Confused about Qualifiers

(Suzi Nelson) #1

Hey gang!

I’m going through the Start an Online Community Course and just went over the “Audience Analysis: Demographics” video and my brain is a little unclear on the definition of a qualifier.

Are “qualifiers” the same thing as the “boundaries” discussed in first section? Like “men who like comic books who live in Colorado” or is it an action that people take to signify they are interested in your company, like follow you on social media or sign up for emails?

(Sarah Hawk) #2

Hi Suzi,

A qualifier is an identifier that groups a person into an appropriate demographic. Location could be a qualifier (for a local school or sports team community for eg) or it could be a more specific action that people take to demonstrate strong interest in a subject (eg: sign up to receive a newsletter, follow social media). The more qualifier groups a person falls into, the stronger their likelihood to become an engaged community member.

To take your examples:

[quote=“Suzi_Nelson, post:1, topic:2277”]
men who like comic books who live in Colorado
[/quote] Being a man, liking comic books, and living in Colorado are all qualifiers.

Following on social media, or signing up for emails are further qualifiers.

Does that make sense?

(Suzi Nelson) #3

Derp! Yes, that makes sense. I was trying to group them into two separate groups. Thanks for clarifying!

(Sarah Hawk) #4

All good. :slight_smile:

I actually went back and listened to that lesson just now and it’s a bit ambiguous in that when Caty first introduces the concept, she calls them identifiers rather than qualifiers.

(Suzi Nelson) #5

I wanted to ask one more question related to this. As you know, our communities are product-based, meaning members have to have purchased something in order to join. Does that count as a “habits” boundary?

(Sarah Hawk) #6

Hey Suzi,
Buying something doesn’t necessarily mean you want to talk about it or have a strong interest in the topic beyond purchasing.

Habit qualifiers tend to be more along the lines of what time they buy (i.e do they do their buying at the office or in the evening), what sorts of things they buy.

I’m not sure that I’ve actually answered your question here though. Can you clarify what you’re asking?

(Suzi Nelson) #7


So our community is made up of people who have purchased a subscription to what is basically training in digital marketing tactics. Subscription also includes access to a members-only group. I think the original idea was a support system where people could ask questions about the material and our staff can answer, but over the last year it’s really involved in a true community where members are mainly connecting with each other.

We define it as “the go-to community for answers to any questions related to digital marketing and growing your business online” - but its only for DM Lab members.

In terms of “boundaries,” I was wondering where the product-purchase fell (or it if qualifies as a boundary at all).

(Todd Nilson) #8

Hi Suzi, been following this discussion over my morning coffee. I’d chime in to say that a product purchase qualifies as a boundary most readily if the buyers has somehow tied his or her identity to is, say in the way that people tend to associate their identity with brands like Apple or BMW. For most of us, I would not consider a product purchase a strong boundary. I might ask what else distinguishes those who subscribe from other digital marketers? How do you define this in-group? I suspect it has something to do with their career-mindedness or level of ambition in many cases but you may have other notions about that being closer to the situation.

(Suzi Nelson) #9

Thanks for that insight, Todd. Your comment gave me some great ideas in further defining our community members - something I think I can use to position our marketing message when we focus on getting more purchasers to join the group. Golden!