Last-Minute Segmentation: Fast and Foolproof Audience Segments for BFCM

Nov 15, 2022 12:00 PM1:00 PM EST

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Key Discussion Takeaways:

With the holidays approaching, many brands are in a frenzy to make the most out of their campaigns, reach targeted audiences, and achieve Q4 goals. Is there anything brands can do at the last minute to boost success?

The answer lies in audience segmentation. Instead of sending batch-and-blast messages to your entire customer list, it’s crucial that you break down your audience into subgroups. This way, you’ll be able to tailor your messaging to each subgroup, thus increasing the open rate — and success rate — of your messaging campaigns. What other segmentation practices can set you up for a profitable Black Friday and Cyber Monday? 

In this virtual event, Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson is joined by Jordan Brannon, the President of Coalition Technologies, to get expert advice on audience segmentation during the holiday season. Jordan shares the major mistakes to avoid when creating marketing campaigns, different segmentation categories and their benefits, and easy wins to entice customers to purchase.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • How audience segmentation can help you in the last week before Black Friday and Cyber Monday
  • Jordan Brannon explains why email is often the most poorly managed marketing technique
  • What are the most significant email and SMS setup mistakes?
  • The different customer segments that can be valuable this time of year
  • Jordan shares easy wins for audience segmentation
  • Best practices for SMS segmentation: send less during the holiday season
  • Jordan’s recommendations for paid advertising and remarketing campaigns
  • Why segmentation success is not dependent on content channels
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Event Partners

Coalition Technologies

Coalition Technologies is a leading SEO, PPC & web design agency in the United States that does a variety of work across leading eCom platforms including: Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, Vtex, and others.

Connect with Coalition Technologies

Guest Speaker

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson LinkedIn

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Jordan Brannon

Jordan Brannon LinkedIn

President at Coalition Technologies

Jordan Brannon is the President of Coalition Technologies, a company that provides SEO services in digital marketing, design, web development, and PPC advertising. Jordan’s expertise in digital strategies has shaped his career for more than a decade, where he focused on developing solutions that allow for more qualified leads, better traffic conversion, and SEO optimization.

Event Moderator

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson LinkedIn

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Jordan Brannon

Jordan Brannon LinkedIn

President at Coalition Technologies

Jordan Brannon is the President of Coalition Technologies, a company that provides SEO services in digital marketing, design, web development, and PPC advertising. Jordan’s expertise in digital strategies has shaped his career for more than a decade, where he focused on developing solutions that allow for more qualified leads, better traffic conversion, and SEO optimization.

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Aaron Conant

Co-Founder & Managing Director at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution.

Co-Founder & Managing Director Aaron Conant runs the group & connects with dozens of brand executives every week, always for free.

Schedule a free consultation call

Discussion Transcription

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  0:18  

Happy Tuesday everyone. I am Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson, a digital strategist at PwC connect, and we are knowledge sharing networking group, we stay on top of latest trends challenges whatever is going on within the digital landscape, we want to know about it. We are on track to do at least 500 of these virtual events this year due to the increase in demand to better understand everything in the digital space. And we will be doing at least 100 in person support a small format dinners this year as well, which is crazy to think that the year is almost over and we've done that many. So if you happen to be in a tier one city, we'll be kicking them off in 2023. As well shoot us an email these dinners are typically 15 to 20 people having a discussion around a specific digital topic and it's always an awesome time. We spend the majority of our time here at BW eg talking to brands to stay on top of the different trends love to have a conversation with you, you can drop me a line at Tiffany And we can get some time on the calendar. It's from these conversations we generate the topic ideas we know what people want to learn about. But it's also where we gain our resident experts such as Coalition Technologies, who's here with us today. So anybody that we asked to speak to the collective team has come highly recommended from brands within our network. So if you're ever in need of any recommendations, and anything within the digital space, feel free to reach out we have a short list of the best of the best, and we would be happy to provide that information to you. And also just an FYI, FYI, we do have a talent agency. So if you are hiring, feel free to reach out and we can give you contact information on BWG talent as well. So a few housekeeping items. We want this to be fun, educational, conversational. So feel free to drop us any questions, comments you have in the chat q&a bar, do you feel more comfortable, you can email me at And we will be sure to get to them. So with that, let's rock and roll here and start to learn about the last minute segmentation Done, done done before Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It is that time of year already folks can't believe it. The team at Coalition Technologies have been awesome friends in the network for years. I'm gonna kick it off to you, Jordan, if you can give a brief introduction on yourself and we will dive into the information. That'd be awesome. Thank you.

