How to target your online audience in a more effective way.

After reading chapter 3 from the book Groundswell, I have learned some valuable information on how to effectively target an online audience using social media. Regardless of what industry you may be seeking to engage, a new way of seeing who is actively participating online is through using a tool called Social Technographic Profile. Social Technographic Profiles are a way of categorizing people based on the groundswell activities that they are active in.

The book breaks down 7 key profiles:

Creators: Individuals who have an active online presence, who blog, publish articles, maintain webpages and upload videos and pictures to sites like YouTube.

Conversationalists: Individuals who participate in back and forth discussions on various different social media platforms, like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Critics: Individuals who analyze, comment, and react to forums, blogs and postings.

Collectors: Individuals who acquire a bunch on material on a certain subject, and once acquired use tags, and other bookmarking types to collectively organize a bunch of informational content.

Joiners: Individuals who participate in social media platform such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and twitter.

Spectators: Individuals who consume what is produce online.  Whether that be on Facebook, YouTube or any other social media platform.

Inactives: Individuals who do not participate in social media technologies.

To illustrate how people use Social Technographic Profiles to come up with an appropriate social strategy, I will give an example of an industry I would like to be in. As mentioned in my last blog I would like to pursue the financial service industry as a financial planner. First off by going to forester’s webpage I have put in a range in age in which I feel people are seeking financial services. I will further discuss these illustrations above.

The reason why I chose the 35-44 demographic range was due to the fact that this is when individuals start having a positive net worth. An individual who has acquired school debt and has a mortgage may not have much capital to invest. It may be more beneficial to pay off any debts before seeking financial services such as asset allocation. At the demographic range of 35-44 I feel is where individuals for the most part having a steady income and can start putting aside cash for investing and retirement planning.

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As the illustrations above depicts, middle aged males and females have a higher expectancy to spectate rather than engaging with content. When seeing that 70% of males and 59% of females are spectators, versus 20% male and 15% female’s creator one has to engage the target audience. They aren’t so much creating new information or looking for the products. You have to be the creator by using social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook and blogs to get individuals aware about your product and how it could benefit them.  You have to seek out your audience and be active rather than let them find you.


Forrester Research. (2009). Forrester Research’s Consumer Technographics Data. Retrieved October 4, 2014, from Forresters Research:

Kaplan, A., & Haenlein, M. (2010). Users of the World, Unite! The Challenges and Opportunities of Social Media. Business Horizons, 53(1), 59-68.

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