Every day, we're seeing new innovations introduced in the digital marketing space. The next significant shift to come in 2016 will be fresh segmentation and targeting methods. With social intelligence and content viewing indicators currently used as prime tools, brands will no longer target people only based on their age, gender, location, socioeconomic status, and social behavior.
The new form of segmentation and targeting will be based on a deeper parameter that is derived from the prospect's passion level.
According to this new customer typology approach, there are four types of potential customers to target:
- Passionate: people that are highly passionate about a specific category/vertical -- not necessarily a specific brand within the category (for example: fashion, automobile, travel, etc.)
- Conventional: they may be interested right now in specific products or services, but it's more like a concrete need in a specific time period.
- Future prospects: they may be a category's future customers.
- Out-of-range: they are not relevant to this category.
According to this targeting approach, marketers should focus only of the first passionate segment if they want tangible ROI from their marketing investment.
Who these people are, and why they matter
They are highly engaged with a category's related content and products, doing their own research before any purchase decision; they are using multiple sources for information to inform their purchase decisions. Additionally, these people often influence others. They probably will be repeat customers and are relatively early adopters and have a significant share of voice.
Above and beyond that which has already been noted, these users are the ultimate content consumers of the new stage -- the "age of discovery" -- in which people don't necessarily look for content on destination sites or by using search engines, but instead pull content "on the fly" during casual browsing and engagement on social networks.
Those that fall into the passionate segment will try new products. They are the best audience for up-sell, and they are the most loyal buyers. They will consume your content, join your fan pages, and be happy to hear about special opportunities. They will be your brand ambassadors, sharing content and products to their networks. They will be your earned media.
How to identify your passionate segment
You can identify this segment by tracking search engine usage, by using social intelligence, and by identifying their content viewing patterns -- mainly by tracking their content casual viewerships. They are the ultimate consumers of syndicated content and advertising.
2016 is going to start the age of passionate segmentation as a prime targeting and tracking method. From this point forward, marketers will have to learn how to use social networks, search engines and content syndication technologies to better track & attract their most important target audience -- the passionate segment.
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