Market Segmentation: Should You Create Unique Customer Personas?
The advent of digital communication technology has increased market segmentation capabilities enormously. From the ability to advertise based on only the broadest demographic, socio-economic, and lifestyle factors, businesses now have the means to market on a molecular level. Companies considering hyper-segmented marketing have several questions. What is market segmentation exactly? How do I create a customer segmentation strategy? Is it worth it? What are the challenges involved in market segmentation and how can I overcome them? Today we will answer these questions.
What is market segmentation?
Also known as customer segmentation or creating customer personas, market segmentation is “a marketing strategy that divides consumers’ interests, demographics and behavior into different groups to better market to specific needs.” Consumers can be divided into groups for targeted marketing based on a wide variety of factors including location, age, profession, income level, shared interests, specific behaviors, affiliations, etc.
“If you’re trying to persuade people to do something, or buy something, it seems to me you should use their language, the language they use every day, the language in which they think.”
– DAVID OGILVY
Through the process of customer segmentation, businesses can ascertain which sections of their market are most profitable (and therefore where to focus their advertising efforts). They will also gain a greater understanding of how best to reach each customer persona and drive them to take the desired actions.
What are the challenges of market segmentation?
As a media and public relations firm, we’ve utilized a segmented audience marketing strategy for clients as well as for internal marketing endeavors. We find that often the biggest challenge to implementing a successful marketing segmentation approach is a lack of time spent on pre-campaign planning.
Segmentation alone is no guarantee of marketing success. As experts on targeting niche markets and market segmentation, we’ve developed a proven process that drives real results. Companies who wish to implement market segmentation successfully will need to follow a number of steps including:
- Defining the problems they’re looking to solve with market segmentation
- Developing create crystal-clear objectives for their marketing segmentation strategy that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound
- Identifying detailed buyer personas for each target market segment
- Identifying the best ways to utilize market segmentation, given their challenges, goals, and available resources
- Developing a timeline for implementing each stage of their marketing segmentation strategy
- Tracking the results of their marketing segmentation strategy
- Tweaking the marketing segmentation strategy and tactics as necessary to achieve the desired results
Creating sector-specific content is an exciting endeavor, but it can be difficult to decide where to focus one’s efforts and time. There are, after all, a wide range of ways for companies to utilize market segmentation. From SEO-optimized content, to sector-specific emails, to geo-targeted mobile ad campaigns, marketing avenues and tactics abound.
By creating clear objectives and detailed timelines, businesses will be able to prioritize their marketing work properly and allocate time and resources appropriately for maximum effectiveness and efficiency. The development of detailed buyer personas will enable targeted content to maximize customer engagement.
Aside from the challenges associated with the common lack of appropriate pre-campaign planning, there are a number of issues businesses may encounter depending on which marketing tactics they utilize to reach each specific customer segment. These can range from SEO competition to the need to troubleshoot a lack of audience engagement with email marketing or targeted ad campaigns. Tracking market segmentation campaign results will allow companies to recognize both wins and challenges, and to refine their strategy as necessary to achieve maximum ROI.
Is market segmentation worth it?
We strongly encourage businesses to create buyer personas for their target markets, and to segment their customer and contact lists where appropriate. After all, the best way to successfully engage with any audience is to understand who they are and what they want so you can speak to their unique needs and motivations.
When you take the time to identify buyer personas for your intended audience, you’ll have a more complete picture of who they are and how to reach them efficiently and effectively. The deep understanding of your customer base that you gain in the development process drives everything from content creation and the advertising channels you use to sales follow up and your company priorities. Because of this, developing comprehensive buyer personas and utilizing market segmentation strategies will not only help companies attract larger amounts of better qualified leads, it can also assist in keeping existing customers content and engaged.
Here at MSS Media, Inc., we’ve been providing Education, Government, Real Estate & Lifestyle clients with succinct, optimized, and successful marketing solutions for more than 15 years. Consider MSSmedia a full-service, one-stop shop for all your Media and Public Relations needs. Your goals are our motivation. And our mission is to propel your message, further and faster, to achieve the outcomes you’re looking for. If you found this blog post helpful, please share!
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