Jordan Brannon  2:33  

Thank you. Yeah, so Coalition is a full service eCommerce focused agency with a lot of great teams that are focused on supporting eCommerce brands, primarily with their own dot coms. Although we have a great marketplace team as well. We do everything from design, development, consulting, SEO, paid search, paid social email, SMS, maintenance type activities, just strategy and consulting. So cover a lot of territory with a great group of people. And this is definitely make or break for us and for our clients. So this is where a lot of work for the year has come in. And so happy to talk about Black Friday.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  3:14  

Fantastic. Well, before we get too far into the call today, because like I said, we have a lot to cover. Just wanted to quickly give you a chance to highlight like how Coalition can be assistance this late in the holiday promotional season. So what are we like a week or so away from the biggest sale events of the year?

Jordan Brannon  3:35  

I think I've probably most of you, like me have already started to get a lot of the Black Friday sale announcements and pre Black Friday and pre Black Friday pre Tuesday emails from people. So there's a sort of a shortened timeline, but we do have a chance to support we've got nearly 300 people. So there's a really great small army really, that we can bring to help support you if you have something that you're you're challenged by in this timeline. So a lot of our kind of last minute new client client kickoffs are tied to you know, some maintenance activity. You know, hosting migrations, if you're concerned about being able to support the traffic, maybe it is site performance, it's just not, you know, smooth and loading quickly. And you kind of know that that could get worse as you push more promotional materials to it. Maybe there's a few little creative things that you need to get done development things needed to get done. Again, great, great resources there. And certainly we're well known for our marketing work. So if there's some things that you would like some assistance with an extra eyes on, you know, as we head into sort of the homestretch as it were,

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  4:43  

we can certainly help. Awesome. Well, let's stick to that theme of last minute efforts and activities here. So we're going to be talking about audience segmentation for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, week. Basically ways of breaking down our audience to an sure that they have an awesome holiday sales week, is that correct?

Jordan Brannon  5:04  

Yeah, for sure. I think, um, you know, a lot of these calls, I try and speak to some of the things that are maybe near and dear to my career in eCommerce, you know, eCommerce platform selection, you know, tech strategy, SEO pay per click. But I think this this segmentation piece is really important. And it's also maybe more achievable. Within a week, right? It's something that there can be some actionable steps to take. And I think it's one that also can pay off, you know, whether it's audience segmentation for email, or SMS or paid, it tends to be sort of a big area for opportunity. But it can also be a big area of a missed or big mistake.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  5:45  

Definitely, it's a very valuable direction for this call. So can you give a little bit of a scope? You know, are we talking about the paid email, the SMS, a subset of all those, like, any other marketing strategies or techniques will engage with

Jordan Brannon  6:03  

them? Yeah, I think if we have time, and obviously, different questions may come in, and things like that can help expand the scope. But you know, I think really probably given given less than an hour, probably talking about email paid. And SMS, mainly, I think, is probably a good good area to dive into, maybe touch on some content strategies, you know, that usually comes up as part of this as well. And if we happen to have extras, we can, we can always dive in to those two.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  6:31  

Since we have plenty to work with here, if you have any preference, and where we start,

Jordan Brannon  6:35  

maybe email I think would probably be a good kind of starting conversation point, I think it tends to be sort of one of the maybe the most common areas for segmentation, to provide an opportunity, and probably one of the ones we're most familiar with, and also, in some ways, sort of maybe a lower level of effort for some brands to to manage internally, especially if that's the the approach that they're going to be taking. And so, you know, I think, you know, maybe a bit of a critique, I think, you know, when we look at brands that are managing some of their marketing channels internally, your email maybe stands out as one of the ones that's often sort of most poorly managed internally.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  7:16  

So why why do you say that? Yeah, I think

Jordan Brannon  7:21  

email just, in general tends to have a fairly high success rate. And so we tend to sort of accept what looks initially to be a strong ROI, we sort of missed that the ceiling could be much higher, you know. So you can have a strong ROI, even when it's managed poorly. And so, you know, I think most brands have, you know, set up their email campaigns, they've gotten into the habit of sort of doing some some basic routines, and maybe a little bit of habits. And they sort of track off of a relatively low baseline, and so incremental improvements over time, or just sort of flexing around those that can kind of get dismissed as being you know, this is how email works. And nobody really spends the time to sort of look diligently at it, and unless they get worse first. And so I think when you do take the time to sort of really begin to optimize your email campaign, and you really are putting a lot of thought into it, you can have some really significant upside in short order. And I think the implication of that is that there's been a long history of missed opportunities, which again, sort of, I think, you know, supports the statement that email is often pretty poorly managed, especially internally, and then sometimes even by agencies. I don't want to sort of make it only be like an internal thing teams, because some agencies are sort of resting on their laurels there.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  8:45  

Yeah, definitely. I can see how, if you're doing well, in a vacuum, it may seem like a success, but when compared to the other opportunities, it may be bigger MIPS? Yep. Yeah, for sure. So are there steps that you'd encourage in house, email or SMS marketers to consider to help them break out of that, I guess, isolated perspective?

