Want to send more targeted emails to your employees? Here are 6 different ways to segment your 'all-staff' employee lists so you can send more relevant internal communications.

All-staff emails are a blessing and a curse.

They’re great because you can easily reach all employees on one of the most accessible and universal communication platforms: email.

They can also help you make sure all employees get messages about company-wide initiatives and get all employees on the same page about company strategy and vision.

But they can also be the worst.



When we have to email all employees about things that aren’t relevant to all employees, our emails lose credibility. 

Every time we email all staff for something that only concerns one office, one business unit, or just a few locations, we’re basically spamming all employees with irrelevant information.

Over time, the all-staff email can start to kill your email engagement. When employees frequently receive email that isn’t relevant to them from a specific sender (internally AND externally) they tend to start ignoring them — if they can’t opt-out entirely. 

What is an internal communicator to do?

Luckily, there’s a pretty simple fix: only send relevant emails to the relevant employees. 

But how?

The secret to stopping email overload and keeping employees opening and reading your emails is to have targeted employee distribution lists.  

Wait, what is an employee distribution list exactly?

An employee distribution list is a list of employee email addresses that are grouped together and behave like a single recipient. 

When you select all-staff as a recipient for your employee newsletter, for example, you are, technically, sending it to an employee distribution list. 

To use a distribution list means that you’re not inputting every single email address individually, which is great if you want to avoid reply-all drama.  

The problem is that all-staff employee distribution lists aren’t targeted. 

A targeted employee distribution list groups specific employees that share similar attributes, like a location or seniority level, so you can reach just the relevant employees. 

What’s the best way to group employees in distribution lists? 

There are lots of different kinds of distribution lists you could create based on your unique employee population. 

Heck, you could group together dog-lovers or brunettes if you really wanted to.

But we’ve done our research and recommend you start with these  6 distribution lists that will help you segment your all-staff audience strategically and get you started on the right foot for sending more relevant emails to the relevant employees.  

(Want full control over your email sending? Check out the Take Control of Your Lists webinar and or take a look at Bananatag's Custom Distribution List feature.)


The 6 distribution lists you need for better internal communication


1. Employee lists based on office locations

This may seem like a no brainer, but having a separate list for each office location is pretty important. One of the most common complaints about all-staff emails we’ve seen is when communicators have to copy all staff to an email that is just about one location.

The email couldn’t be more irrelevant to people who aren’t in that specific office!

The ability to target a specific city or group of office locations will enable you to reach only those employees in specific locations when needed, rather than communicating localized information to your entire all-staff list.

We’ve also learned first hand from our customers that location-based lists are not only important for timely, and location-specific communications but are also critical for communication in the event of a crisis.


2. Employee lists targeted at just leadership teams and managers

Having a list of employees broken down by their seniority or leadership level can be helpful, whether that information is just relevant to leaders or you’re sharing updates that you expect managers to circulate to employees.

Whether the communication between managers and their employees is done by email or in person, the ability to reach only those in leadership positions with targeted communications is key so that managers can digest important information before they disseminate it, especially if some employees don’t have company email addresses.

3. Employee lists grouped by job function or department

The experience that employees have in your organization is inherently linked to the team or department they work in. 

Reaching employees with targeted emails based on their job function or department will enable you to send relevant information to large groups of similar employees, and be more responsive to any issue that affects specific teams or departments.

4. Employee lists targeted at specific business  divisions or units

Similar to segmenting employees based on their job title or department, targeting communications to larger business units, divisions or specialized groups, allows you to cut out information from your all-staff communications that are only really important to these specific groups. 

How your organization is structured will inform what kind of groups or divisions you target. For example, you could group together all employees on the East Coast, all manufacturing teams, or all customer-facing departments.


5. Employee lists segmented by the employees’ primary device type

The experience employees have with your emails can be very different depending on whether they receive and read them on their mobile devices or a desktop computer. 

Even if you're using a tool like Bananatag to design mobile-friendly emails that are responsive to different screen sizes, employees that primarily use mobile devices will engage with your content in a different way. People reading your emails on their phone will likely spend less time reading longer articles and are less likely to come back to the email once they’ve clicked a link that takes them out of their phone’s email client. 

The ability to segment between desktop and mobile recipients allows you to target  important messages appropriately for the recipients who you anticipate will view your email on their smartphone.


6. Employee lists segmented by the recipients’ primary language

For enterprises with offices around the globe, having an employee distribution  list for each language can help you make sure your messages are understood. 

Being able to target employees in their preferred or primary language (regardless of their physical location) gives you the opportunity to tailor and/or translate important messages to ensure they are understood, even if English is the default language for the majority of your internal comms.

Once you have these 6 distribution lists configured in your organization, you will have the power to make every message more impactful.

Using employee segmentation can stop your communications from becoming diluted and ignored, while also relieving employees from irrelevant messages and email overload.

And if you do decide you need to send an email to all staff, you can be confident knowing that your message is likely to be relevant to everyone you send to.

Want to create targeted lists like these, without needing to ask IT? Join our upcoming webinar to find out how!