How to Build Powerful Audience Segments with Better Insights
by Infegy Research Team on December 9, 2019
Brands frequently miss the correct data on audiences, leading to a mountain of problems: bad audience segmentation can doom everything from customer targeting, advertising, product innovation, and competitive advantages.
The insights available through social listening go beyond demographics to implement psychographic segmentation. Paired with demographic data, it helps you understand the why—the goals, challenges, emotions, values, habits, and hobbies that drive purchase decisions.
This data pinpoints key insights about targeted audience groups that can’t be found with other methods.
How can you use social listening for better audience segmentation?
We’ll show you how to use social listening to create these 4 real-life audience segments:
1. Brand Advocates
2. Product-Focused Audience Segments
3. Topic-Focused Audience Segments
4. Generational Audience Segments
Ahead, we'll see examples of how to build audience segments for each of those scenarios.
|SEGMENTATION OPTION IDEAS|
What demos does the typical audience belong to: age, gender, etc.?
How do they identify themselves online? Mom, grandparent, religious, political affiliation, LGBTQ+,
gamer, autoworker, daycare worker
Do they talk about specific brands or products? Do they need to talk about them positively or negatively?
What are the topical interests or affinities -- skiing, activism, donating, world peace, shopping, traveling,
watching movies, home automation?
Consideration + Intent
What behaviors does the segment exhibit towards a brand or topic-- consideration, purchase intent,
acquisition, loyalty, churn, etc.?
What are the emotions of various consumers within the segment toward a topic or brand? For example,
do brand advocates express a high amount of “joy”?
Are there top keywords, positive/negative topics, hashtags, etc that need to be considered when looking
Target by geography tagged inside posts or self-identified geographic placements such as #NYlife or
Are you looking for just English speakers, or dual-language speakers such as sources who speak in both
English and Spanish.
Do you want to limit the amount of social influence that your target has? No more than 1,000 followers?
Do you want to find consumers only on Instagram versus Twitter or blogs?
Do you want to find consumers who mention or talk about specific topics frequently?
Brand Advocates Audience Segment
To find advocates, you don’t want to just look for people who follow your brand. You want to find people who talk positively about your brand and do so often.
For example, we will look for Brand Advocates of outdoor apparel brand The North Face who are also Outdoor Enthusiasts.
Here is what we are looking for in our audience research:
Here’s what that audience segment persona profile looks like:
What makes this audience segmentation stand out is the ability to find consumers who are talking about a brand positively, a specific number of times, over a specific period of time.
If you look only for consumers who follow a specific brand or talk about a brand, you could be bringing detractors into your audience segment instead of promoters. Using what consumers say broadly to create segments, you analyze them based on what they say and do, a much more reliable segment of brand advocates.
Product-Focused Consumer Audience Segment
To find our product consumers, we want to identify people who talk positively or negatively about the product.
For this example, we’ll layer two audience segments, consumers that already show an affinity to buy smart home technology to see who consumers are they also talk about purchasing smart lighting.
Here is a product-based audience segment we wanted to look for:
-- Home Techie audience: consumers who state they own smart audio speakers, smart thermostats, smart doorbells, smart vacuums, or home streaming devices
-- Those who talk about wanting to purchase smart lighting
For example, you can see that the Home Techies audience segment talks about Smart Lighting positively and that Smart Lighting conversations are more common by males than females, falling in the age range of 19-34.
This is a perfect demonstration of how much you can learn and how deep you can go with psychographic audience segmentation with social listening.
Now, let’s take a look at building a topic-based audience segment.
Topical Persona: Healthy Lifestyles
In a recent consumer insights report for the health and wellness industry, we crafted four “Healthy Lifestyles” personas with our social insights: the Casual Dieter, the Fitness Fanatic, the Wellness Guru and the Organic consumer.
Here is what we were looking for with each one:
-- Casual Dieter - Consumers who talk about counting calories or talking about specific diet plans
-- Fitness Fanatic - Consumers who talk about fitness or working out more than 2x in 12 months
-- Wellness Guru - Consumers who mention meditation, self care, and changing their personal habits for wellness
-- Organic Consumer - Consumers who discuss eating organic foods or using organic products
From this research, we developed our personas, then also analyzed demographics, top linguistics, and most-used hashtags for each one:
Next, we’ll take audience segmentation even deeper by examining a generational, topical, and brand-related segment:
Generational Audience Segment: Gen Z Netflix Audiences Who Speak English and Spanish
Take Generation Z, for example. Gen Z is still new to the market. While 40% of consumer sales are impacted by Gen Z, the group still isn’t buying enough to provide accurate sales data. But what Gen Z does do is talk online. And boy, do they talk online!
