How hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers can improve your conversion

Caroline Burk

Updated: May 24, 2024 · 9 min read

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You’d be hard-pressed to find a business that didn’t want to convert more leads into happy customers. Most are always on the lookout for the next great strategy to help them secure more sales and increase their conversion rate.

Trends come and go, but the strategies we’ll cover in this article are tried and true. They’re proven tools that we’ve seen transform thousands of businesses:

Hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers.

Brian “Redbeard” Keith, special guest and founder of Red Beard Consulting, joined Olivia Jade for last month’s Level Up event, where he walked through these two tactics in depth.

Keep reading to discover best practices for implementing hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers into your own business, benefits you can expect, practical examples, and more.

First and foremost: The misconception

Before diving into the meat of hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers, Jade asked Brian what the biggest misconception is surrounding these two subjects.

For Brian, he wished more people knew that not all buyers are created the same.

Initially, this might confuse you — a buyer’s a buyer, right? Wrong. Brian begs you to dig deeper when looking at customers and the rest of your contact database. And you can do that by asking questions, such as:

  • How long ago did they buy?
  • Did they buy more or less than $100?
  • Did they buy a second time?

These questions will vary based on your industry and your specific company. They’ll also change depending on what types of contacts you’re looking at. For example, the questions you ask to get more detail on your customers won’t be the same ones you ask about your leads.

No matter what your business is or what contacts you’re examining, Brian’s sentiment remains the same: Ask questions and go deeper.

Why the questions matter

To go from simple segmentation to hyper-segmentation, you need to know as much about your contacts as possible. That’s why asking questions and getting the details from your small business CRM is essential. Your CRM software holds extensive data about each contact's journey with your company, so why not leverage that information for better communication?

The details you’ll find out can then be used to segment your database with greater detail and intentionality. They’ll also inform the behavior-based triggers you use to launch business automation campaigns.

Why hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers are worth it

The extra work you’ll put in to get to know your contact list will pay off over time. Brian has seen it in the countless companies he’s helped since launching his consulting business in 2012.

In fact, Brian uses hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers with almost all of his clients because they are some of the best ways to land sales and increase conversion.

But why do these tactics have that effect on leads and customers? “They feel taken care of in the buying process,” Brian explains.

He saw this firsthand when he built a post-purchase nurture campaign for a retail business he was working with. His client wanted to get customers to become repeat buyers without spamming them with things they didn’t care about. So, Brian employed hyper-segmentation and organized his client’s contacts based on whether or not they had purchased a best-selling product. If a contact had not bought a best-seller, they’d receive automated emails informing them about different features and benefits of that best-seller. Once the campaign was launched, Brian used behavior-based triggers to get even more specific, monitoring who clicked on which links and delivering content accordingly.

A few positive results of this approach include:

  • Time saved: Months of automated emails are nurturing customers toward repeat business without the business owner or their team having to lift a finger.
  • Happy customers: Customers are receiving informative emails that are relevant to their current stage in the buying process. They’re not being spammed with generic emails, full of promos on something they’ve already purchased or don’t care about.
  • Increased conversion: Thanks to the reliability of business automation, forgotten follow-ups and other manual mistakes can become things of the past, which means no leads fall through the cracks. Plus, behavior-based triggers allow the automated messages to pivot based on the customer’s most recent activity so they’ll never receive repetitive, irrelevant messages (ie. If a customer buys the best-seller that was being promoted to them, automation will give them a break from emails and then start up a new nurture series for a different product).

Five things you can do today

1. Track your business’s top two most important actions.

The first thing you can do on your hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers journey is choose the two most important actions your audience could take and track them. But Brian doesn’t just want you to pay attention to these actions individually — he wants you to track the dwell time between them.

For example, if your most important actions are when someone first clicks a link in your email and when they add an item to their cart, you’ll want to monitor the amount of time it takes to go from point a to point b. Then, pay special attention to the 20% who are the quickest to take action and segment them into a group. These people are likely the most eager to buy, so they’ll benefit from a special nurture sequence.

