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The Significance of Demographic Analysis in Market Research

By: Toby Finden-Crofts


Every company and brand are influenced by what people think, but it’s what your target client base think that really tells you how to run your business. That’s why demographics, or information about your audience, are so important in marketing research.

If you want to capture more of your industry’s market, you must make demographics a vital part of your market research plan.


Understanding the Basics: What Are Demographics?

Simply put, the term demographic refers to specific groups or varieties of people within a population. This can include age, sex, race, religion or education, amongst other more specific categories such as marital status, type of employment or income.


Identifying Key Demographic Factors for Your Market Study

By looking at your current user base, you can already form an idea of what factors you should be looking for. If you don’t already have a client base (i.e. you are launching a new company or product), look instead to your competitors or brands with a similar audience to yours. Look at their marketing campaigns, the types of language they use in their branding or even the price of their products. No matter how similar, different brands will cater to slightly different demographics, so whilst the data from your competitors may not be precise, it can still help you get an idea of your audience.


Why Demographic Data Is Important in Research

It’s important to know exactly what key demographics are relevant to your study, or you could find yourself wasting precious time and resources on data that doesn’t matter. For example, in a commerce setting, if you’re asking 100 people if they’d buy x product, and half say yes and half say no, there’s very little one can do with that information because it doesn’t give you a clear picture.

If you break it down and discover that almost all of the people that said yes are under the age of 40, very easily you can understand a clearer idea of your target audience, and that you clearly have a product favoured by the younger generation, If you break that down even further with financial insights and discover that of the 50 of people that said yes, 30 make between £50-100k per year, you have an even clearer picture of the audience.

So you could safely assume that advertising to over 50’s on a low income would be less beneficial. Identifying demographics in your research allows you to paint a much clearer and detailed picture of the data you’re receiving, especially on a larger scale.


How To Do a Demographic Analysis

There are a variety of ways to do Demographic Analysis. You can start by using secondary research, which means gathering pre-existing data from other sources. This can be via articles, studies, surveys, or even interviews. You can then use this data to start identifying clearer client segments. Now you’re able to use market research services to begin your primary research.

As well as sending out surveys and questionnaires via an online platform, make sure you’re also sending them to specific people, such as past clients or people on a pre-existing marketing/newsletter email list. Sending follow-up surveys is essential, or at the very least asking follow-up questions that seek further explanation on your earlier inquiries. This gives you deeper detail on the answers you’ve received and an even clearer picture of the data you’re gathering.


Exploring Demographic Shifts: Adapting Research to Changing Trends

In a world where technology, entertainment and business trends change and shift almost overnight, it can be difficult to understand exactly what the world wants. For instance, in the world of financial research, the general public’s spending/earning habits will have greatly changed post-Covid. More people will be working remotely, so the spending habits they may have initially had during travel and office time, will have changed drastically as office work reduces and the world changes. It’s important to continually refresh and update the demographic data you have over time, as your target audience may change more frequently than you would expect.


Measuring Success: Tracking Outcomes from Demographic Analysis

It’s important to track outcomes from your research because it gives you an even clearer idea of what you can do next with your data. It allows marketing teams to understand who their target audience is, and whether their previous efforts have been a success.

With Research in Finance, you can be sure to receive accurate up to date financial insights from experts with extensive knowledge in your selected sector. Our experience surveying and speaking with thousands of consumers, industry professionals and financial markets and services makes us a trusted partner to both our clients and our research panellists.