While your fans all love and want to support your team, they may not share the same timeframe or demonstration of that support.
They come from all walks of life, various social strata, different economic places, and a variety of other demographics that make them unique. Because of all of these factors, a “one size fits all” email campaign may not be effective in targeting everyone or turning leads into customers. When it comes to fan engagement, the first key step is ensuring that your communication with your customers is customized to meet their needs.
Affinaquest has over 30 years of experience in collegiate athletics and fundraising, so we understand the importance of identifying your target audience and speaking to them directly. The most effective email campaign makes it clear that you know what interests your audience and that you want to continue to cultivate a relationship with them. Fan engagement is a long-haul endeavor that includes a dedicated program to lead nurturing and data management. A great method to a successful campaign is creating segmented emails for each stage of your customers’ engagement.
How to Create Segments for Collegiate Athletics
Your audience has different interests when it comes to their fandom. They may also be at different stages from initial intrigue all the way up to lifelong loyalty. This is why you can’t simply send out a generic email blast hoping it has enough to meet everyone’s needs. To ensure your email campaign targets everyone, creating organized segments based on your audience data points is critical.
A seasoned veteran fan of the franchise will not be interested in an email that seems generic or introductory. Veteran fans already know the history of the team, have a favorite player and have likely followed the progress of the team even throughout the off season. For this type of audience, you need an email that has been crafted for this segment. Perhaps she has been looking for a new player jersey to replace one she’s had for years or she is considering investing in season tickets. Demonstrating that you know the needs of your audience and want to fulfill them will help cultivate loyalty and drive sales. Customer management through email is all about understanding the variety of customers you have.
At Affinaquest, we can help you connect the data points of all of your fans and provide you with a predictive analytics score that will allow you to identify which fans are likely to buy season tickets and which might only be interested in attending one or two games throughout the season. Our software connects transaction data such as merchandise and ticket sales for every fan and helps you segment them so that you can target them appropriately for that new jersey or season ticket investment. Creating a segment and send targeting emails to that audience can happen in a matter of minutes rather than days.
Tips for a Successful Lead Nurture Campaign
Once you have identified segments you would like to send to, then you can create content that is specific to that segment’s interests on a regular basis. This is known as lead nurturing. Your audience members may not be fully ready to invest in your team, so it is important that you stay connected to them so that they know where to turn when they are ready to buy. Segmented emails are a great lead nurturing strategy in your overall campaign management.
Here are a few steps for a successful lead nurturing campaign:
- Identify how many segments you want to target. At Affinaquest, we recommend starting with 2 or 3 key buying behaviors and monitoring the results. You can always add segments as time goes on.
- Educate your customers about all the great information you have about your team and the many ways they can participate in your brand of sports entertainment
- Create content that is perfect for the segment of the audience you are targeting. Remember, the seasoned fan and the new fan are not going to necessarily be attracted by the same content.
- Stay engaging but brief. No one has the time to spend reading book-length emails that don’t quickly communicate their point. Part of effective customer management is keeping your audience interested.
- Don’t overwhelm your audience with too many emails. You need to find the right balance so your audience keeps you in mind but isn’t annoyed.
- Measuring is key. Always monitor your open and click-through rates. Which segment of the audience will open this email and how many are likely to click through to your site?
At Affinaquest, we understand the importance of segmenting your leads and crafting content for every segment. With our industry-leading data management, predictive analytics, and CRM solutions, your team will have everything needed to convert leads to customers and help you with your fan engagement and your customer and data management. Contact Affinaquest today to request a free demo.