Jordan Brannon  9:11  

Yeah, I think always looking for different perspectives is really helpful. There are there are some great people produce content around email strategy, SMS strategy, but I like to subscribe to a lot of competitors, you know, for some of our big brands, our competitors, I also like to look at Affinity brands, you know, because sometimes you'll see something new and different that you can take the formula of and apply it to what you're doing. And then you know, I think start to go beyond just sort of perusing for content, because I think a lot of times when we already do that. I've talked to a lot of marketers, and I think a lot of them, they get into the habit, they look at the content and that's their big takeaway from sort of this this evaluation and competitive review. And they're not necessarily thinking about what the strategies that may be in play. You know why Are they sending you an email? How often are they sending them? What segment might you be placed into? You know, what's the strategy around the content theme you're being presented with? If any, you know, how many calls to action? Are they utilising in an email? What type of content is it visual as a text is it you know, some sort of graphic, you know, gift or something along those lines, you may not necessarily find sort of a silver bullet in the midst of all of that, but at a minimum, you're really generating some good ideas. And I think, in the process of evaluating ideas, sometimes we get more creative. And so I know some of our team members, we keep them Google Drive folders, or, you know, folders in our Gmail accounts and other libraries in their project management software, where we're saving and indexing things from from brands and from competitors. And, again, just maybe things we think are inspirational and a good idea that could be tried someplace new, interesting.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  10:58  

Anything else that comes to mind? Yeah,

Jordan Brannon  11:02  

I would maybe say like, also, you want to kind of be, you know, testing some of your pre existing assumptions about, you know, how your email campaigns are performing, or why they perform the way that they do, I would say, you know, when we talk to like a new client, someone who's just joining with us, or is calling and inquiring about our services, rather than, you know, we'll have statements like, we only send X time of day, because it performs best, you know, people don't shop this time, for our category. We only send this many times per week, because our customers will get exhausted of our communication. You know, most of our customers are the types of shoppers, they're, they're sort of they do this, they shop this way. And I think, you know, you still have time before Thanksgiving, to sort of reexamine some of those notions, and either substantiate them, or perhaps find a way to improve on them. You know, the great benefits of of email marketing, compared to some others that you maybe would tackle is that you can do a B testing in relatively short order, you know, you can AV test a subject line, you can, you know, look at, you know, what's influencing your click through rates, you know, influencing, you know, the, you know, engaging with your content, and emails, you know, look at your send times, all of that is sort of open season and can still be done, which I think is sort of the value of this call is it you have time, and you can do it right up until the day of the sand to be able to

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  12:26  

achieve some of these things, like, well, so then if we turn our attention back to this topic of, you know, what are some of those biggest setup mistakes? For audience segmentation? When it comes to email and SMS?

Jordan Brannon  12:42  

Yeah, I think the top of the list is probably going to be what we refer to as batch and blast, which is basically a nickname for sending to your entire list. The idea behind is that every email in your list has value. And the only way to really realize that values include everybody in your sense. So I think that's sort of the idea behind batch of glasses, probably the probably one of the biggest set of mistakes.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  13:08  

Totally guilty. It was called batch and blast. It's so guilty of this in the past, oh, my goodness. So like, what's the cost of a batch and blast type strategy? Because you may not be maximizing that value of your list per se. But isn't it good to send something instead of nothing? So that your bet? Yeah, I mean, I think the

