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How To Segment Your Existing vs Prospective Database

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Many organisation's segment their database to reach different groups of leads with the right message. Existing customers have different needs and challenges compared to prospective customers or leads. Even within these two groups, you’ll have smaller groups with varying needs. A single message or campaign will not resonate with all of them. To communicate with all your target markets effectively, you need to implement a segmented communication and closed-loop marketing. 


How to segment your database

Both existing and prospective customers have one commonality: they are interested in your particular product or service. Now to refine the segmentation further, you need to look for other commonalities. Start with your current customers, as your best prospects are likely to have similar interests and needs. Segmenting your customer database provides you with the intelligence you need to proactively reach out to prospective customers. Questions to ask to create segmented lists include who, what, how and where:

 1. Begin by asking who your prospective customers are

Your Prospective Database is likely to be very similar to your current customers. Look where your current customers live geographically, as your future prospects are likely to come from these areas. They are also likely to have similar demographic data.

 2. Ask what your prospective customers will be like

The needs and interests of your current customers will likely be similar to those of your prospects. Look at what your current customers enjoy and what their challenges are. Observe what kind of messages get their attention and what are their preferred media channels.

 3. Ask how to reach your prospects

Start by looking at social media platforms and media sources that your current customers and prefer. Then compare your profiles by segment to those in the market to decide how you best pursue these prospects. This analysis will highlight how your prospective customers like to get information and where they are spending their digital time.

 4. Ask where to find your prospects

By establishing designated marketing areas, you can see where your best segments are situated – all the way down to street level. This can help with your online marketing, including Google Adwords, social media campaigns and direct mail.

Once you have segmented your database, you have all the intelligence you need to proactively reach out to prospective customers. Most importantly, this will help you identify the type of campaigns and messages that will be most effective in reaching and connecting with your different target markets.

Types of campaigns your segments will be interested in

  • Prospective customers will initially be interested in receiving generic information specific to your industry. Thereafter anything they have flagged in relation to a specific product or service that you may offer. If they receive irrelevant information, they will likely look for more engaging content elsewhere.
  • Current customers will want information about how you can add further value to them as an existing customer. Feel free to conduct surveys, ascertain if they are happy with your level of service or if they would be willing to refer your organisation to a friend or peer.


Lupo Digital is a sales and marketing growth team that specialises in digital sales, service and  inbound marketing, helping organisations with their client engagement and building strong ongoing relationships with their prospects and clients. 

For more information about how inbound marketing works for your organisation, download our executive guide to inbound marketing.

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Michael Wolf

Written by Michael Wolf

Founder of Lupo Digital, Michael is extremely passionate about digital and inbound marketing. Michael helps organisations drive rapid and sustainable customer and revenue growth.