How To Segment Your Marketing Plan
Brace yourself, this could be a long article. That’s what I told myself before I began to write this blog article because explaining segmentation can be a little confusing. And explaining how to segment your marketing plan can also be a little confusing. But they are both so necessary. Which means this article is necessary, so you better continue reading.
What is segmentation?
Segmentation is defining your marketing opportunities. This should be your first step in your marketing plan. But let’s be honest, it wasn’t. We’re already moving into the second quarter of the year, your marketing plan is in full swing, and it’s unlikely you started with segmentation. So instead, I’m going to explain how to segment your current marketing plan. And also why you need to.
So going back to the basics, segmentation is defining and understanding your marketing opportunities. This is an umbrella concept that outlines every single marketing opportunity you could take advantage of to reach your target audience (or target market). If you are already implementing a marketing strategy, then instead you only need to list the marketing opportunities you are currently taking advantage of and also any that you would like to.
Now you have to produce target markets
So we already agreed you have defined your target markets. For those who haven’t, this is your next step. Actually, even if you have, you better take a second look. Now that you can a clear understanding of your marketing opportunities, where does your target market fit into those opportunities/
Let me give you an example. If one of my target audiences are small business owners, where does that target audience fall in my list of marketing opportunities? Would it be best to communicate to them through social media, billboards, google ads, etc? What you are trying to do is assign your target audience to a marketing opportunity.
Now you can segment your marketing plan
If you have done the above steps then you have a list of marketing opportunities and a list of target audiences that are assigned to each opportunity. Feel free to mix, match and combine, there are no boxes here. But since you are already implementing a marketing plan you can highlight the opportunities you are already taking advantage of and the audiences you are already reaching. Here is where you apply this segmentation to your marketing plan.
Evaluate your current marketing plan and confirm the marketing you are implementing are reaching your goals. How can you segment this further? Are your messages written for the right audience? Do you need to create more than one message for one platform?
Here is another example to offer more clarity:
|Segment||Target Audience||Marketing Message||Result|
|Social media||Small business owners and start-ups||One message for each audience||If I’m already doing this – is it working?|
|Google Ads||Medium sized business owners||Defined message for this audience|
As you can see from the table above, I have my marketing opportunities, my target audience, I would have my marketing message and then of course the last column is for you to evaluate the results. Now you’re thinking, who has time for this? If you’re a business owner then you probably don’t and that’s why you need to hire Nixx Media. However, if you’re interested in getting a return on your marketing investment, I highly suggest you make the time (or hire us) to segment your marketing plan and make sure you are at least making back the money you are investing. At least.