Whether you call it Big Data or Deep Data, combined with little data, it’s the name of the game for online publishers. But, data is only data, unless you do something with it. That’s why we start by using it to segment our audiences.
Segmentation: Simply put, segmentation is the act of dividing your audience into groups, based on certain criteria. The members of each group must have at least one quality in common with other members of the group—and that is what sets them apart from the other groups.
Originally, segmentation was about converting visitors to customers. However, in the context of digital publishing, it’s no longer just about conversion, it’s also about retention. Segmentation involves making sure members of each group have several factors in common—because it is really about targeting and the more targeted your content, the more likely you are to engage your audience and that engagement means revenue.
Really, it comes down to relevancy or contextual awareness. Your audience has likely evolved to expect a personalized experience on your website from their point of entry all the way through to a highly-customized purchasing experience. And, they’ll expect something even better on the return trip.
Where do you start? It’s important to remember these basic but very important categories to begin with.
Psychographics: this is about personality, attitudes, values, interests and lifestyles.
Media and Mediums
However, for a publisher, there are certain categories that will help you hone in on your audience in a way that helps create a deeper experience. Of course, other categories that are even more specific to the audience you serve will emerge and inform you. But start with these:
Content Preferences: Do they often view articles by a certain writer or on specific topics? Do they prefer weekly or monthly newsletters?
Purchases: What are they purchasing? Are they focused on products or services? Are they buying what is offered around a specific area of expertise? How often are they purchasing?
Subscriptions: Obviously these tie to purchases, but they are more specific. Are they going for free or paid subscriptions? What method of delivery? How frequent? Are they really engaged with their subscriptions? Or are they only sometimes accessing what the subscription offers?
Site Behavior: What are they reading? How much time are they spending? What offers and features do they respond to or interact with?
Let’s look at why segmentation translates to revenue:
Sometimes we can get caught up in all the numbers and wonder why we are doing it, but then, when we step back and remind ourselves, we realize it’s about the other numbers—those with the $ in front.
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