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How to Build Attitudinal Personas for Effective Audience Segmentation [Podcast]

When you meet someone, knowing their age, gender, and location is hardly an introduction, but in many meeting rooms around the world, these demographics are considered “targeted personas.” The issue with this is that in order to maximize the impact of your marketing efforts, you need to have a deep understanding of your audience.

To effectively target and reach your audience, you must go beyond the traditional demographic information. For this week’s guest on the Conex Show, that means conducting extensive surveys of a large enough population to build what she calls “attitudinal personas.”

Susan Baier, Head Honcho at Audience Audit, joins the Content Experience Show to discuss better audience segmentation through attitudinal personas.

In This Episode:

Meaningful Information for Segmentation

Baier says that the way most organizations segment—age, gender, and interests—is unhelpful to most marketers. She explains her approach to segmentation, which is based on how people feel about a category, their capabilities to make a decision within that category, and the kinds of attitudes they have about hiring somebody or buying something.

“We do segmentation based on how people feel about a category and about their capabilities to make a decision within that category. Nine and a half times out of ten, those things don’t have anything to do with what people look like on paper.”


Conducting Research to Build Attitudinal Personas

There are lots of ways to get information from people—focus groups, interviews, surveys—but the method you choose really depends on the type of information you’re looking for and how you’re going to use it. When you’re collecting data to use for marketing strategies, Baier points out that large-scale surveys are best, so that you can get a diverse pool of people answering your questions.

“Survey research has opportunities to get answers from folks that they wouldn’t necessarily give you if they were right in front of you or on the phone with you.” — @susanbaier

Balancing “Deep Dives” with Archetypal Personas

Sometimes marketers make personas complicated because they feel like they have to, Baier explains. It’s not practical for a business to have 30—or even 10—different in-depth personas. They’ll never actually get used.

“People often make the mistake of thinking that personas only affect marketing.” — @susanbaier

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For more insights from your favorite marketers, visit the Conex: The Content Experience Show stream.

About the Author

After 5 years as our CMO, I moved to focus on engaging with our community. This could be a customer or someone just dipping their toes into Content Experience. I am here to guide you, but more likely learn from you and share it back. As Chief Evangelist, I want to bridge your stories so we create a better content experience and in turn customer experience (CX). The term “evangelism” actually comes from Greek history and the three words of 'bringing good news'. This is my goal - to bring good news to you every day. It could be a customer story you could learn from or a simple upbeat thought to get you out of a rut.

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