Segments are subsets of your entire visitor population that share certain characteristics (properties or logged activities, for instance). Segmenting an audience is one of the most common marketing techniques based on the assumption that, statistically, people sharing the same psychographic or behavioral attributes tend to react in the same way to given stimulations. As visitors in the same segment are presumed to share the same behavior, building segments allows marketers to create quick and efficient targeted personalization experiences.
1. To access segments management page
- Click on profiling tools in the left menu.
- Click on Segments.
2. Segment definition
A segment is defined by a name, a description and an arbitrary number of conditions linked together by logical operators.
3. Segments page
The segments page displays a paginated list of existing segments.
For each segment declared, is displayed its name, the number of matching profiles (red square), the fact that the segment is shared on the platform or not, the segment description (if filled) and 3 action buttons
Edit the segment details (name, description and conditions).
View the list of profiles currently in that segment.
Delete a segment
4. Creating a segment
To create a segment, follow this procedure:
- Click on the Segment entry in the left menu.
- Click on the top right menu.
- Choose Create new segment
- Enter a meaningful name for your segment (mandatory)
- Enter a meaningful description for your segment
At this stage the segment is declared but has no conditions define which profiles match. The second stage is then to add conditions.
5. Building segment conditions
Segments are defined using the Condition Builder which is explained in details in the chapter Concepts. A segment is actually a rule containing one or more conditions that can be evaluated (or resolved) and that are linked together by logical operators.
If a visitor matches the conditions defined for a given segment, then s/he belongs to that segment. A user cannot be assigned manually to a segment if s/he doesnt match the conditions defined in the rule. The evaluation is done in real time by Marketing Factory, a soon as a segment is created or updated. Also, as soon as a profile is modified, Marketing Factory evaluates if the segment matches one or several segments.
To create the rule attached to you segment, just click on New Condition, then proceed as explained in Chapter 2.
Conditions have been structured into five types:
- Dynamic Segment
- Static list
- Scoring plan
- Profile property
- Engaged in campaign
- Goal match
- Number of pages viewed
- Profile past event
Note that as you add conditions in your rule, Marketing Factory provides a very convenient count about the number of profiles / visitors matching.
This information is provided for the whole rule (1204 in the above example) and for each unitary condition (11448 and 1718 in the above example).
The above example can be read as the following: there are 11448 profiles that are 20 or older, 1718 tat are younger than 30 and 1204 that are between those two limits.
The reason why this count is useful is that it enable marketers to build unnecessary small segments (that match only a few profiles) and/or remove conditions for which the number of profiles is ridiculously low.
6. Using segments as conditions for other segments
Marketing Factory is a very agile system that allows you to use previously created segments as conditions to define a new segment. This is highly convenient to manage your segments efficiently and can save a lot of time in administrative tasks.
6.1 Segment Union
You can create a segment that will re-group several other segments using the OR operator between each of them. Logically, the resulting segment is the addition of all those segments.
For example: East Asia segment = User is from segment China OR segment Taiwan OR segment Japan OR segment South Korea.
All visitors that belong to one of the segments China, Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea will belong to the East-Asia segment.
6.2 Segments intersection
In the same way, you can use several segments as conditions with an AND operator to target a segment intersection.
For example: East Asian Students = East-Asia segment AND Students segment
Only visitors who are in both segments at the same time will be part of the East Asian students segment.
6.3 Segments inheritance
Segments in Marketing Factory are not organized in a tree structure (like folders and subfolders) with children inheriting properties from their parents. Nevertheless, as a segment can use other segments as conditions and, as the calculation of the segment population is done in real-time, this is functionally very similar to an inheritance mechanism.
If the segment(s) set as conditions are changed in their definition for any reason, then all segments using this condition will be instantly updated as well.
Lets say that our previous Students segment is defined by the following conditions:
- Age is between 15 and 21
- The property high-school is Yes
- The property college is Yes
We can create another segment for US students defined like this
- Segment is Students
- Country is USA
First this segment is faster to create or maintain, because we dont have to redefine the previous 3 conditions that define the Students segment. Second, if the Students segment is modified to take people from 13 to 22, then the change will immediately impact the US Students segment without having to edit it manually.
When building segments, unless you have very specific use cases, you should not try to be too specific. Multiplying very fine (hence, small in population) segments with too many conditions is not worth the time spent to manage them and may reduce performance. As the usage of segments is based on the fact that, statistically, the individuals who share the characteristics have similar behaviors, segments only make sense if there are enough profiles matching them.
7. Segments sharing
By default, segments are linked to the site in which they have been created; hence, a segment created in site A will not be available in site B either for personalization rules nor to analyze collected data.
In order to avoid duplication and heavy maintenance tasks of the same segments across different sites, it is possible to share a segment across all sites. To share a segment, check the Shared bow in the segment details page.
8. Using segments
Segments are mainly used to create personalized content on your website(s). Most of the time, a personalization by segment offers a good return on investment (ROI) compared to time invested in producing and coding personalized content or assets. Assigning a segment to a personalized variant takes only a few seconds and allows you to refer to a population that is not too small (unless your segment contains a significant amount of conditions).
Segments are also very convenient to save a lot of time when building personalization as relying on them avoid to redefine over and over the same conditions, which takes time.
Segments are also useful to analyze the reports provided by Marketing Factory, particularly the Qualitative analysis of your goal conversions. They will help you search for patterns or anti-patterns in your visitors behavior. It is more convenient to analyze results by segments rather than by trying to analyze user by user or property by property - even if that is a possible option with Marketing Factory. It can sometimes be more relevant than segments, which can mix multiple conditions.