Four Ways Psychographics Can Help Your Business Decisions

Recently, I was doing some market research for a couple of different projects. It's always interesting for me to examine not just the broad statistics, but also the psychology behind how decisions are made and what the motivating factors are. Part of doing a comprehensive marketing assessment of your target audience is defining their demographics. Demographics considers factors like age, income level, marital status, geography, and profession.

But to truly paint a clear picture of your avatar or intended audience, it's necessary to take a look at the psychographics of your target market.

What exactly is psychographics?

I like to compare psychographics to demographics, which explains who your market audience is. Psychographics explains why your intended clients and customers make certain decisions.

For instance, let's pretend you are launching a business as a stylist to young career women who want to look on-trend, but don't feel they have the time to pull the best looks together. You may learn that your avatar is a professional millennial woman, between the ages of 25-34, who lives in a major metropolitan area of the United States and has an annual income in the range of $45,000-$58,000 from demographics. Psychographics tells you that she also likes to shop at boutique stores that carry indie brands and likes to buy things that give her good value for her money over status items at high-end designers.

In this made-up scenario, you're not only privy to information about how much she can afford, but also where she tends to shop and how she makes her decisions, giving you ample room to figure out where to market your stylist consultations, how to price your services and what types of clothing are better bets to recommend.

It's fairly clear that rounding out your market research with some psychographic information can be useful. From the example above, here are four ways psychographics can help your business:

1. Helps you determine what locations to target your marketing, whether they are physical or online. In the social media arena, you'll know whether your target market prefers sharing information via Facebook over Instagram or vice versa, for instance.

2. Helps you figure out appropriate price points for your service or business, not only in the realm of affordability, but also with regards to which specific products or services your target market is mostly likely to purchase.

3. Helps you determine if what you're selling, whether it's a service or product, will be marketable to who you intend to sell it to.

4. Psychographics also helps you determine how refinements could make your product or service even better for your intended audience. For instance, if you learn that your intended audience of millennial women is more prone to purchasing products made by companies which incorporate social causes, it may be worth your while to take note of those brands and offer them as options to your clientele.