Have you ever received a notification from your mobile phone provider to add family members to your plan—even though you’re single? Or to upgrade your phone when you just got the latest iPhone last month?

It grates the nerves a little, doesn’t it? Discovering that a company doesn’t care enough to personalize your experience with them is enough to make anyone start shopping around. This type of generic marketing is insensitive and a total turn-off.

Not to mention, it’s a waste of perfectly good leads. Prospect list building is hard enough, and if you’re still sending broad, generalized messages to your entire list, then you’re alienating a large percentage of them.

Even if you can close a few new clients with this approach, why not make things easier on your sales team? (Or on yourself, if you are your sales team!)

In a competitive market where you can’t afford wasted sales efforts, any step you can take to gain an edge over rival companies is a welcome one. This is where prospect segmentation comes into play.

What Is Prospect Segmentation?

Segmenting your prospects involves breaking your lead list into smaller, more targeted groups.

Your marketing strategy will largely influence how you determine these groups. But, typically, in B2B sales, customer segmentation is based on shared characteristics, such as job title, industry, and company size.

Clients want to feel like you understand their individual needs and wants. And it starts with personalization throughout your entire sales funnel.

For example, you might have a specific sales pitch that works well on engineers but not pharmaceutical reps. Or, let’s say you have a group of CEOs versus HR managers. These professionals will respond to a different outreach style, and personalizing how you converse with them will increase your chances of making a connection.

Dividing your prospects into smaller groups based on specific criteria can also help to identify more profitable segments. This in turn will help your sales team allocate their sales efforts more effectively, saving time and money in the long run.

Why is Prospect Segmentation Important?

Segmentation aims to create a personalized experience for prospects and help grow your business.

Why is Prospect Segmentation Important?

Without segmentation, you send the same generic message to everyone—like the tone-deaf phone provider in our earlier example. But when you know exactly who you’re talking to and where they are in your sales funnel, the interaction is more meaningful.

Instead of grating nerves, your leads will be more receptive to what you have to say. You’ll experience higher open rates and click-through rates in your email campaigns. And you may even learn through the segmentation process which leads are more likely to convert via email marketing, cold calling, or another channel like a downloadable ebook.

Prospect segmentation will also help streamline your sales process as you’ll better understand how likely a lead list is to convert. With this knowledge, you can hyper-focus your sales efforts and experience higher conversions.  

How to Segment Your Prospects

Ultimately, your goal with segmentation is to talk to the right person with the right message at the right time. It’s about maximizing time, reducing email unsubscribes, and gaining new customers.

If you rely on email marketing to communicate with your leads, using a simple customer relationship management software (CRM) like MailChimp or SalesForce will make it easier. Even if you and your sales team plan to include cold calling in your outreach, segmenting your leads first will speed up the process by allowing you to batch similar leads together and ensuring every sales rep has a good understanding of who they’re speaking with.

The possibilities for prospect segmentation are endless, and there’s no one right way to do it. Much of how you choose to approach it will boil down to the size of your company, how complicated your sales funnel is, and the resources available.

For example, a small business will have fewer segments than a large one, simply because they don’t have the time or resources to gather as much data. Plus, SMBs tend to have more niche audiences than household brands. Additionally, B2B marketing and sales teams will approach segmentation differently than B2C.

Let’s look at some of the most common types of B2B customer segmentation.

types of market segmentation

Buyer Persona

A buyer persona provides a peek into the inner desires of your ideal prospects. It’s essentially a representation of your most profitable leads and can help your sales team connect to your future customers during the lead generation process.

Your buyer personas can also offer insights about how best to target qualified prospects—especially when designing your strategy for inbound and outbound prospecting.

Firmographics

To create even more targeted messaging, B2B sales teams can break down each buyer persona further using firmographics—the B2B equivalent of demographics.

Relevant firmographic data might include:

  • Industry: B2B prospects often have strong preferences for communication styles and methods, which can vary widely between industries. Even among companies of similar sizes and locations, there can be vast differences in the type of messaging that is most likely to hit home. Segmenting your prospects by industry makes it easier to create sales campaigns that resonate.
  • Company Size: An organization’s size will often determine who the decision-maker is. The CEO of a large company with multiple locations might be untouchable. At the same time, the decision-maker might be the owner/operator of a small business.
  • Location: Create different segments based on time zones, states, or international satellite offices.
  • Revenue: There’s no better way to understand the health of a company than through sales and revenue. This information can help you develop a sales strategy around both current and long-term needs.
  • Growth Trends: Growth metrics offer valuable information on the economics of a company. Are they growing, shrinking, or remaining stable?

Behavioral Attribution

When you know which channel a lead came through and understand their needs, you can target them with relevant messaging based on actions they’ve already taken.

For example, did a prospect hit a landing page and download a lead magnet? Or did they join a webinar, sign up for a free trial of a SaaS platform, or connect with you on LinkedIn?

Understanding how leads engage and interact with your sales funnel will offer valuable information for the follow-up.

Psychographics

Psychographics is the only type of segmentation data that relies less on stats and more on personality traits.

If behavioral attributions tell you how prospects interact with your company, psychographics tell you why. When you consider a prospect’s emotions and feelings, you get a better understanding of what informs their actions and interactions with your brand.

You can use psychographic data to take personalization to the next level, adopting a tone and communication style that aligns with the values and opinions of your target audience.

Grow Your Business With Segmentation

Creating a personalized experience for your prospect will help your business grow. In fact, a study from Bain & Company showed that customer segmentation improved conversions by 81%.

Your prospects are all different, with distinct wants and needs. And when your sales team has the data they need to build and design individualized messaging, you’ll experience a more profitable ROI.

Not only will accurate data allow you to attract and pursue the right leads, but you’ll also know when to drop a lead and move on. However, your success with prospect segmentation begins with a valuable lead list.

Build a Quality List, Fast

While segmentation benefits your bottom line, it all means nothing if you don’t have a high-quality lead list.

Accurate data is a must-have for creating engaging and targeted messaging. Creating and promoting content targeted at the wrong people is a colossal waste of resources. Your sales team will have a more challenging time closing new clients, and you’ll lose money.

But finding the right leads is time-consuming and, frankly, exhausting. It’s easy to spend hours scouring the internet for information on new prospects and still come up empty-handed. The good news is that an affordable lead generation tool can help you collect accurate data within minutes.

Segment Your List With Datanyze

Datanyze is an easy-to-use (and install) Chrome extension that allows you to mine information and connect with B2B prospects. It will save your sales team hours of data collection and you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.

With Datanyze, you can find accurate contact info on decision-makers in a flash and grow your list in record time. Datanyze scours websites and LinkedIn to offer real-time contact information like email addresses, direct dial numbers, and mobile numbers—without ever leaving your browser.

Before exporting your hot new lead list to your CRM, you can use tagging to segment leads and design your ultimate sales and marketing strategy. Whether you have a small, one-person operation or a large sales team, Datanyze can help your business grow.

Get started with Datanyze today to find out how you can boost your sales efforts with high-quality segmented customer data.