Did you know that marketers who conduct audience research are 3X more likely to achieve their marketing goals? And that a whopping 65% of marketers report doing audience research “rarely or never?’ 

Today’s consumers, especially parents, demand that brands not only accommodate their preferences but also make efforts to understand their values and beliefs. One of the ways marketers understand consumer preferences is through consumer insights, specifically audience segmentation. 

Your brand might cater to a general target audience, but there are rich complexities and subgroups within your consumer set – each with its own purchase motivations, shopping behavior, and lifestyles. Performing audience segmentation empowers you to identify these cohorts. 

What is Audience Segmentation Analysis and Why Do You Need It?  

Audience segmentation is the process of identifying and characterizing subgroups among your target consumer base so you can better understand them and market to them, in your community and other channels. 

Segments can be categorized by attitudinal traits, demographic characteristics, or shared behaviors. 

Audience segmentation helps you identify: 

  • New growth segments and understand how to talk to them, what they care about, and where to find them.  For example, it can save you from spending $$ on TV ads and then realizing your target segment are cord-cutters.
  • The “Size of the Prize” for each segment, helping you to prioritize your investments.

Once you determine the profile of your best consumers, you can laser-focus your targeting efforts to fit the criteria. Having a firm understanding of your audience segmentation can ensure you know how to best serve your consumer’s needs. 

When you employ audience segmentation in your marketing, you’ll be better armed to:

  • Drive revenue and brand advocacy by knowing who your best consumers are and where to find them
  • Generate higher conversion rates and more relevant messaging
  • Find new market opportunities and drive innovation

Why Use an Online Brand Community for Audience Segmentation? 

Trends evolve too fast for audience research to be done sporadically. If you often feel like you’re playing catchup with what your audience thinks about or how they behave, or you worry your consumers are catching feels for another brand, an online brand community enables fast, efficient, connected, and continuous insights.  

The bottom line is that rapid change in consumer behavior is the norm now. Seismic changes have made previous insights obsolete. If your consumer research isn’t always-on and done in real-time, your brand is at risk. 

An online brand community is an efficient channel for always-on audience research that you own. They deliver insights more quickly, easily, and efficiently, with the ability to achieve richer learnings by following your audience and connecting your data over time.  

The Proof is in the Pudding: Using Audience Segmentation to Win Back-to-School Messaging 

While the words “Back-to-School” won’t be uttered by consumers for many more months, marketers are already abuzz with planning creative strategies to capture market share and reinforce brand loyalty during this massive spending period. 

The projected amount for 2021 Back-to-School spending was +16% YOY, and with many classrooms officially going “Back-to-Normal,” 2022 is shaping up to be a big year. It’s critical to understand the complex audience of parents who will be leading the back-to-school spending charge. 

We tapped into a TINT-powered online community to conduct an Audience Segmentation Analysis study surveying 5,300+ consumers. We designed a questionnaire on parenting values and behavior for consumers and then we ran the data through our proprietary insights process to identify and segment similar cohorts. 

We identified 5 key parenting segments and how brands can cater marketing messages to achieve the greatest awareness and conversion. Our recommendations leverage these insights to guide you in how to build trust and market share this back-to-school season. 

  • Discover research-based Back-to-School messaging that caters to specific parenting styles and values including social/emotional connection, academic performance, heritage, tradition, and independence
  • Learn the Do’s and Don’ts: what mistakes you might be making with parents and how to avoid them
  • Empower your brand with how to maximize your agile marketing efforts through audience segmentation and other online community-powered insights tools

Here’s an example of a parenting segment you’ll learn about: 


Attentive Parents 

Representing a little more than a quarter (26%) of parenting styles, Attentive Parents are highly invested in their children’s interests, education, and emotions. This cohort wants the most up-to-date childcare products. They closely monitor and regulate their children’s use of screens and video games, and out of all parenting segments, they are the most concerned about COVID-19’s impact on both their child’s education and social/emotional state.


  • Employ messaging that helps to connect parents with their child’s interests and emotional state
  • Use a reassuring tone, confidently offer valuable parenting advice and expertise
  • Engage with a brand-owned Online Community where they can connect with other Parents, provide educational tools, tips & tricks


  • Assert parents’ or children’s independence too strongly
  • Minimize the challenges that parents and children have faced due to COVID
  • Encourage extended screen time for children

Talking Back-to-School

  • These parents are concerned with their children’s socialization and emotional state as well as their education. Highlight how back-to-school (BTS) is a critical socialization opportunity, and how your brand can ease this transition and place them in the best position for social/emotional success
  • Since these parents want the latest & greatest products for their children, BTS represents an opportunity to remind these parents that reusing products from last year will not be sufficient and they need to upgrade

Find out more ways to use a community for audience insights with our latest article on Market Research Online Communities (MROC) or talk to our experts about your brand’s insight needs. 

Interested in more?

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VP, Product Strategy