Social Technographics and the Groundswell.

Hello everyone and welcome to my blog #2!

This week I did some reading on a concept called Social Technographics, from Chapter 3 of the book Groundswell by Charlene Li & Josh Bernoff. To summarize from what I understand, Social Technographics aim to classify and segment internet users based on the way they use social technology. The book breaks these down into seven categories:

  1. Creator – Create/publish their own work (i.e. videos, blogs etc.)
  2. Conventionalist – Posts & updates their status
  3. Critics – Rate & review online material
  4. Collectors – Use RSS feeds, vote online & tag various pages/photos
  5. Joiners – Maintains a profile & visits social media sites
  6. Spectators – Read and listens to various social media & forums (i.e. tweets, blogs etc.)
  7. Inactives – Do not participate in the online world

Although it is broken down into seven categories, it is associated with being more like a ladder (see picture below) allowing for categories to overlap – “most Creators are also Spectators” (Li & Bernoff, 2011).


Applying this concept to a company like the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), the technographic profile of their target market would be very broad and does not focus on a specific age or gender, thus a consumer profile analysis of Canada as a whole is analysed:


From this analysis, we can see that the majority of the Canadian population choose to be more of a spectator, which reads or listens to online information, as well as joiners, who like to visit and maintain online profiles.


Li, C. & Bernoff, J. (2011). Groundswell: Winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing.

Marketing4Health. (2010). Do canadian patients trust others like them? Retrieved from


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