2. Find the average time it takes for someone to go from contact to customer. 

A small business CRM collects data on your audience from the moment their information hits your system. Brian urges businesses to leverage this data by measuring how much time passes between someone becoming a contact and making a purchase.

After you find your average, tailor your marketing campaigns around that timing. For example, if your data shows it takes an average of 14 days to go from contact to customer, turn up the heat with your outreach efforts as day 14 approaches. But don’t go overboard — one email, text, or sales call can be all it takes to nudge them in the right direction.

3. If you run a membership site, look at your average retention length.

Nobody wants to see a member cancel their subscription, but it’s often inevitable. However, you can cut down on your cancellations with Brian’s simple fix.

Turn to your small business CRM and find the average amount of time it takes for customers to end their subscription. Once you have that information, segment your groups based on their specific membership, craft a thoughtful retention campaign, and launch it right around the time people typically cancel.

If your customers cancel at around the 90-day mark, consider delivering them a gift box on day 75. This will be a pleasant surprise, delighting them and reminding them of the value you have to offer. Once they feel this way, they’ll be less likely to cancel and you’ll have just retained a customer.

4. Experiment!

You probably have a routine built into your marketing plans, but Brian suggests stepping out of that structure and using segmentation to conduct some experiments.

Start by tracking how long it takes for people to open your most important emails. Look at this data over time, and then switch up the days and times you send for certain segments of your audience. Use segmentation’s abilities to create a control group of people who will get your emails at the usual time and two experimental groups who will receive the emails at different times.

This process will help reveal the day and time people are most likely to open and act on your messages.

5. Think of ways to reward fast action-takers.

Certain segments of your contacts are fast and loyal, so make sure to say thanks by rewarding that behavior. Brian suggests doing this outside of the point of sale, meaning you don’t just reward people after they’ve purchased because that’s far too common and often goes ignored.

Instead, segment out your most engaged contacts and surprise them with an exclusive deal. By doing so, you’ll set your business a part, show your appreciation and reinforce their behavior so they continue to engage.

Tools to make your life easier

The five tips above are game-changers, but don’t think you have to hyper-segment, strategize, organize data and implement behavior-based triggers all on your own. Check out two of Brian’s recommended time-saving tools below, and watch the Level Up replay at the top of this blog for even more.

Google Sheets/Excel

These are common tools, but Brian wants you to start using them in a way that will take your segmentation strategy to the next level. All you have to do is take your data (open rates, how fast people purchase, how long it takes to go from subscriber to customer and more) and put it all in one document. Then, you’ll be able to organize and manipulate it so you can see deeper trends in your customer journey. The information you uncover will help you make data-backed segmentation decisions, leading to more effective and specific strategies.

PlusThis Google Sheets Exporter

If you want to go the extra mile with your data, implement Google Sheets Exporter. This will make dynamic tracking possible, so you can track how your trends change month to month and make tweaks to your strategies accordingly. Plus, if you’re a Keap user, you can integrate your app with Google Sheets Exporter to export data directly from your small business CRM and make automation even easier.

How we can help

Brian knows how complicated hyper-segmentation and behavior-based triggers can be without a solid tool. That’s why it’s crucial to find a small business CRM and automation software that can help you bring these strategies to life.

Brian’s choice of software is Keap, and the tagging feature is one of his favorite tools to help with his hyper-segmentation efforts. Keap tags are what allow Brian to organize his client’s contact databases quickly and accurately so he can then segment more specifically. Essentially, tags are what make hyper-segmentation possible. The best part is you can implement tags into your business automation campaigns so your software automatically tags contacts based on the actions they take.

Explore the tagging feature in your Keap app, and get started implementing Brian’s tips today! If you’re not a Keap user, don’t sweat it. Check to see if your current software offers similar features or add these to your list of must-haves for your future CRM and business automation platform.

Curious about Keap’s other features? Check out our website and explore how complete business automation can help you reach your goals more efficiently (and automatically) and save you time in the process.

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