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audience mapping

Audience mapping identifies your key audiences and gauges their general interests so you can better reach and engage them. There are 4 questions one must ask throughout the audience map process. 

  1. What’s my purpose? This question dives into the goals the organization has whether that be audience, product or campaign related. 

  2. Who am I serving? Here, you will identify and learn about specific audiences that you want to reach and engage. This is when you will establish your primary and secondary audiences. 

  3. How will I reach/engage them? Map out a content or product plan that aligns with your goals and your audience’s goals to best reach and engage them. 

  4. How will I measure success? This is where you will track the efficiency of your work and document these findings.  
















The audience map process is best explained through 4 steps. 

Step 1: What do you know about your current audience? 


In this step, you will want to analyze your current audience. This can be done through demographic and psychographic analyses of your audience. Topics of interest during a demographic and psychographic analysis may include but is not limited to age, gender, race, geolocation and current interests. 

Another way of analyzing your audience would be through a content analysis. This can be done through website and platform analytics tracking the number of page views, unique visitors, types and sources of traffic and reader behavior. 

Lastly, one can analyze an audience through a platform analysis. This information can be found through Facebook and Instagram Insights and Twitter Analytics. Here you will find more information on your user demographics and engagement. Google Analytics, Hootsuite, Claritas 360 and Crimson Hexagon are great tools in finding this information. 


It is imperative in step 1 to consider what your goals are. 


Step 2: Who do you want to reach/serve? 


One must consider their goals and decide if these goals are audience or product related. If they are audience related, consider a platform audience that you hope to grow and engage and then ask yourself what you know about that audience. This could include audiences from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.  

Product development takes a different approach. If your goal is product related, decide what action you want your users to take and if there is a specific audience segment you hope to serve. Following this, analyze how their consumption habits differ from your overall audience. 


Step 3: How will you reach/engage them? 


Here, you will create a content calendar with outlines of all your major content elements with tentative publish and launch dates for each. Along with this, you want to include major project milestones that are essential for your goals to be reached. Search engine optimization (SEO) is important here. 

  • SEO headlines are meant for finding  

  • Think nouns: these should include the people, places and things most relevant to your company. 

  • The most important keywords go at the front of your headline 

  • Not sure which keywords to focus on? Pretend like you are searching for your own product, service or campaign – what words would you use to find it? 

  • Social headlines are meant for sharing. When deciding on a social headline, ask yourself these two questions: 

  • Why should people care about this? 

  • What is the most relevant and/or interesting detail about this product, service, campaign or story? 

Step 4: How will I measure my success? 


This is where your qualitative and quantitative research and analytics come into play. Prior to starting your project or campaign, make a list of qualitative and quantitative goals that you hope to achieve as a measure for your success. This could include social media engagement, increased subscriptions or membership, growth in revenue and newsletter signups. 


Home Depot Example 


  • Current audience: Home Depot’s current audience consist of do-it-yourself customers such as business or home owners looking to purchase and install products themselves, individuals looking for installation services and professional customers such as contactors, builders, interior designers and more.  

  • Men spend, on average, 30% more than women at Home Depot. 

  • The average age of a Home Depot shopper is 50 years old and the average income is $60,800. 

  • Audience Home Depot hopes to reach/serve: For the purpose of this post, the audience that Home Depot hopes to reach/serve is college students. The goal is to expand its audience to a younger generation through better engaging them on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. 

  • How Home Depot will reach/engage them: Home Depot’s current social media platforms are tailored primarily towards families and adults with a salary. Home Depot would increase the interest of college students through providing more engaging and interactive posts. Some examples may be: 

  • Content on how to enhance a small space 

  • Ways you can change the style of your bedroom with Home Depot products 

  • How-to posts (i.e. how to build your own desk, how to build a frame for a mirror, etc.) 

  • Measured success: If Home Depot took this approach, the metrics available for comparison would be primarily social media related and could be discovered through content and platform analyses. The company may analyze whether or not there has been an increase in a younger demographic shopping at its stores as well. 


Overall, audience mapping is important because it allows an organization to tailor its content to fit the needs of its primary and secondary audiences. 

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