What Is List Segmentation?

In a nutshell, list segmentation is when you break your list into smaller, more-targeted segments. And the reason you do that is because it allows you to send targeted content and ads, which in turn boosts your conversion rate.

Let me give you an example…

Let’s suppose you have a list of folks who are interested in traffic generation. You can segment your list according to which topics your list members are most interested in, such as:

  • SEO
  • Social media marketing
  • Blogging
  • Joint venture marketing
  • Paid advertising

… And so on.

Now let’s suppose you want to promote something about social media marketing to your list. You can certainly send an announcement to your entire list. However, you can craft a special promo email to the social media segment of your list, since you know those folks are especially interested in the topic.

For example, your email might specifically say things such as, “You’re interested in social media marketing, but maybe you’re not getting the results you wanted…” This type of highly targeted message will resonate with the audience and result in higher response rates.

Another way to segment your list is by behavior. For example, if someone doesn’t open the last email you sent, you can send them another email. Or if someone clicked on the link in your last email, you can add them to another segment of your list and/or send them a follow up email.

HINT: Many email service providers provide automation tools, which lets you do this segmenting automatically. For example, you can set up an automation rule to subscribe someone to another segment of your list if they click on a link or take some other action.

So now you have a good idea of what segmenting is, and how it can boost your conversion rates and help you connect with your audience. Now let’s take a look at specific ways to segment your list:

  • Separate your prospect and customers lists. This one is obvious, but it’s the first step in creating higher response rates.
  • Segment your prospect list according to lead magnets. In other words, create different segments according to whichever lead magnet your prospect requests. Indeed, you may create different lead magnets for the express purpose of segmenting your list.

For example: if you have bodybuilding list, you might create four lead magnets based on nutrition, exercise, motivation and competitions.

  • Segment your customer list according to products. In other words, when someone buys a product, they should be put on a new segment of your list. If someone buys three products from you, they’ll be on three segments of your list.
  • Segment your list according to behavior. For example, if someone opens an email, you might send them a specific follow up. If they don’t open an email, you’d send them a different kind of follow up. Same goes if they click a link or don’t click a link.
  • Segment according to traffic source. So if someone reaches your lead page through your marketing partners, segment them. If someone arrives via the search engines, segment them. If someone comes from paid advertising, segment them.

TIP: This comes in particularly handy when you segment by marketing partners. That way you can say something like, “Our mutual friend John Smith is coming out with a new product soon…”


Another example is if someone comes through social media, such as Facebook. You can create a better connection by saying something such as, “Did you see my marketing video on Facebook yesterday? If not, you’ll really want to check it out here…”

    • Segment according to other activities. These activities may include things such as participating in a contest or listening in on a free webinar.


Segmenting your list is just one way to connect better with your audience and create higher response rates and more profits from your list.

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