Jordan Brannon  13:33  

biggest risk probably comes down to deliverability, you know, some email platforms that there's a cost per send or a cost, you know, based on your audience size. So maybe there's, you know, some smaller amounts that are attached to that in terms of an actual cost. But I think deliverability is probably your biggest risk, you know, the more people you're sending to the greater likelihood, you're introducing failure into your email campaigns. And if if that failure is happening, you don't really know why, again, this sort of comes back to maybe some of those metrics we're comfortable with, that we perhaps shouldn't be. And so you know, failure in terms of email. deliverability can can include things like, you know, hard or soft bounce, it can include a spam report, it can include, you know, filters based on a particular ISP or some other networking and the consequences that can be really significant, and anybody who's gone through a phase where they've hit a really bad deliverability stretch, and some of the outcomes of that it can be really hard to unwind from and to clean up from and so I think with batch and blast, you know, if an email or if an ISP or a network or an audience is starting to reject your emails more outright, you know, that recovery process can be very expensive and very frustrating and you can lose a lot of other opportunity to weigh so I think segmentation in some ways can sort of help reduce that risk and minimize the consequences for your audience. And right now, especially you You're heading into some of your biggest sense of the year and deliverability is super crucial. And so you don't want to have to be dealing with a being flagged as spam or promotional content 100% of the time and everybody's inbox, as you're sort of increasing your holiday sense.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  15:18  

Definitely a friendly reminder, anybody has questions, comments, put them in the chat or the q&a box should be enabled and being able to use so that that definitely makes a lot of sense. And I guess that batch and blast also diminishes the value of your sense to the individual recipients too. So I'm thinking of myself, if I'm a customer of a brand, you're sending me something that you're probably sending to all your other customers, the chance of it actually resonating personally with me is probably pretty slim.

Jordan Brannon  15:50  

No, yeah, that's a correct assumption. I had a brand marketer, we were talking to who was working with us, and he had said that most of their email success seemed to be based on luck. And this is a pretty savvy guy. And so you know, I don't want to sort of say like, he was sort of downplaying, but he felt like a lot of what was happening was still sort of driven by luck. And I, I think the answer is probably true. Yeah, you know, a lot of marketing and great marketing happens to be a bit lucky, you sort of think about some of the best marketing campaigns that we've seen rollout over the past, you know, 20 years. A lot of them, if you got really into it, you sort of took away the veneer of ego. I think most people could acknowledge like, it was a good campaign, but we just didn't know it'd be that successful. And so I think with, with segments, I think, you know, ultimately, what we're really trying to do is we're trying to decrease the odds, so that they're more in your favor, you know, if you can get to a point where one and two of your subscribers open an email, and one and five, click through and one and 20 Convert. Sure, those are odds. But that's luck. That looks pretty good. So yeah, I think there's a bit of a bit of luck to some of that. And I think we're trying to kind of play into that with segmentation.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  16:58  

Absolutely. Awesome. So are there any other common mistakes? You see with segmentation?

Jordan Brannon  17:05  

Yeah, automation is one not using automation, I'm always surprised to see a lot of marketers were really depending on exporting spreadsheets, or just sort of kind of bulk dump API type moves to get customers from one place to another, and to maybe help create some semblance of an omni channel strategy, you know, most reputable ESPs, that people are working with email platforms, email service providers, will have ad network integrations that are pre built, so you can move you know audiences from one to the other, they'll have pretty good tool sets to leverage for cross channel targeting relatively easily. I think maybe another one would be a lack of focus on on customer locations. So maybe there's another sort of miss. So I think a lot of eCommerce brands, when we start working with them, they really think of themselves as national or multinational. They don't have a local emphasis or a local priority, but their customers do. And frankly, it's one of those low hanging sort of data points we have about most of our existing customers. And we can get fairly easily, you know, from a first party source. And so I think localization maybe is another real obvious step in segmentation that's often missed. And even when it's present, we often see brands that really sort of maybe localized and only for the sake of their sand, and often that is more product or their ESP than any of any strategy in their part.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  18:30  

That's super interesting. So can you walk through a couple example segments, or let's say, like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, based on localization? Yeah,

