segmentation for b2b personalization

As we explored in my previous blog post, segments are a powerful aspect of your personalization strategy. They allow you to target different groups of people on your website or in your app, send emails to different audiences, and analyze the differences between different groups. I also discussed the different data sources you can use to create segments. Once you have your data sources, the next step is to apply segments to inform your personalization strategy. This post explores the three areas where segments can help you successfully develop personalization campaigns and measure success.

1. Campaign Targeting

The most obvious use of segments is for targeting your personalization campaigns. Segments can help you organize your website by only showing relevant content to each visitor. Instead of showing the same content to everyone, you can use segments to speak differently to small business vs. enterprise visitors, first-time vs. returning visitors, and deliver specific content to visitors depending on location, industry, target account, and other criteria. This tactic will maximize real estate on your website and help increase conversions by making sure visitors don’t get bogged down by irrelevant content and ensuring that each visitor feels your site is relevant to him or her.

For example, Mendix promotes different content directly in its site navigation to different visitors based on their industry.

account-based marketing strategy types
Mendix’s navigation includes content recommendations based on the visitor’s industry — insurance, in this case.

On the Evergage homepage, we promote different copy, images, CTAs, quotes, content assets, customer logos, and more based on a visitor’s industry, preferred use case, whether they are an existing customer or prospect, and what content affinities they have demonstrated.

Evergage’s homepage adjusts for different segments based on industry and use case preferences. This example shows a banner image, copy, CTA, customer quote, and customer logos for a retail industry visitor.

Data protection solution provider Datto delivers geo-targeted messages to visitors in certain areas to promote its events only to those who would actually care about them.

examples of B2B personalization
Datto delivers geo-targeted messages to drive event attendance — in this example, a visitor from Charlotte, NC is seeing a message about a local event.

The opportunities to target different content to different groups of visitors on your site are limitless. While I’ve described some of the major segments my clients tend to use, you can create very granular segments to target your campaigns. For instance, you can target a specific experience or message only to visitors in the telecommunications industry who have been to the site before and have downloaded at least one eBook or case study. The criteria depends on your specific goals.

2. Campaign Measurement

With your targeted personalization campaigns — as with most marketing tactics — it’s important to measure outcomes to ensure that the campaigns are having a positive impact on your KPIs and improving your overall site experience. Of course, you’ll want to understand the impact each campaign has broadly on some global goals, such as conversion or bounce rate. But what works for one audience may not work for another, so segments allow you to drill down into campaign performance with filters.

For example, you may run a campaign similar to the Mendix use case I described earlier, which promotes different content assets in the site navigation to specific target industries. Let’s say that you find this campaign is doing well (as Mendix found), and it increases the conversion rate of your content assets. But you decide to dig deeper into the campaign performance by looking at how it performs for different groups. You may find, for example, that the campaign performs better for returning visitors rather than first-time visitors. You may hypothesize that first-time visitors might be looking for different types of content. You can use that information to further refine your campaign.

It’s ideal to set up these segments before designing the campaigns you want to tackle. If you’ve already implemented personalization campaigns, it doesn’t hurt to review these segments on a yearly, if not quarterly, basis. As your organization’s goals evolve, you want to make sure you have the right segmentation framework in place so you can make the most informed decisions for your personalization strategy.

3. Analysis

Finally, utilizing segments for analysis can help you uncover the mysteries behind your website traffic and give you additional ideas for new personalization campaigns. You can create segments as broad as “downloaded a white paper today” or get more specific, such as “downloaded a white paper and favorite industry is technology.” You can compare those segments to visitors who never download a white paper.

By analyzing the differences in segments, you might find certain audiences are more likely to convert on specific pages, or that one particular resource works better for a particular group of people. One-size-fits-all doesn’t have to be the norm anymore, and segments are the key to uncovering patterns in behavior to help guide your personalization campaigns.

Final Thoughts

By using segments to target campaigns to different groups, measure your campaign performance, and analyze the differences in your audience, you can deliver more relevant and engaging experiences on your website. Give some thought to how your company can leverage segmentation in these three ways.