How Psychographic Data Can Make Marketing More Targeted

July 27, 2018

Individual consumers are more than demographics—personal experience shapes who we are. Smart marketers pay attention to the layers beneath a surface identity. While our personalities and preferences are complicated, using the data that reflects those traits doesn’t have to be. Thorough strategists uncover the most useful and insightful information and consider psychographics, or the emotional reasons behind behavior, when planning campaigns and buying media.

You think you know someone

Traditional demographic data paints individuals in broad strokes. Millennials are tech-savvy, Boomers are frugal, Gen Xers are skeptical—those oversimplifications require no research. Reality is, of course, more complex. Platforms now track individuals’ behavior across devices, and those nuances should be tapped into by marketers to understand who might want what they’re selling whether online or offline. Psychographics can help strategists build the right content to find the right audience.

Reasonable assumptions based on demographic information can be helpful but only to a point. Yes, Boomers have lived most of their lives without mobile devices. But what about the percentage of Boomers who have grandchildren and have saved for extended family vacations and research on their smartphones.

These Boomers could be seen as a leaders, with their Gen Xers and Millennials children and grandchildren now the followers. And, their worldliness and vitality might have them falling into a separate active lifestyle category regardless of their age. All this understanding empowers marketers to have a more unique and relevant dialogue through highly personalized messages, custom creative and offers for the best-matched products.

A more complete picture

Because people fit into multiple categories, psychographic personas work together, and content should be customized accordingly.

What might resonate who and why?

  • PRODUCT DETAILS: Consider those who are practical and active in their community, love nature, the environment and people; true “diplomats” of the modern age. But some leaders might also be set in their ways which makes them overly loyal to certain products and services. A marketer’s diligence in sharing product details for something new will appeal to their empathetic hearts and could lead them change their affinity.
  • CONCISE COPY: Many fun-loving travelers will respond favorably to simple messages focused on experiences. But weekdays from 9-5, certain consumers in this segment are practical and analytical. No-frills, concise copy communicating the sensibility of spending time and money on emotionally rewarding adventures have a better chance of resonating during this time.
  • PERSONAL MESSAGES Hard-working and confident, demonstrably ambitious professionals are efficient, analytical and intelligent. In some cases though, they might not be willing to get outside their comfort zones. Linking their trait of confidence to images of new situations for them and their families can be effective marketing to move these consumers.

Asking the right questions

The savviest marketers go beyond what or how, when or where a consumer tends to buy—they’ll understand why. Today, brands don’t need to ask consumers about their motivations; buyers reveal their mindsets through social posts, past purchases, online search and other behaviors.

Even on an individual level, trends evolve over a lifetime based on the emotions and circumstances. Direct marketing campaigns based on a mix of demographic, behavioral and psychographic data make a lot of sense. This method identifies cross-sections of individuals at specific points in their journey. This way messages can be most relevant, empathetic and valuable.

A better understanding

Consumers are complex and live somewhere on a spectrum of the most appropriate labels. Using psychographics means marketers can know consumers better than ever before; and use this to make connections most effectively.

To test how direct mail messages, images and offers will resonate with your target audiences using thousands of variables without ever printing a piece, contact an Accelerated Insights expert today. Learn how