Today we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  Or maybe I should say #MLK for all you younger readers. :)

Martin Luther King Jr.

As I’m sure you know, today’s holiday is to recognize King’s success in protesting racial discrimination.  In King’s most famous “I Have a Dream” speech, he declared his dream that one day we’ll all be treated equally.  With regards to civil rights, I 100% agree with King, and I’m sure you do as well. Everyone deserves equal rights and no one should receive special treatment because of race, religion, politics, or any other categorization.

In other words, the act of separating groups for the purpose of treating those groups differently in social circumstances is a violation of civil liberties.  However, there is one circumstance where separating two groups and treating them differently is not only legal, it is crucial… Your marketing and advertising!

In fact, to be successful in marketing and advertising, you absolutely must treat all of your groups of prospects differently.  If you try to use the same message for every type of prospect, then your campaigns will fail.  In the world of marketing and advertising, all prospects should not be treated equally.


Who Are Your Different Prospects?

At this point, you may be thinking you only have one group of prospects so this doesn’t apply to you.  For example, if you’re a DUI defense attorney, then your group of prospects is anyone charged with a DUI right?  Well, yes, that’s true; However, you need to break down that group even further to have a shot at creating profitabe marketing campaigns.

In this particular market, a few additional segments to consider are: prospects with or without a license, prospects with or without previous charges,  high school students, college students, celebrities, professional athletes, etc.  The list can go on and on, and the level of detail depends on the types of customers (or in this case, clients) you work with.


Why You Must Treat Your Prospects Differently

Let’s continue with the same DUI defense attorney example.  Are the concerns of a celebrity the same as a high school student?  Obviously not.

A high school student charged with a DUI is probably worried about how this is going to affect his chances of going to college.  A celebrity is worried about his career and his image.  With that in mind, does it make sense to use the same message to both types of prospects?  Again, the answer is no.  Different messages are needed to get the best response.

Whether we’re talking about writing and designing banner ads, or email follow ups, we must have a clear picture of exactly WHO we’re targeting.  Only then can we expect to draft the most compelling messages that resonate with our target prospects.


Google AdWords Rewards Segmentation

Finally, I’ll address the Google AdWords quality score, which rewards advertisers that take the time to segment their market.  The AdWords quality score is basically a grade from 0 – 10 that tells you how closely you’re matching your ads to your target prospects.

If your ads and landing pages perfectly match the prospect searching in, then you’ll receive a 10/10 quality score.  If you try to take shortcuts and use the same ads and landing pages for all of your keywords, then I guarantee you’ll have lower quality scores.  That’s because you’re not segmenting!

The reason for the AdWords quality score is fairly simple.  Google’s #1 priority is to ensure their users have a positive experience using Google’s search engine.  If their users are not satisfied, then they’ll go use Yahoo, Bing, or some other website, and Google will lose advertising revenue.   By making the user experience the #1 priority, they will naturally maximize market share and revenue.  It’s just good business.

So the quality score is Google’s measure of how satisfied their users are with your ads.  If people click on your ads, engage with your landing page, and don’t complain about you, then you’ll tend to have high quality scores.  If people do not click on your ads because they aren’t 100% relevant, quickly bounce off of your landing page because it doesn’t address their particular needs, and even complain about you via in-ad surveys, then you’ll have low quality scores.  Low quality scores will raise your minimum cost per clicks and lower your ad position, which in effect forces you off of Google so you stop giving their users a bad experience.

When you segment and tailor your ads and landing pages for your prospects, then it’s truly a win-win-win situation.  Google wins because their users are happy and continue to click on Google’s ads.  Your prospects are happy because they are finding exactly what they want, exactly when they want it.  And you’re happy because your high quality scores will give you lower cost per clicks, more prominent ad positions in Google, and ultimately, more leads and sales.

Of course, this doesn’t just apply to Google AdWords.  In all of your marketing and advertising, the more you segment and the more you treat those segments differently, the more successful you will be!