data to Increase Conversions

Download Now