Jordan Brannon  18:41  

easy example, some of our apparel and like fashion brands, who do do quite a bit of work in that space. You know, they're running bigger site wide discounts. So you know, we're doing 40% off site wide, or we have a really big sale category. And so they have a range of garments that are present in their bfcm sales strategy. And segmenting by locale allows them and us to present cold or wet weather clothing to customers, we're actively in that mindset. And we were just talking before this call kicked off, I think you said you had snow on the ground. And so out here in the Northwest, we're very cold today, but it's clear skies. And so obviously, you can get very granular with with weather occurrences but just think as a general strategy, you know, presenting as part of your your, your email communication, cold or wet weather clothing to customers who are actively in that sort of season and warm and mild climate clothing for those who are not. I was talking to a friend who was just got back from Scottsdale, they're expecting Thanksgiving week to be in the high 60s to low 70s. And my 10 day forecast is in the mid 40s. So I've got rain also coming and so you know, I know a lot of our brands who are also talking about how to move inventory, maybe fall wasn't as strong as they wanted spring summer wasn't as strong as they wanted. And so that localization can be not only a great strategy for just the The audience segment, but it can also be a good way to help move some of the inventory. And you know, other ways that you can use them, you can use a localized segment to promote a specific retailer, maybe your eCommerce Store serves a lot of places really well. But because of shipping cost or just other restrictions, maybe you can't ship well to Hawaii, Alaska, you know, other countries. And so you segmentation to promote a specific retailer or partner who carries your products there, you know, brand collaborations are a big deal. And so some of them are more localized. And so thinking about how you can play that up, you know, pop up shops are still very popular. You know, even if you're a retailer, you do have some physical storefronts just change in hours, either for customer service or for your actual store friends, can be really helpful as well, just to be able to localize that content a bit

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  20:51  

more. Super cool tips. So what other as audience segments will you want to ensure a brand has in place right now, on these final hours,

Jordan Brannon  21:03  

you know, I probably would talk through maybe a few others. I would probably say like, I think sort of a holiday shopper type segments and some different names for this. But I would say a holiday shopper type segment is really valuable to develop and have in place for, you know, this time of year especially. And maybe as a subset of that, I would also look at like discount shoppers, so people who are sort of shopping for a particular brand at for a discount. Maybe on that discount sort of shopping thing. Sometimes we hear from brands and say we don't want to be known as a discount company, we just don't want to be perceived that way. And a segment is a really good way to sell discounts. But not everybody necessarily. A couple of premium brands we work with has a fairly consistent sort of sale or clearance type category. And they find that they have people who will only buy from that category. And so that segmentation, even though it's not a big portion of what they do, it's not do big site wide discounts. Having that sort of discount shopper segment is really helpful for them, because it'll get allows them to sort of promote and sell inventory and move things at a discount, without sort of it becoming a big part of how their brand is perceived. You know, for the holiday side of things, take a look at some of your biggest sale events from like the last year. Again, most of us have a couple of key holidays for a particular brand or category and look at who were the shoppers, then, you know, who is sort of not buying it any other part of the year, and start to build those segments, you'll find that there are people who, you know, consistently show up on holidays to shop because they sort of expect a better deal. And so that can be really helpful, you know, as a segment again, just sort of be able to get some momentum here. From I think, actually a lot last call I'd done with Aaron with with BWG, I think we also build out segments based on repeat purchases, or high ticket orders. So they may not be sort of kind of creating almost like a VIP type customer group. Again, that customer may not think of themselves as a VIP, because they don't know how much they spend or how frequently they buy in the context of your broad audience. But to you, they could be there's a lot of gamification strategy there. So if you think about some of our, the big, very successful mobile gaming companies over the last 10 years, one of the things that they do really well is they focus on the whales, the people, you know, that's 20% of their customer base, but they spend 80% of the money, most of us have that type of customer. And so building a segment that really focuses on developing content and strategies that gets in front of your big repeat purchasers can be really, really helpful. And then I think maybe the last one would be sort of a churn risk audience. So we look at this category with our clients where they did buy from you, but they're sort of kind of at the tail end of your of your opportunity to sell it to them again. And so, you know, they're sort of about to move back into sort of the neutral category when they start shopping for your product. And they're not going to think of you first, that churn risk segment can be really helpful, you know, to sort of develop and develop these specific content strategies this time of year. That way, you sort of get them to reengage, stay at the top of the mind in a meaningful way. And holidays are just a really fantastic time for that sort of pre engagement.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  24:39  

And I could see how dialing into any of those could be obviously a really great payoff. But when you look at it are more, some more valuable than others. And when you're on a time crunch, like we literally are what we're talking about right now, you know, how do you focus on them? Who do you feel focus on how do you get it done when you can't do everything?

