Segmenting with Marketing Cloud

An eBook to master segmentation, to create more personalized campaigns in SFMC.

You’ve already mastered segmentation in your everyday life. Your relationships with your family, friends, and colleagues are proof of this.


Because you know what everyone around you likes and dislikes (most of the time, at least).  With this knowledge, you segment their behaviors, needs, lifestyles, and hobbies to help keep them happy.

If your best friend is a fitness freak, you might buy her an annual fitness membership on her birthday. You never ask your colleague to go out on Thursday nights because you know he has an Italian class after work. Knowing his penchant for tangy treats, you bring your son sour jellies. For your daughter, a set of crayons because she loves drawing. You’ll never buy a yellow dress for your wife because yellow apparently makes her look pale.

So what do you do? You know how to make those around you happy. You know how to avoid bad decisions in their regard. And you spend your resources where you know they’re worth it.

If you can deliver your message at the right time, you can get better in your relationships. It’s the same with your customers. If you know what they want, you can get better results and higher ROIs. With this eBook, you’ll learn how to approach your customers better, using Salesforce Marketing Cloud. With the latest segmentation strategies and tips,you’ll start with the basics, and gradually learn best practices.

What is audience segmentation, and why is it important?

Your audience is a pool of diverse characters and personas. They’re scattered all over the world and have different lifestyles, needs, interests, and problems. Most of the time, sending a single message to all of them will not resonate. The result of this ‘scatter gun’ approach will be poor marketing metrics for your business.

Here’s an example to help you understand why audience segmentation is important: You’re a clothing brand, and you have a bi-weekly newsletter about urban style and your new collections. A portion of your customers have signed up for the newsletter. They’re happy to receive your emails and the opening rates are quite high. However, you’re sending the newsletter to everyone, which may include customers with no interest in a particular collection or item. Moreover, there’s a group of customers on your mailing list who only signed up for a 20% discount code. So what are the probable outcomes here? Your open rates could drop by 20%, or even worse, you might see 9% of your audience flag the mail as spam. As a result, you’ll lose your hard-earned leads. It’ll undermine your conversions and email reputation.

An alternative to this is to split your audience into two groups.

Segmentation of audience in Salesforce Marketing Cloud done easy with DESelect

Image source: Trailhead

The smarter way to send your messages is to segment your audience. To split your main list(s) into multiple smaller segments that fit specific criteria. What is audience segmentation, and why is it important? Then send your newsletter to your loyal readers. And send only discounts and promotional emails to the other audience. That’s it. Yes, this is a simple example. But it can be that easy to get better results!
How can customer segmentation in SFMC help you increase your revenue? 3 scenarios

To see the benefits of segmentation more clearly, we wrote three scenarios for three different industries. We chose the Retail, Education and Insurance industries because these are amongst the biggest user-bases of Salesforce Marketing Cloud. Are you in another industry and want to get inspired with some scenarios for your segmentation strategy? We would love to hear from you and share our ideas! Here, the goal is to practice what we learned in the previous chapters and consolidate all the information in the SFMC environment.

  • What is a data model?
  • Identifying and preparing the data for Salesforce Marketing Cloud
  • How to define your data model in Salesforce Marketing Cloud
  • How to leverage data in the studios and builders of Salesforce Marketing Cloud

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