Industry Insights

What Are The 5 Categories of Audience Analysis?


What is Audience Analysis, and Why is it Important? 

The process of audience analysis consists of identifying the values, needs, interests, and behaviors of your target audience. Conducting audience analysis empowers organizations because it helps ascertain what their target audience genuinely cares deeply about. Knowing what drives a target audience allows businesses to tailor campaigns to align with their tested mission and vision, enabling them to better serve their intended consumer base. Let’s learn more about the five categories of audience analysis.

The 5 Categories of Audience Analysis

As a researcher, it is vital to analyze your target audience based on demographics, psychographics, behaviors, geography, and culture. Let’s break it down a bit further.

Demographic Analysis

Who Are Your Audience Members? Consider age, gender, race, culture, ethnicity, marital status, socioeconomic conditions, education, occupation, etc. For example, if you are researching alcoholic drinks, you want to ensure you’re targeting consumers of appropriate drinking age. Analyzing the demographics of your audience can save you time and resources, ensuring that your research is targeted to the right individuals.

Psychographic Analysis

What Are Their Attitudes and Values? Does this audience have a preconceived notion about your brand? What are their opinions? This analysis requires you to understand the thinking patterns of your audience. Therefore, it is essential to ask questions that will reveal misconceptions about your product and any preconceived stereotypes or prejudiced ideas regarding your organization. By solidly understanding the psychographics of your audience, you can tailor messaging and campaigns to appeal to their value system, resulting in increased engagement and ROI.

Behavioral Analysis

How Do They Behave? This analysis reveals how your audience behaves with different products and services and how often they purchase. For instance, a person who purchases coffee daily before work will respond better to a coffee shop promotion than a person who prefers to make their cup of joe at home. Knowing our audience’s behaviors can help organizations curate a better customer experience. 

Geographic Analysis

Where are They Located? For instance, if you are a surfboard company, you’d likely have higher success marketing to individuals who live along the coast versus midwestern states that may not have access to waves. A sound geographic analysis and how this influences your audiences’ buying habits allows you to target your research and campaigns to individuals in areas that will benefit from them the most.

Cultural Analysis

Who are They? This requires analyzing the range of cultures and backgrounds your campaign affects and tailoring your messaging to be diverse and inclusive. In addition, tying in behavioral and psychographic analysis as well as using language that isn’t discriminatory will result in a positive reaction to your campaign. 

Why should you conduct audience analysis before developing a research plan? 

Understanding your audience is paramount in both market research and business strategy. Before conducting research, you should be able to determine the target age group of your audience, their familiarity with the topic or product, their needs, what they expect, and attributes of their attitudes, values, and beliefs. Knowing these attributes about your audience will allow your organization to understand how to engage and identify its target audience correctly and effectively. Effective targeting will improve the impact of your messaging and could influence your audience’s purchasing behavior in a way that positively impacts your organization. You won’t get the best insights if you run a survey on individuals with a vegan diet on the best flavor additive for bacon. Audience analysis is necessary for all market research professionals to do before developing a full-scale survey project as it ensures the most efficient use of resources. 

Tips for Effective Audience Analysis

Here are some tips for analyzing your audience effectively. 

Identify your Audience

The most important step in audience analysis is knowing who your target audience actually is. Identify your audience by considering traits such as age, gender education, occupation, cultural background, interests, habits and beliefs.

Conduct Research

After you have identified your target audience, get to know them by doing research about their behaviors, characteristics, preferences and needs. This research can be done through various methods such as focus groups, surveys, interviews, and observational studies. 

Analyze Your Research Findings

Analyzing your research can help you identify characteristics of your audience such as motivations, interests and priorities This will help you find common themes and patterns amongst your target audience that you can tailor your message to. 

Tailor Your Message

Use the insights you’ve gained in your research to tailor your messaging to your audience. This can affect the tone, delivery and language that is best suited for your communication. 

Message Testing

If possible, conduct message testing with a small group prior to delivering your message publicly. This can allow you to identify and adjust any areas that may need improvement.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Here are some common mistakes to avoid when conducting your audience analysis. 

Making Assumptions

It is important to conduct thorough research on your audience and collect enough data to support any conclusions you may come to about them before jumping to early conclusions.

Having Too Narrow of a Focus

Consider all factors that may affect how your audience will receive your message. Focusing too narrowly on one or two factors such as age or income could be detrimental to how your message will land with other potential viewers.

Failing to Acknowledge Diversity

Everyone is different, and DEI must be at the heart of your strategy. Consider all of the factors that make your audience diverse and factor this into their communication preferences. 

Ignoring Feedback

Take your audience’s feedback seriously. Their responses can help you improve your messaging so be sure to incorporate their feedback into your adjustments. 

Lack of Adaptability

As your audience changes, your messaging will need to adapt to meet their evolving needs and preferences. 


Having a sound audience analysis strategy will benefit your market research and further your business goals. Tying in all the elements of audience analysis will enable you to tailor your research to your target audience and pinpoint tactics that you can use to better meet your audience’s needs. Demographics, psychographics, behaviors, and geographic and cultural analysis will help you curate the best research experience possible, and ultimately, the best fit customer. The next time you are drafting your next campaign or putting together a survey, be sure to include these 5 categories of audience analysis. 

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