Branding Blog

Demographics, Geographics, Psychographics: help build buyer personas.

Written by Dale Berkebile | Tue, May 14, 2013


In today's fast-paced, ultra-competitive business environment, marketing is more important than ever.

However, it must be done with a laser-like focus on the potential customer… that is most likely to respond to your message and will meet your goals for profitability or customer lifetime value.

Marketing is not cheap, in both time and money spent. Resources wasted on an ineffective marketing campaign are expenses that few businesses can afford. To avoid this, effective marketers use Geo-graphics, demographics and Psycho-graphics to gain an edge over the competition. Due to an ever-shrinking world, these topics are used and needed today far more than ever.

Let's look at a brief definition of these three topics, and then delve into the reasons why they are so effective.

  • Geo-graphic marketing looks at three main components: Population density, climate and language. To keep it simple, your target market must be in the area where you are marketing. Are you able to service anyone, any where or just local or regional customers?

  • Demographic marketing looks at the changing trends of consumer behavior, and tries to understand what people are thinking, and what they are willing to buy.

  • Psycho-graphics is the study and classification of people based on psychological traits such as attitudes, habits, interests and opinions. You may have heard of "lifestyle" advertising which is based on tapping into who people are and/or want to be.

Know your customer

If there is a phrase to never, ever forget when marketing, it is: “know your customer.” This begins with the obvious: age, nationality, gender and income levels. A simple example would be to focus on middle-aged men when marketing a supplement promoting a healthy prostate. Another example is concentrating on high-income consumers when selling luxury cars.

But there is more to effective use of these three topics in marketing than what has been mentioned... far, far more. The best marketers delve deep into the minds of their customers. What are their concerns and problems? What have they tried in the past that hasn't worked? What are the deep-seated fears that keep them up at night? What do they really want? The answer to these questions may not be as obvious as they appear. It is the marketer's job to really dig deep. How?

Many marketers appear to be having a conversation with their prospect. Relating to them on a level of “I'm in this just like you are” quite often results in a bond of trust being formed, which leads to successful marketing. This is also good for the sales team and allows them to become the trusted advisor they need to be in order to better service the customer in a consultative sales process and delivery. Intensive, exhaustive, inquisitive research is the key to really understand your best customers. As competitive as the marketplace is, few companies take the time to dig into the intense research on customer understanding. The ones that do leapfrog their competitors.