Jordan Brannon  25:02  

Yeah, I think you could probably think about it as a brand of it, you know, firstly, each brand will probably have a little bit of knowledge about, you know, who their their best shoppers are. And if you don't have a segment for that persona, start there. But you know, I think sort of, generally speaking, I would maybe look at highlighting, you know, people who, who shop during Black Friday, Cyber Monday and this sort of holiday stretch, specifically, it's a fairly easy one, especially if you've been in business for more than a year, to sort of be able to go back and pull up and see who did that last year, you know, who were sort of your shoppers from that prior season. Again, pretty easy segment, you know, again, that we already sort of know that they have the interest in buying with some of these things in mind, may not know a lot about them beyond that. And so it makes it a pretty easy segment, and again, tends to be one that has some good value for it. I think maybe I would also look at people who do shop for bigger discounts. Again, I think this is really a good opportunity for all brands, even premium or luxury brands. Because there is a large portion of the consumer universe, who will only buy with a discount, and they may love your product, they may agree that it's uniquely stylish, it's a great value, but they just will only buy when they can get some money off. Because you know, again, maybe budgeting maybe it's the sense that they need to have some value out of this to get a deal. There are people who I mean, again, I have friends who just they only want to deal like, it doesn't matter if it's a real deal or not, they just they need that deal. And so, again, look for people who are shopping during some of your bigger, bigger sale discounts, people who are buying specifically out of a clearance category or sale category, when it comes up, that can be a really good segment, especially again, if you're in that situation where you're trying to move some clearance inventory from previous seasons. And you don't necessarily want to present yourself as a big discount brand. And then I think the other one again, always really popular is, it was actually I heard a statistic that said only 20% of people shopping during this sort of Black Friday stretch ceremony are actually gift giving, which is sort of funny. So to me, I would have thought have been a bigger number. But basically, you know, one out of every five shoppers is shopping for gifts. Now, again, maybe not as big as you would think. But at the same time, it's still you know, 20% of of sort of consumers out there's not a small number to sort of be thinking about or to ignore. And so, you know, if you have the ability to look for people who are gifting, you know, a lot of eCommerce platforms, you know, have some sort of gift messaging, maybe in the years past, you offered things like gift wrap, maybe you had customers where your normal behavior would be, you know, Tiffany buys it, and then Tiffany ships to Tiffany. But maybe you see Tiffany is buying and shipping to Jordan. And so that's an abnormal thing, you see that sort of increase this time of year, you can kind of create a segment around people who are gift giving. If you're in toys, tools, you know, there's just certain things that do get gifted a lot this time of year, potentially good, good category for you to focus in on it and see some development too. So all of those tend to reengage really easily. They're fairly high value audience segments to have. So that might be some of the ones I would start with.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  28:24  

And I won't ship you any more chickens.

Jordan Brannon  28:27  

Thank you. Thank you, I will ship my chickens. I did put out an offer at the beginning of the call. We have lots of chickens, which means too many eggs we were one of those pandemic people so this is your free BWG promotional offer. I'm not going to give you anything of value other than just fresh eggs. So send Tiffany your address and I will bubble wrap them or something and yeah,

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  28:50  

hopefully they get there one piece but we'll do our best. Yeah. So thinking about the easiest wins. So what are some of those easiest wins with audience segmentation? I guess which ones pay off the most? Yeah.

Jordan Brannon  29:07  

I think you know, kind of looking at, you know, maybe sort of maybe my top suggestion for an easy win. You know, in these may be more generally speaking, than just sort of the BFCM sort of stretch in the holiday stretch. I love to look at audience segments where we're combining behavior and product interest or engagement and product interest. You know, example of that would be Jordan has engaged with your site or your emails you know, more than three times in the last seven days and viewed X product while doing so. But really strong category especially as he sort of gear up many of you are already doing some communication around holiday sales and things like that is looking at who is engaging but not purchasing you know, so are they they are what are they shopping for? What are they waiting for you to announce a new Black Friday discount on what They think you're going to get a lower price point on later. You know, some of those can be really good places to focus and have some segments again, we did a email blasts for customers say like, you know, just to reinforce that the prices aren't getting any lower. And that actually moved a number of customers out of that shopping category to that buying category. Because a lot of them are sort of waiting for the true Black Friday sale like this is not a pre Black Friday sale, it's the real thing. And so we use the acronym, RFP, or RFS, when we're putting segments together like that recency, frequency, and a product that's the P or service is yes, when sort of crafting the messaging, and that does tend to help put you in a place where you're a little closer to some of your hottest potential purchasers. And segments like that are sort of low hanging fruit. Or they just they tell us that a customer is more engaged, they're deeper into the funnel, compared to somebody who maybe is just subscribing for a newsletter, or viewed a social media AD and AS maybe sort of going to shop your site versus your Amazon store versus someplace else versus, you know, a local retailer to define a better deal.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  31:12  

And what's behind that.

