You’re offering courses online. You think the content is relevant. So, where are your learners? Maybe it’s time to assess your eLearning course audience. You might not be familiar with market segmentation or demographic and psychographic research, but without them, chances are your bottom line will suffer. But that’s okay, help has arrived to get you started, marketing style.
Market segmentation is the process of breaking your potential audience up into groups that have similar needs. The four basic market segmentation strategies are based on:
- Behavioral differences
- Demographic differences
- Psychographic differences
- Geographical differences
Suppose your association caters to nonprofits seeking to learn more about fundraising and development. The types of people who would need this information are varied. Are you targeting board members and development directors with the same messaging? How about volunteers within the organization? Each of these segments requires a different marketing message to reach them. If I was a board member, I might want to make sure my team is doing all they can for the organization, whereas a development director might be looking for new ideas to implement, and the volunteer might simply want to know more about how fundraising works. Should they all take the same course? How does the course apply? If you don’t segment your audience and target the individuals who will benefit the most from your offerings, this could explain why your course audience is lacking.
Demographics and Psychographics
Demographics are segments based on age, income, education, gender, race, ethnicity, etc. For example, in marketing we may speak of baby boomer, upper-middle class, college educated, females as a target audience. We have segmented this group into a demographic profile. Why does it matter? We can assume certain traits are similar among members of this demographic group and can create marketing messages based on those similarities. For example, did you know that before the 2008 recession in baby boomers possessed “three-quarters of the nation’s financial assets “and an estimated $1 trillion in annual disposable income?
Psychographics refers to attitudes, beliefs, lifestyles, etc. For example, did you know that millennials are active in their communities? In fact, the 2013 Millennial Impact Report revealed that “73% of millennials surveyed volunteered for a non-profit in 2012.” Did you know that Generation X is the first generation that was largely a product of divorce. As a result, this generation was more cautious, less concerned with maintaining the status quo, and married later in life than prevoious generations. If demographics tell you what people are, then psychographics tell you who they are.
It’s Not You, It’s Me
Confession: maybe it’s not the eLearning course audience that isn’t interested. Maybe the value proposition isn’t interesting. But if you target your courses to the right audience, and create messages that resonate with the segment that values your offerings the most, your level of success is likely to rise. So, when your courses aren’t selling like they used to, it’s time to evaluate your marketing segmentation and assess your eLearning course audience.
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