How to Segment Your Email Lists

What is Segmentation and Why Use It?

Email list segmentation is a technique that email marketers use to send highly targeted emails by dividing their list up into smaller groups, or “segments.” The goal of segmentation is to provide more relevant content to your email recipients.

You want your marketing campaign to be as precise as possible so the right message can hit the right people at exactly the right time. For this, email segmentation is an absolute must.

How to Segment Your Email Lists

In BigMailer, you can segment your campaigns on:

  1. Your custom fields. For example, last order date or subscription status.
  2. Pre-defined fields like DateAdded and Email, specifically email domain (e.g. gmail.com or yahoo.com).
  3. Campaign engagement – sends, opens, clicks on a specific campaign or any campaigns in a given time period.

Here are some examples of segmentation rules you can use in BigMailer with screenshots:

DateAdded – this value is added when a contact is added to BigMailer:

Campaign engagement – sent/not a specific campaign:

Campaign engagement – opens on a specific campaign or any in a given time period:

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Campaign engagement – clicks on a specific campaign or any in a given time period:

​You can combine your inline conditions and your pre-defined segments with either ANY or ALL rule.

how to segment your list

If you’re reading this, that means you’re serious about creating the most targeted email campaigns possible. And we are here to help.

Before you’re able to segment your audience, you need to get their emails and collect relevant data. Using BigMailer webforms to collect your subscriber data gives you a few advantages. For example, we automatically capture your user’s IP address (but we don’t save or store it) and convert it to non-PII data points (country, state, city, zip code, and latitude and longitude), which allows you to target your audience by location.

Need ideas on how to leverage segmentation? Check out this article – 50 ways to segment your list from OptinMonster.

Want to learn more about email marketing? Head over to our email marketing automation or email deliverability guides.

Happy email marketing!

How to Setup an Automation (Drip) Campaign

There are many terms used by marketers to describe automated emails – marketing automation, auto-responders, drip emails, email sequences, and more. Whatever you call your automated emails, BigMailer supports them.

An Automation campaign in BigMailer can be a single email (e.g. a signup confirmation or welcome) or a sequence of emails, that are typically triggered based on something happening to the contact (e.g. subscriber) record or an action performed. In addition to action, an automated email can be triggered with a time delay in hours, days, or weeks, or have no delay.

After the Automation campaign is triggered with the 1st email the future steps in the sequence can be scheduled in 2 ways:

  1. Relative to the first email, e.g. X days after the same trigger as the 1st email. For example, you can send a welcome email immediately after someone signs up for your newsletter or creates an account, then send weekly emails after 7, 14, 21 days, etc.
  2. Relative to previous step and/or action taken, e.g. X days after a previous email in the sequence is sent or after a contact opens or clicks on the previous email.

Ready to get started? Here are the steps to setup your Automation campaign.

  1. Log into your BigMailer account and select a brand you want to create a campaign under. Don’t have a BigMailer account? Try out BigMailer with a free account – all accounts start on a Free plan, no credit card required.
  2. Click on Campaigns tab in the site header, then on “Create Campaign” button.
  3. Click on “Create” under the Automation section.

Campaign types in BigMailer. Coming soon: RSS to email.

Once on the Campaign page you need to give your Automation campaign a name, click on small “rename” tag next to name.

Automation Campaign name

Click on “Add Email” to create your first email step, then click on “Edit” links to define each element of an email – trigger, message type, and segment (optional).

BigMailer Automation Campaign Example

BigMailer Automation Campaign Example – Newsletter Welcome

The most typical trigger for a 1st or only step in an Automation campaign is subscriber record being added to a specific list. Tip: Create a List named Test and always test your automation campaigns against that list before finalizing it against customer list.