Jordan Brannon  31:15  

I think behind that, for me would be probably be product type and brand specific segments. So product type, and brand specific segments are really sort of incredibly valuable to merchants with really all ESPs. You know, and so looking at, you know, when you talk about advanced segments that sometimes require more personalization, which can be difficult for merchants to know where their audience is, and when they have a big event coming up. So there's sort of this concept that I try to really be personalized with my segments can be hard. And so this product type and brand specific segmentation really can work. Because most of us have that purchase history, we have sort of the ability to go back into our orders, and essentially, sort of see, you know, what people have bought, and we can then customize and target our emails and automations based on user interest in specific product types, certain brands, so if you have, you know, sub audiences that you sort of know, you have a big group of categories that you're presenting a, you know, Customer A is consistently buying from category A, Customer B is consistent buying from Category B, you can sort of begin to develop this sort of product plus product type and brand specific segmentation. So, maybe kind of an example to simplify with pet brands. And so, having automations and segments that are tied to a cat, cat owner, or chicken owner, versus somebody who owns a dog or lizard or a bird, can be really, really helpful. Sporting Good companies. So you know, again, soccer versus baseball versus basketball, those can all be really helpful segments to have as well. One of our brands that we're working with is doing some segmentation based on size and fit preferences, which is showing some results, it's really good content to have on your eCommerce pages in general. So again, if you're not doing fashion, there's equivalents for size and fit. But that is a really good segment so that you have a unique segments, sort of personalizing certain products to present to somebody as part of their email campaign that said, like, hey, people, like, who have liked the same products who have had the same fit preferences, also, like these products, and that's been pretty strong as well. And how does that work in practice? Yeah, I mean, so their, their model is pretty easy. And again, it's pretty straightforward. And it's, it's pretty accessible to most eCommerce brands. They're basically pulling a data set that looks at you know, what are sort of the overlapping purchases for certain customers? What are the sizes that are being purchased? What is sort of the fit feedback they already have, from their UGC platform? What's being reviewed well, by other customers with sort of similar overlap, so same size, same fit, feedback, and then using that to sort of create that segment.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  34:06  

So then the segmentation activities that we've talked about, can they all be ported to SMS? William, you recommend doing so if they can? Yeah.

Jordan Brannon  34:18  

Yeah, I think most of them can be applied to SMS audiences, I think, you know, you don't necessarily want us to be able to create like a segment based off of an open rate because we don't get that data. But you can certainly do segments based off of, you know, things like you know, the click through or touch through rate. You know, I think always the message we preach and I think it's fairly commonly known, but probably good to reinforce now, especially this time of year, is you just, you don't get as many SMS messages. Before customer does get annoyed with you. They're sort of a breach of trust. It's a bit more of a personal space when you get a text message. You know, it's not something that still is wide. The US promotional even though again, the number of people who are engaging in purchasing with with SMS is increasing, I think, I think a KB had put out a thing like said 73% of consumers they had pulled for a recent study were had used SMS, you know, as part of a shopping experience. And so, you know, that's increasing. But again, most of us 90% of our messages, 95% of our messages are not shopping their personal. So send last, especially this time of year, don't get sort of tempted to really kind of push push push through SMS necessarily. I think, you know, I think just reading through, so anything else that maybe maybe it's a kind of a case study that you know, why it can be really effective if you do implement some of the same segments reported. We have a client who's in sort of the events and wholesale space. So b2b, which is not necessarily one we always think of as being sort of a big success story for SMS. But we ported over some of their category specific and event specific segments into SMS. And we saw last year's pre Black Friday had something like a, almost a 35 to 40% engagement rate in terms of touch through click through with pre Black Friday in b2b, not necessarily in wedding season. But really, sort of as a clear win, like SMS can go a long ways, especially if you carry some that segmentation data over.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  36:28  

Interesting, especially with the b2b. Like you said, you don't think about that as much. Yep. Cool. So looking at our time, and then knowing you've spent a lot of time on the email, SMS side of things, with the last few minutes of the call, circle back on paid advertising, What recommendations would you have there? Yeah, I

