Courtney Eckerle

Marketing 101: What is taxonomy?

July 7th, 2017
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Janine Silva, Director of Email Marketing and Integrated Marketing, Investopedia, used the term, “taxonomy,” many times as she described her team’s behavioral marketing efforts in a recent case study.

It made me realize that even with as many marketers as I’ve spoken to and interviewed, this term marked a gap in my knowledge. What does taxonomy really mean in our field?

As Janine’s case study explores, taxonomy is vital to breathing life into journey-based marketing. According to Merriam Webster, taxonomy is the “orderly classification of plants and animals according to their presumed natural relationships.”

Obviously, marketing’s adoption of the term isn’t too far off from that. When putting together personas, or any kind of personalized marketing system, it’s setting up the structure and process by which people are going to be categorized.

Understanding taxonomy is huge when looking at analytics and data to try to organize it into this structure.  If you don’t have the right taxonomy set up, data means absolutely nothing, no matter how much of it is being collected.

Implementing taxonomy will give your data the structure and cues that it needs to translate customer behaviors into that particular piece of content that is going to appeal to them, or what they want to see in their inbox.

You might also like…

30 Minute Marketer: Customer Personas

Marketing Automation: Key challenges a global information company overcame to transform from batch-and-blast to persona-driven email marketing

B2B Email Marketing: How a publishing company used marketing automation to increase CTR 1,112%

Website Taxonomy Guidelines and Tips: How Best To Organize Your Site

Courtney Eckerle

About Courtney Eckerle

With a focus on aspirational, customer-first marketing, Courtney’s goal has been to produce clear, interesting and actionable external content for MarketingSherpa readers. This has included writing over 300 case studies, moderating live event interviews, and producing video content. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in English Literature, Mass Communications and Film Studies from Saint Mary’s College in Notre Dame, Ind., and was a correspondent for USA Today College prior to joining MECLABS Institute.

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