There are several ways to add contacts to a list:

  1. Manual import of a csv file.
  2. A web form that sends data to that list.
  3. An API call (e.g. to create a contact when someone makes a purchase).
  4. A Zapier integration (when someone performs an action on a 3rd party platform a record of contact is created at BigMailer)

How to Use Segments in Addition to Triggers

In BigMailer, in addition to triggers available, you can also narrow down your target audience for a given email via custom defined segment. You can use segments to:

  1. Only send an automated email to customers based on their aggregate engagement with prior campaigns.
  2. Send an automated email only if a certain field in customer record has a value, e.g. LastPurchase > 30 days.
  3. Split a certain step in a sequence into multiple versions to customize email content based on certain customer attributes, like interest, gender, or certain interaction with your product, for example offerRedeemed or similar.

Examples of how to use segmentation in addition to triggers:

  1. Don’t send this email/sequence to subscriber based on engagement with other email campaigns or on a certain field value, that can be updated as a result of an action taken with your website or product.
  2. Send this email IF the value of a certain field is X to send custom content to different segments (a given step can have several versions created for each segment.

Automation Campaign Analytics

Automation campaigns have the same analytics as bulk campaigns, once they are activated and emails are sent. You can see engagement metrics like open and click rates, as well as unsubscribes, bounces, and complaints.

The stats for Automation campaign do NOT reset when an email is modified or moved around in a sequence. So if you want to track performance of a single step in a sequence you may want to pause the step and create a new version to replace it so you can compare engagement stats before/after the changes made.

Examples of Automation Campaigns

1. A single welcome email sent when a new subscriber is added to the list, perhaps with links to best content or info on how often new content will be emailed.

2. A welcome sequence sent X days after signup with valuable content, matching subscriber’s interests.

Email Marketing Automation Example - Newsletter Signup

Email Marketing Automation Example in BigMailer – Newsletter Signup

3. A product/service on-boarding email sequence with tips on using a product or advice from experts. This type of sequence can start with an event outside BigMailer and contact record is pushed to BigMailer via an integration.

Email Marketing Automation Example - User On-boarding

Email Marketing Automation Example in BigMailer – User On-boarding

4. An email or a sequence triggered by a customer interaction with a website or product. For example, if a subscriber visits a specific article they are tagged as interested in a given topic and sent relevant content or promotional emails. To set this up you have to add code to your website to fire an API call to BigMailer to either a) update your customer record with info on the action or interest or b) add that customer to a new List which can trigger an Automation campaign.

Ready to get started? Click on Campaigns tab in the site header, then on “Create Campaign” button and select “Automation” campaign from the list. Don’t have a BigMailer account? Try out BigMailer with a free account.

Need assistance with your Automation Campaign? Reach out via chat icon once you log in, help is available 7 days a week.

 

How to Create a Zapier Integration

Using a Zapier integration you can connect BigMailer to hundreds of other platforms and applications. You can sync up your customer records with a CRM or another ESP, or add records to BigMailer when you acquire subscribers or customers in other platforms.

Below is a list of actions and example scenarios that can be setup.

IF [something happens elsewhere] > Add a contact to BigMailer brand

Examples:

IF a new response is collected via Google Forms add a contact into List [some-name] in BigMailer

IF a new row added to Google Spreadsheet add a contact into List [some-name] in BigMailer

IF a new contact is added in [some other ESP] also add a contact into List [some-name] in BigMailer

IF a new customer/sale/order is added in [some platform] add a contact into List [some-name] in BigMailer

IF a contact is added in BigMailer > DO [this action somewhere else].

Examples:

IF a new contact is added to List [Member] in BigMailer also add a record in [some platform].

IF a new contact is added to List [Paying Customer] in BigMailer send a message via [Gmail/Slack/other].

How to Create a New Zap with BigMailer

Log into Zapier with your account, then go to this page and click on “Accept Invitation & Build a Zap”.

When you choose an app in either step 1 or 2, search for “bigmailer” (no space) then select a BigMailer app listed.

Zapier: find BigMailer app

Zapier: find BigMailer app

Once you select the action, you will be asked for an API key to complete the step and a link to the page to copy API key will be provided.

Zapier: authorize BigMailer with API Key

Zapier: authorize BigMailer with API Key

Need an action not listed? Reach out to us via chat to request it.