What is Audience Marketing?

24th October 2017

Static methods of audience marketing look at demographics –age, gender and geography– to segment consumers. Demographic analysis has become the norm in digital marketing, which has led to users and consumers who do not fit those segments being disregarded.

This missed potential is referred to in marketing as “valuable wastage,” since this method of audience targeting can miss out on many potential leads, customers and awareness of advertising campaigns.

Enter Audience Marketing, which takes a different approach to targeting: companies engaging in audience marketing consider the behaviors, perceptions and mindsets of people throughout all demographic cohorts and target them according to those characteristics in both message and delivery. 

For instance, if 2 people in different demographics (age range, city, or both) show similar behavior and mindsets which resonates with a certain campaign, an audience marketing-driven company would include them in the targeting, and not discard them based on their age alone.




Important Characteristics for Audience Marketing

These three characteristics can be combined to identify your audience, splitting them into sub-categories that are much narrower than what traditional demographic targeting would allow.

Here's a rundown:

Behaviors: the audience is showing a particular interest in your product or service area, through actions such as sharing certain articles or searching for specific retailers. This could indicate that they are close to buy or have recently bought a product in your relevant category.

Perceptions: They present their views about topics relating to your campaign, whether positive, negative or neutral – as measured by sentiment analysis. They may be more emotional about a certain topic, posting multiple times about it. 

Moments: People display distinct emotions and opinions when they are in specific moments in time, be it commuting or having a cup of joe at a coffee shop. Audiences  may share their annoyance or joy about being in these scenarios, which can be used to narrow down your campaign to a single one of these moments. This will give your campaign the maximum impact on your audience.

The power of social data

Social data allows you to identify these audiences and discover their interests and mindsets through the public conversations they are having. This provides insights which can inform insight discovery, campaign strategy and content creation.

In terms of campaign strategy, audience marketing techniques allow for a bolder creative direction and messaging, tailored much more sharply to the audience's interests and affinities. Marketers are safe in the knowledge that the strategy is based on true insights from social data, the largest, always-one dataset on consumer behaviors and attitudes.

Using an audience marketing approach also provides opportunities for saving money by avoiding expensive un-engaging campaigns and products,

Finally, using the 3 characteristics set out above, marketers can also identify emerging audiences that show signs of moving into their focus and engage them with relevant content and tone in order to fuel additional growth.

The changing face of marketing

Marketing campaigns are moving away from demographic targeting and focusing more on specific audiences. With a wealth of public data available from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube along with news, blogs, forums and review sites, planners can identify their audience for their campaign and tailor ads and content to maximize engagement.

As we gain access to more data, we must keep in mind that finding out details about your audience is only half the battle. The key to successful campaigns will continue to rely on great insights and imaginative creative that engages your audience at multiple levels. 


If you would like to harness the power of audience marketing, you can book a demo with Pulsar here.

We'll give you a tour of our audience intelligence platform and of the research and strategy services that power many of the world's best brands and agencies. You can also get in touch with us at [email protected].