Recently, one of my clients reached out with a challenge that many businesses face. While this client knew that personalizing emails, messages, and LinkedIn InMails was important, he was utterly overwhelmed by the task. With a list of 4,000 quality contacts on LinkedIn alone, how could he possibly personalize every message without it consuming every minute of his work day?
He was despondent.
Truthfully, I work with a lot of business owners and sales managers who think personalization requires a 1:1 approach. While it’s true that 1:1 is the ultimate form of personalization, it’s not the only way to approach it. In fact, I believe that micro-segmentation — an approach where you lump contacts with similar traits, qualities, and business issues into small groups — can be just as effective as the 1:1 approach. And it requires much less time.
What does a micro-segment look like?
Here’s an example: Businesses with 10-50 employees that haven’t implemented cloud security services and are concerned specifically about team members using their own devices (BYOD) on the job. Here’s another example: Senior executives in manufacturing companies generating $15-50M in revenue who are focused on improving operational efficiency.
Grouping contacts and prospects into these types of micro-segments is beneficial in two big ways:
1. It still allows you to deliver a tailored message that resonates with a prospect’s specific needs, budget, interests, and pain points.
2. It allows you to send out personalized emails or messages in batches and campaigns, rather than having to spend time crafting a unique message for each contact on your list.
When it comes to email prospecting and campaigns, one thing is certain: If you don’t personalize your messages at all, then you won’t get many responses. Your message will feel too broad and generic – if they read it at all.
If, however, you try to personalize every email prospecting message for every contact, then you won’t have time to do anything else.
The key to striking a good balance between those two extremes is identifying micro-segments of contacts with similar roles, in similar types of companies, with similar issues, and then crafting a highly refined message that fits that niche of contacts. When you do that, every prospect will feel like you’re emailing them personally and you’ll still have time to manage the rest of your day-to-day activities – like answering the emails from people in your micro-segment who thought you sent one just to them!