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Optimize Your Audience: Considerations, Validation, and Troubleshooting Tips
Optimize Your Audience: Considerations, Validation, and Troubleshooting Tips

Learn about the filters you can use to segment your audience

Updated over a week ago

Questions to answer

  • What considerations should I keep in mind when building an audience?

  • How can I validate that my audience is pulling in the correct customers?

  • What are some troubleshooting tips I can use to resolve an audience issue?

Audience considerations

The following best practices should help you create audiences that capture the customers you need.

Funnel customer behavior groups

When using more than one behavior group within the customer behavior filter, make sure you add your behaviors with the widest reach, then getting more granular with each additional behavior. Treating the customer behaviors setup like a funnel will ensure you aren't leaving a customer segment out.

You can do this by adding all your customer behavior criteria that use the did condition first before adding customer behavior that uses did not.

For example, you could create an audience who did add a product to their cart between one to two hours ago and then did not remove the product from their cart in the last two hours.

Stagger the qualification window when using abandoned campaigns

When creating audiences for abandoned cart, product, and search campaigns, add a staggered qualification window to capture more behavioral events and take advantage of additional retries.

For example, since cart abandonment is the highest priority event, you could add a qualification window of three hours. As the second highest priority event, product abandonment would use a qualification window of four hours, and lastly search abandonment would use a qualification window of five hours.

Use catch up campaigns

Some customers may not qualify for a campaign because of the channel frequency cap.

To include more customers, you can duplicate your audience and add a did not receive email customer behavior and select one or more campaigns.

Understand your inventory levels

If you are defining a product-based customer behavior (ex. add product(s) to cart) by inventory size, make sure the inventory size makes sense for your business.

For example, if you are a boutique or do small, limited edition inventory updates, you may not want to limit the behavior by inventory size.

Audience Validations

If you've created your audience using customer attributes or behaviors, you can validate that the audience is pulling in the correct customers:

  1. Click Preview Audience to see the size of your audience.

  2. Once the query completes, select one of the email addresses from the list. Their Customer 360 profile displays.

  3. Verify that the customer attribute on their profile aligns with the customer attribute in the audience.

Common troubleshooting tips

As you build your audience, you may notice that something doesn't look quite right. Here are a few common issues and how to troubleshoot them.

Note: When troubleshooting, you can click Preview Audience at any time to check the size of your audience. This will not save the audience, so you can use this as much as needed for troubleshooting assistance.

An audience displays, emphasizing the Preview Audience button

Audience size is different than expected

When was the last time you updated your audience?

Audiences dynamically update when used in a campaign, so a cart abandonment audience may be larger or smaller than it was last week. Because an audience can't be saved without first being previewed, the Last Edited column on the Audiences page is a good indication of how recently the audience size was calculated.

In the audience, click Preview Audience to get a new audience size.

Your audience may include eligibility statuses that can't receive campaigns

If you're using an audience with a campaign, you may be seeing a discrepancy for the following reasons:

Some customers have hit the frequency cap

If you have multiple campaigns going out, some customers may have hit their frequency cap from another campaign. To know what your global frequency caps are, check the setup in the account-level marketing settings.

A condition may be configured incorrectly

In your audience, review the conditions for each attribute and make sure that you're using the and and or conditions as you expect.

If one of your conditions looks wrong, you can edit the filter criteria, change the condition, and preview the audience.

A filter may be configured incorrectly

Remove one filter, then preview your audience. If the audience number still doesn't match what you expect, remove a second filter and preview your audience.

Continue removing filters until you find the one that's causing the discrepancy.

You may be using customer attributes that haven't imported yet

If you are using new customer attributes that were imported less than 24 hours ago, the file may not have completed uploading. Wait 24 hours after the initial import before previewing your audience.

For more information, see data imports review.

Preview audience query not running

If previewing the audience is taking a long time to run or errors out, check your lookback window and make sure it's six months or less.

Note: If you find that you often need a longer qualification window for the same customer behavior, consider using a new customer attribute instead.

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