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Abbie's Column : Email Marketing

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Netflix Marketing Lesson for Emailers

By Abbie Drew
Jan 23, 2015

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The best feature of Netflix is their recommendation tool.
It is spot on for suggesting specific shows and movies
based on my past viewing.

Netflix has built an algorithm that delivers personal and
relevant information for every customer. Talk about
customer service.

By delivering their personal recommendation, Netflix has
created demand for online video streaming. Online video
streaming has increased 60% year-over-year (YoY) to 10 hours
45 mins per month reports Nielsen.

Netflix has mastered the art of delivering relevant content by
tracking what their subscribers watch and asking for their
subscribers' input.

Email marketers should take note!

You too can deliver relevant content to your subscribers.
Sending relevant content simply means sending the right
content to the right person at the right time.

The more relevant your content, the more sales you'll make.

Just consider the billions of hours of streamed video Netflix
has delivered, because of their relevant recommendations

How can you be like Netflix and deliver more relevant content?

You don't need advanced technological algorithms.

You simply need to Segment!

Smaller list segments allow you to send more relevant and
interesting content to your subscribers.

The 2014 DMA's National Client Email Report, notes that
"segmented email campaigns accounted for 60% of all email

Let's review 5 list segmentation ideas you can use:

1. Demographics

Ask your subscribers for specific information about themselves.

1. Gender
2. Age (or birth year)
3. Job title
4. Company size
5. Industry
6. Interests
7. Geography
8. Birthday

Netflix does request that subscribers rate what they watch.
You too can ask subscribers for information.

Try using a 2 part sign-up form and request further details
about subscribers after the initial sign-up. You can also have
a preference center and ask subscribers to provide you with
more information.

Another option is to use a list augmentation service and
purchase the demographic data a vendor has already collected
about most every email address. You upload your email list
and they fill in the demographic data for you. Check out

With demographic details you can segment out groups and
personalize your emails. Sending offers geared to specific
geographic areas, for example, is highly effective.

Similarly sending out birthday greetings with a special offer
generates high response rates.

2. Triggers

Studies show again and again that triggered email campaigns
perform five times better than traditional broadcast campaigns.
Track the behavior of your subscribers and send relevant email

Track Email Campaign Response:

* Which emails does a subscriber open and/or click on?

Send more emails relevant to that subject matter.

* Which emails does a subscriber NOT open and/or click on?

Avoid sending further email containing that material.

* Which type of offer does a subscriber respond to most often?

Based upon the interests of your subscriber send additional
targeted emails.

Thus a subscriber who responds to content downloads but not
coupons, should be sent more content offers. A subscriber
who responds to % off deals should be sent more % off sales.

Track Web Site Interactions:

* Did a person visit your website? What offers did he view?

Have email sign-up forms for more information about each
specific product you sell. A person who signs-up for more
details about a specific product / service on your site should be
sent content relevant to that item.

* Did a person comment on your blog? Share your post on Social Media?

A subscriber who interacts with your business, should be
emailed and thanked. Advocates for your brand should be
treated with special emails. Provide special discounts to them,
offer them early releases on your offerings and send them
exclusive content.

Your brand advocates will be influential in the marketplace
so segment them into a specific group. Send them emails that
show them the respect and appreciation they deserve.

3. Customers

Any individual who has purchased from you should be placed
in a "special" customer list segment. Customers are your
goldmine and you should treat them with care.

If you sell multiple products have a list for each type of customer.

Also note, which customers are one-time buyers vs. repeat buyers.

Loyal customers require different messages than those who
just tried out your product / service. Let repeat customers
know how important they are to your business.

4. Cart Abandoners

Shopping cart abandonment can be as high as 60%.

Don't let these individuals disappear forever without sending
them a gentle email reminder to return to your site and
complete their purchases. You can even try a series of
automated follow-ups to get these prospects to return.

Segmenting out cart abandoners and sending them a message
has been noted as the single highest ROI email.

5. In-actives

Who is MIA on your list?

Take the non-openers and non-clickers and re-send your
messages to them. Send to them on different days and send
them messages with different subject lines.

Play around with your emailings to the non-openers and try to
get them to act. You'll find some of those in-active subscribers
will become active again with your attention.

Those who remain in-active for months, simply remove from
your list.


List segmentation may sound difficult at first. Rather than
become overwhelmed - start by creating just one segment and
see if you have success. Even the most minor list segmentation
can make your email more relevant and improve your overall

Abbie Drew
DEMC Editor

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