Demographics and Psychographics in Marketing

Marketing is a lot of Subjective “Guess Work”.  We get it…  

Sometimes you even pay to figure out what doesn’t work.  It can be very frustrating.

But technology and “Big Data” (There’s that word again) can remove a ton of that frustration.

It’s no secret that matching your marketing message to your marketing segment is a classic one-two punch strategy that works.  It’s the best way to find the hand-raisers and referrals you are looking for.

Before big data entered the arena however, that was a strategy that was often more guess-work than real science. Fortunately, with the advance of data research and the folks over at Nielson, PRIZM Data makes finding those segments of the consumer population a whole lot easier!

As a general rule of thumb, the term ‘demographic’ refers to an individual or group’s physical traits: location, ethnicity, gender, age, etc. The term ‘psychographic’ will generally refer to the same individual or group’s mode of thinking.

So, something like how they spend their money, what they like and dislike, and how they “tick.”

As customer needs become more specific and complex, you will need start using both target demographics AND a target psychographic in your marketing plan.

Increasing Direct Mail Response Rates with Demographics and Psychographics

The use of demographics and psychographics can play an important part in targeted postcard marketing when fine-tuning the audience for your postcards.

Assume you are trying to market a new men’s gym. With the correct demographic data you can specifically target local households that have male residents between the age of 18 and 60. With the right psychographics data, you can zoom in on those residents who have been shown to have an interest in health, fitness or self-improvement, or are more likely to be interested in them. Targeting just these households will see your marketing costs go right down, and your response rates shoot right up.

Mixing Demographics and Psychographics

Although demographic and psychographics are two different marketing data collection methodologies, they do share some similarities. For example, one can infer through cultural stereotypes that men are not interested in the “best birth control pill for your body” as men do not generally take hormonal birth control.

What one is doing here is taking largely demographic data and converting it to psychographic data by simply having a basic understanding of general human rules and cultural stereotypes. This understanding, although not always necessarily the most politically correct to publish, can have a tremendous impact on a small business’ profit margin if performed correctly and the data is accurate.

Some large companies have whole departments dedicated to finding both psychographic and demographic data and use this to their advantage. The fact is, with this information the opportunities for targeted growth are almost endless.

With today’s technology, you can leveraging both target demographics and psychographics, with one simple click of a mouse.

Head over to and take a look through all the data segments we have available.

From the basic – High income consumers, baby boomers, etc. to the customized PRIZM selects – you can find the folks you most want to work with.

You can also head over to see a comprehensive, detailed listing of PRIZM code data segments here.

For a great resource to help you use all the tools at your fingertips, visit the Resources page on

There you’ll see how to easily match the free reports that are available with the postcards that work for the demographics you like!  Need help? Give our team a call at 877-222-6010


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