Demystifying demographics: 11 ways to identify your audience

Demystifying demographics

Back in the day, identifying your customer base when starting a business meant old-fashioned market research and a good amount of guesswork.

Enter the 21st century, when sophisticated digital tools can scientifically deduce who will be most interested in your products whether you’ve opened your doors or not. The payoff comes when you can nimbly shift your advertising, marketing, product mix and overall energy to where it will pay off the most. Consider how the following might help in your segmentation quest.

  1. Pay-per-call campaigns earn their keep by generating more calls to your business and collecting demographic data about the callers. Used in conjunction, CallView360® software efficiently collects unfiltered switch-level data on the ad being addressed and the caller’s location, age, income and marital status. Then it compiles cost per call, cost per lead, ROI, calling and selling patterns, closing rates and average order per call center. All that could be crucial to your business, since pay-per-call conversions average 10 to 15 percent compared to the 2 to 3 percent realized for online conversions.
  2. Google Analytics (used by nearly 54 percent of all websites) offers valuable insight into who’s visiting your website, where they’re located, what device they’re using, how much time they’ve spent, how often they come back, which pages and links they’re visiting and which keywords they’re using and responding to.
  3. Highly targeted ads on Facebook cost as little as $1 a day. Experiment with ads aimed toward different sub groups.
  4. Facebook Insights reports on who’s liking your pages and posts. Supplement that by directly asking followers about their preferences, doing the same with social media followers.
  5. Poll current or potential customers via online services such as Survey Monkey, SurveyMonkey Audience, YouGov, EZquestionnaire or KeySurvey. Seek demographics and psychographics (attitudes, aspirations, etc.) and ask how they found your company; why they bought from you instead of the competition; how your product solves their problem; and what brings them back. For B2B, delve into key info and pain points.
  6. Online tools such as GFK MRI, YouEye, Ipsos Mendelsohn, Media Audit, Neilsen Scarborough, comScore and Sizmek offer various customized consumer research.
  7. Monitor online conversations of target customers via BurrellesLuce, Cision or SM2.
  8. Research your competitors, their customers, their target markets and niche markets they may not be capturing. Identify websites linked to theirs by typing “link:www.(competitor’s name).com” into Google. Or, can provide free visitor demographics on 10 websites of your choice.
  9. The U.S. Census Bureau can summarize your local market including age, race, gender, marital status, number of children, ancestral heritage, average income and poverty level.
  10. Get a better handle on your actual customer types by creating named personas that include age; gender; job title and details; salary/household income; location (rural, urban, suburban); education; family; goals and challenges; values; buying habits; and common objections during the sales process.
  11. Too busy for all that? Traditional market research conducted by an outside firm is always an option.

Find out more about how CallView360® works at