If you’re wanting to research and understand audiences in Gen Z, you might have a specific niche group from that generation that falls within your target.
What if we wanted to find Gen Z audiences who also speak multiple languages and also discuss a brand?
Using flexible search filters to find data on Gen Z consumer conversations, you can build custom audience segments based upon this generation or any other generation you want to look at (millennials, Gen X or Baby Boomers, etc.). Then you can add additional custom audiences on top to get more specific. Pro tip: most social analytics platforms aren’t able to do this.
For this example, we’ll layer a few different segmentation analyses together and search for people talking about making a particular action.
Here’s what we wanted to find within that group who mentions Netflix:
-- Bi-lingual Spanish-English consumers who have self-identified as bi-lingual by saying a phrase such as “I am bilingual” in Spanish or for people saying broadly used Spanish terms like “trabajo” or “inglés”
-- Those consumers talking about Netflix
-- Those who are in the Generation Z age segment
The four previous audience segment examples with social listening have helped peel back the curtain in creating high-quality data-driven segments. But there are some considerations you definitely need to take into account when applying social data for audience segmentation:
You can learn a lot about people by listening to what they say.
Accurate audience segmentation requires analyzing audience conversations across the web that are filled with biographical and psychographic information.
Social listening tools provide a powerful way to create a whole host of different types of audience segments, but there are a few key things to consider when it comes to choosing the right social insights tools.
Many social tools don’t go far enough. For example, some tools can only find surface-level information about audiences because they only analyze who they follow on Twitter or what they say in their Twitter bios.
Social listening tools like Infegy Atlas go much further, looking at what people say, how they describe themselves and their lifestyles. And they analyze at a multi-channel level, finding audience insights from channels all over the web, not just Twitter.
Here are a few important considerations when building audiences with social listening:
- Base audience segments off what they say, not who they follow
- Most social listening tools rely on who audiences follow, so their audience segments look like: “people who follow Taco Bell and also follow The Rock”
- Build audiences based on multi-channel sources, not just Twitter
- Our platform finds audience conversations and engagement for Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, micro blogs, forums and more
- Combine audience segments for a more specific view
- You can filter or combine audiences to get a segment like: “Gen Z The North Face fans”
- But avoid going too specific with audience segments
- We’ve seen some pretty wild attempts at audience segments, such as: Females, age 23-40 who love the outdoors, want to be overachievers at work but also like to have fun with her friends. And they like animals.
- Look for psychographic details beyond just brand affinities
- You can build audience segments like “gamers” and “YouTube watchers” or deeper like “Nike fans who are interested in photography” or “people who are in med school who love Taco Bell late night”
To understand your audiences and what drives them to act, think or feel toward a brand or topic, you need to have the right metrics to analyze what they say about themselves.
We’ve demonstrated in this article how to use social listening for audience segmentation in an effective and flexible manner.
Implementing these social listening insights can help your team craft awesome segments of target audiences, brand advocates, generational segments and more.
If you’d like to put these powerful insights to use for your own audience segmentation, contact us today to see how they can help your team!
- March 2023 (2)
- February 2023 (4)
- January 2023 (2)
- December 2022 (3)
- November 2022 (5)
- October 2022 (3)
- September 2022 (3)
- August 2022 (2)
- July 2022 (1)
- June 2022 (1)
- April 2022 (1)
- March 2022 (1)
- January 2022 (1)
- December 2021 (1)
- November 2021 (2)
- October 2021 (1)
- June 2021 (1)
- May 2021 (1)
- April 2021 (1)
- March 2021 (1)
- February 2021 (1)
- January 2021 (2)
- November 2020 (1)
- October 2020 (2)
- September 2020 (1)
- August 2020 (2)
- July 2020 (2)
- June 2020 (2)
- May 2020 (1)
- April 2020 (1)
- March 2020 (3)
- February 2020 (2)
- January 2020 (2)
- December 2019 (2)
- November 2019 (1)
- October 2019 (1)
- September 2019 (2)
- August 2019 (2)
- July 2019 (2)
- June 2019 (2)
- May 2019 (2)
- April 2019 (1)
- March 2019 (2)
- February 2019 (2)
- January 2019 (1)