US Demographics Summary

United States Demographic Summary

By Bert Shlensky, PhD

 Part of the Startup Connection Business Library

Copyright © 2014 by Bert Shlensky, PhD All Rights Reserved.

us demographics

Demographics Template Directions

One of the frustrating aspects of market research is estimating the market and narrowing it down.  For example:

  • There are about 315 million people in the U.S., split approximately equal between males and females, and 30-50% of whom are too poor to buy many products or services.   Approximately 40% of the U.S. population is between the prime purchasing ages of 25-54.  Thus, before one analyzes geography, lifestyles, ethnicity, etc., the total U.S. Market for many products and services that are for one gender or the other is really about only 30-40 million consumers.  You can see how rapidly your target customers and clients can be reduced by simply looking at the most basic of demographics.
  • Many market studies stop at this simple level of analysis, and they frequently fail to conduct further detailed segmentation, citing millions of potential customers in what are actually very narrow market segments.  In defining target consumers accurately and realistically, one must consider at least the following:
    • Age
    • Geography
    • Income & Lifestyle
    • Ethnic background
    • Education
    • Employment
  • The attached US Demographics Summary provides some basic information about the U.S.  It is a start.  You need to dissect further into your geography, your demographics, your income targets, and you’re buying characteristics.  Specifically, you need to estimate your potential market and how many customers you have. Per month? Per year?
  • The other aspect of demographics is that they are changing more radically than ever.  While many products and retail outlets are experiencing moderate or no growth, demographic changes are causing dramatic changes in certain niches;
    • Demographics – Women in the labor force labor force have increased 50 million workers since 1960, and went from 39% to 47% from 1980 to 2009.  Similarly, workers over 45 increased from 31% to 41% of the population.
    • Income – The top 1% of the population accounted for 60% of all such income in 2007, up from 50% in 1979.
    • Race –  Since 1990, the white population has decreased from 80% to 75%, and is also expected to continue to decline over the next several years.  In 2012, there will be more non-white births than white in the U.S.

In summary, expanding on this US Demographics Summary allows you to tailor your marketing tools to maximize current and potential market segments.


Please Download this Excel Spreadsheet as part of this lesson:


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Article Name
US Demographics Summary
One of the key startup requires is to understand your market niche and demographics. There are about 315 million people in the U.S., split approximately equal between males and females, and 30-50% of who are too poor to buy many products or services. The country is also simply getting older, more diverse, more ethnic, and more educated. This data which is summarized below is essential to determine your opportunities and constraints. It simply provides some examples from which you can drill down to identify your niche.