The Social Technographics Profile

The Social Technographics Profile

Hello all from snow filled Edmonton.

This past week has been quite a learning experience for myself, especially in my Social Media Marketing class.

Social Technographics Profile

This week we were tasked with reading chapter 3 of the book Groundswell; “The Social Technographics Profile”.  The social technographic profile isn’t something out of science fiction.   No it’s a way of understanding how people use social media technologies. The social technographic profile breaks down demographic information into several key Groundswell (social media) profiles.  These key groundswell profiles are the following:

  • Creators: People who at least once a month post a blog, upload video content to hosting sites, maintain their own website.
  • Conservationalists: People who engage in online conversations weekly.
  • Critics: People who post reviews/ratings of various products and or services, comment on other’s blogs/postings and contribute to forums and or wiki’s.
  • Collectors: People who save URL’s and tags or social media sites, vote online or use RSS feeds.
  • Joiners: People who maintain a profile on social networking sites (Facebook).
  • Spectators: People who consume online information posted by others.
  • Inactives: People who do not participate in social media activities.

Using these profiles, the Social Technographics Profile allows users of this information to “understand how social technologies are being adopted by any group of people” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 46).  Through the comparison of two different distinct groups of people, one can use the Social Technographics Profile to develop and align an appropriate social media strategy for their target market.

Social Technographics in Practice

To further explain the Social Technographics Profile I’m going to run you through a hypothetical example using my current employer, London Drugs.

The following is an example of what social technographics profile would look like for young Canadians.  For London Drugs, young Canadians may represent a new target market as the company attempts at the creation of customers for life.


Using this information, I could build and align a social media strategy specifically aimed towards a young target market.  For instance, 85% of people aged 18-24 in Canada are identified as being Joiners, I’d focus the social marketing efforts to creating and hosting content on social media sites like Facebook.  This strategy would allow London Drugs to reach out to the majority of young Canadians that are using social media platforms, with Facebook being the most popular.

This strategy for focusing efforts towards Facebook users may not be adequate to capturing other important target markets for London Drugs.  The following technographic profile details an age range of 35-44 in Canada, specifically males.


For London Drugs, males between the ages of 35-44 may represent professionals who may have considerable income at their disposal. The majority of males between 35-44 are identified under the technographic profile as being Spectators.  With this in mind, social media efforts may be targeted towards the creation of content showcasing items of interest that may interest male professionals.   This content would be hosted on sites like YouTube and Facebook; as it appears 54% of middle aged males still use social media, and would allow London Drugs to communicate its offering towards this important target market.

The two examples of social technographics can facilitate the creation of two different social media marketing strategies for London Drugs.


The Social Technographics Profile allows users to quickly understand how different demographics use and contribute to different social media activities.   Using this information, you can develop marketing strategies that are specific to each of your target markets.  Without using technographics you can risk using precious resources on social media initiatives that just don’t connect with your markets use of social technologies.


Li, C., & Bernoff, J. (2011). Groundswell. Boston: Harvard Business Review Press.



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