Jordan Brannon  36:50  

think, you know, segmentation is super important part of paid today, you know, most of us are already sort of well aware, or have heard, if it hasn't directly impacted our role, you know, the ad networks have lost, you know, so much of their signal as a result of what's happened with some of the privacy tech and privacy laws and things like that. And so what's happened is there sort of this inverse flip that's occurred, where your ad networks are now much more dependent on you to provide them with a quality audience, then they providing you with a quality audience. And so that doesn't mean that you have to advertise for Facebook. But what it does mean is that you have to provide them with much greater clarity and feedback about what is sort of the desirable audience than maybe what you needed to before. You know, in a bygone era, we had a lot more data, you know, based on third party cookies, and things like that. So we could identify our audiences relatively easy from a big pool that they had. And so now, we really need to flip the script, and we need to take some of our highest performing audiences, and feed that back into our paid advertising platforms. And so that's where really great segmentation has super high value from from from kind of right now this season, sort of strategy with paid. So yeah, I guess if you're, if you're running a paid campaign, so you're more on the pay per click, you know, paid social paid, paid advertising side of things.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  38:25  

And you feel like,

Jordan Brannon  38:28  

you feel like you're not getting campaign performance, the place I would start is to begin to sort of really look at how you're segmenting and what are your segments. And if you're not segmenting, you're definitely losing. You know, I think maybe another one that comes to mind would be remarketing. It's especially dependent on segmentation today. In the past, if you had a good product and good site experience, chances are you could use remarketing to garner a fair bit of business. It was sort of an easy win category for a lot of brands. And today, remarketing really is driven by audience segmentation. And I think it's one of those ones that you really have to kind of, kind of take a look at and say like, Okay, well, what's happening on my remarketing side, they get lazy and just sort of expect that because someone had visited with us previously, they're going to be backed by more. And if you've seen that bigger dip and remarketing performance in the last six to 10 months, I would say, start looking at that segmentation side of it. You know, so we have a couple of minutes, I'd probably say maybe two more. You know, I would say, you know, make sure you're feeding your performance data to ad networks in a way that it excludes costs. So this is one of my favorite segments to run because I just like sort of the the ability to increase profitability as part of my marketing strategy. And when you have cost exclusions, and you're feeding to an ad network, really what is your highest Profit customer segments, rather than the highest revenue segments, you can have a really big win. And, and frankly, you can actually just potentially save your brand some money. We've had some clients where they've had big ticket items, but also big shipping costs as part of that. And so when we're running ads, and those ads are being fed based off of highest dollar value purchase, rather than highest profit purchase, that actually could be a bigger expenditure. And so you could be, you know, shipping a lawn mower, all over the country when the margins are much thinner than if we were shipping, you know, something else. That, again, has just a higher profit margin. And maybe last but not least, I think I'd probably say, you know, most importantly, you know, most of the segments that we've talked about already today can be converted into a paid ad audience. So all of those things, we sort of touched on holiday shoppers, discounts, gift givers, churn, risk customers, you know, high engagement, but not purchasing, you know, a lot of those can be converted into a paid audience segment. So if you find a winner in one area, so you do the email side of things, share that with your paid team with your paid agency, chances are, you'll be able to replicate that elsewhere. And so you can create some economies of scale. You know, I think, maybe a little bit of a just a personal comment on some of that is I think, sometimes they hear from, you know, marketers or marketing influencers, that audiences are super differentiated based on channel. And I don't think I've ever seen a really good study to back that up. Most of the time, what I have seen sort of substantiated in data is that one of the things that pandemic has done is it sort of taught audiences to experience more of what's online and what more with what's available digitally. And so a customer can exist in Tik Tok and Instagram and in Google and and Facebook and in retail, and you know, all of these different spots. And so most of the time, they're just consuming different types of content. You know, what may be more entertainment, one may be more discovery, one may be more thing. And so, you know, within those things, if a segment has high success for you in one group, or one, one channel, don't be afraid to sort of try to move them across to a different channel or communicate with them a different channel, sometimes it's just a great way to avoid exhausting them. Just make sure that you are tailoring that content experience that you're presenting for that channel, you'll find that you keep sort of really high engagement. And again, you can get those extra sales this holiday season as you're kind of crossing those segments across different channels.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  42:45  

Very cool. Wow, is a lot to take in. But as always, like fantastic Intel greatly appreciated. We have a couple of minutes left, if anybody wants to put anything into the q&a question wise, feel free to do so. But yeah, we're in the final stretch here. So may also be given people a few minutes back to which they probably greatly appreciated so many thanks to you, Jordan. And we definitely encourage a follow up conversation with the Coalition Technologies and we'd love to have a conversation with you feel free to send me an email to And with that, it's a wrap. Happy Holidays, y'all. Good luck with the sales. Go get them we're gonna see on the next event soon. Take care of stay safe. 

Jordan Brannon  43:33  

And let me know if you need eggs. And if you need eggs, we got you. Yep. All right.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  43:38  

Take care. Thank you.

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