Age, gender, ethnicity- these have been the basic tenets that marketers live by. By knowing these facts about the target audience, marketers have been able to target them in broad ways. Recently, however, it seems that broad targeting might not be as effective. Why? Well, it’s possible that not all 18-25 year olds are tech-savvy, and maybe more 60-65 year olds than we thought are. But how can marketers even start to know the answers to those questions? Psychographics. While demographics explain who your audience is, psychographics help inform about their actual behaviors.
Psychographics have always been on the marketing scene, but with the growing ability to gather this type of data, its popularity has been steadily growing. This type of data allows marketers to get even more specific in their ad targeting. Now, instead of knowing that your target audience is 25 year old females who are interested in beauty products, you can also find out that they might tend to be online more in the evenings, commute a long distance, are looking for a new place to live and value quality products over less expensive name brands.
Knowing that information, combined with the targeted ads now offered by Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc. makes it so much easier to reach your specific audience. Knowing the behaviors of your target audience makes it possible to target potential customers who are searching for specific things with key words. Now, you can target anyone who searches for new homes or is looking for a quality handbag.
Finding out the psychographics of a specific audience can seem daunting at first, but it is easier than you might think. Have a loyalty program? Start there. Look into exactly who is using it and when. Use this information to start to build detailed profiles of your customers. Use surveys or reviews to really look at the behaviors that are driving your customers. Why did they buy? How did they find out about the product? Another easy way is to ask your customers. Start with those you have the best relationships with and start asking them questions.
You can look at who is following you on social media. Users are usually very forthcoming about their interests, likes and dislikes on their pages. Just be careful to keep your searches to gathering general data, as it can be considered unethical to delve into people’s profiles obtaining every last detail. But, if your searches are to get a basic sense of the person, that’s perfectly okay. Finally, if you really are still feeling unsure about gathering data, you can outsource the task to a marketing agency or use a web tool that can provide this information directly to you. Whatever avenue you choose, gather all of the data you have, and then start to let it thoughtfully inform your upcoming marketing strategies.
Demographics are still a viable way to set basic parameters about a target audience. However, to really enhance your marketing campaign, combine both demographics and psychographics. After consideration of consumer behavior, messaging and campaigns can then be built around reaching a specific target. Building a campaign that is less generic can lead to more engagement.