What is a Consumer Community?

Consumer communities are groups united by an aspect of their identity that marketers can target to win their business.

Personalization Rooted in Identity

Celebrate What Makes Your Customers Special

A consumer community is a group of people who share a meaningful attribute that is central to their identity, such as their life stage or occupation. Some common examples are students, seniors, teachers, nurses, and first responders.

Consumer communities can also be formed by a common affiliation, in the way that service members, veterans, and their families are all part of the military consumer community. Even people joined together by a shared passion, such as members of the Sierra Club or a political party, can be a consumer community.

Leverage Human Networks

We all have an innate desire to feel connected to groups we identify with, such as our schools, professions, and workplaces. The experiences we share create a sense of trust and kinship with everyone in the group.

When a brand recognizes these groups as consumer communities, it can create more personal exchanges with them. And when consumer communities feel recognized by a brand, they respond with greater loyalty.

Social media accelerates identity marketing by giving brands many ways to connect with consumer communities, and giving members unlimited potential to connect with each other and to share their brand experiences.

Consumer Communities Activate Word of Mouth

Quality Data for Quality Relationships

Move Beyond Traditional Segmentation

Demographic data like gender, income range, and zip code isn’t accurate enough to qualify prospects, most of whom don’t know each other or have much in common.

Behavioral data offers brands some consumer intelligence, but it’s unverified, quickly out of date, and collected in ways that erode people’s trust. And neither of these approaches reliably reflect a prospect’s intent to purchase.

With identity marketing, consumers explicitly request their identity to be verified to receive rewards from the brand. This zero-party data gives brands meaningful insight into their customers’ values, lifestyles, and preferences.

Consumer Communities and the Next Wave of Personalization

Identity marketing is a customer acquisition strategy that transcends the limitations of traditional segmentation. Instead of targeting groups of people based on weak attributes like their zip code, brands can provide personalized offers to consumer communities based on identity attributes that unite them. Brands that use identity marketing can increase conversions by 6x and see ROAS as high as 25:1.

Launch an Identity Marketing Campaign in 3 Easy Steps


A company creates and promotes an exclusive offer for a consumer community that aligns with its brand.


Consumers opt-in to redeem the offer and are digitally verified by an verification platform to ensure the offer’s integrity and prevent discount abuse.


Brands use this zero-party data to communicate, drive repeat purchases, and build lifetime value.

Consumer Tribes Collage from SheerID

Reach 2.5 Billion Consumers

When you market to consumer communities, you can reach shoppers of all ages and experiences. And you can engage them year-round by running campaigns during the holidays that celebrate them, such as National Nurses Day and Teacher Appreciation Week.

Harness the Power of Consumer Communities

Consumer Tribe Stats from SheerID
Build Intense Customer Loyalty

Marketing to consumer communities creates an emotional bond with customers because it recognizes important aspects of their identity. And when your offer is truly exclusive to the group, it becomes more attractive and makes members feel special. This creates a meaningful brand relationship that keeps customers coming back.

Female on phone fro SheerID
Generate Incredible Word of Mouth

Consumer communities have strong networks, and when members discover companies that support them, they spread the word. An exclusive offer can easily go viral, amplifying your campaign, and lowering your acquisition costs.

1 in 2 Teachers from SheerID
Increase Revenue

Customers buy from the brands they prefer, and research shows that personalized offers to consumer communities increase purchase behavior. More than 60% of the military and nearly 70% of students said receiving an exclusive offer would make them shop with a brand more often.

Tuft & Needle mattress from SheerID
Leverage Cause Marketing

Consumers want to purchase from brands that reflect their values. Supporting consumer communities with personalized offers and programs that show you care about their concerns can make your brand stand out from competitors and inspire true loyalty.

Chipotle 4 Heroes Campaign from SheerID
Create a Halo Effect

Honoring a consumer community raises brand awareness among people associated with its members, such as a student or teacher’s family. And it generates goodwill in the community who supports them, such as people who appreciate the service provided by medical workers and first responders.


“Our teacher discount is one way we show our commitment to educators, as we serve as the go-to headquarters to help them create one-of-a-kind environments that are creative and inspiring places for students to learn.”

Steve Carlotti
Executive Vice President of Marketing
Michaels Logo from SheerID

“SheerID provided a 100% guarantee that only students could redeem the offer, which gave us the confidence to make it really appealing to Gen Z without any fear of losing revenue to discount abuse.”

Cheri Davies
Senior Director of Acquisition Marketing
Comcast Logo from SheerID

“SheerID is helping us acquire and retain customers with personalized offers that acknowledge people’s unique identities and the contributions they make to our communities.”

Jon Pickard
Senior Manager of eCommerce
Targus Logo from SheerID
Tuft & Needle

“We can leverage the information that we're getting from the customers who have used SheerID to find lookalikes and others who fall into the same grouping.”

Torrie Belknap
VP of Marketing
Tuft & Needle Logo from SheerID

Find Your Consumer Community

Consumer communities come from all walks of life. The first step in finding the ones that align with your brand is understanding who they are and the potential they offer your company.

The Military is Both Diverse and United

Nearly half of active-duty soldiers are under 25 years old, 18% of AC commissioned officers are female, and more than half of veterans are over 65. That seems like a disparate group, but serving in the military brings them together, and they all like when companies honor their service. Nearly 75% of the military said they actively seek out brands that offer military discounts, and more than 60% said they would shop at those brands more often.

Spending Power
Memorial Day - May
Veterans Day - November
"In just one year we increased the number of military consumers taking advantage of the discounts by 130%, which generated 70% more in revenue from dealer subscriptions."
Jason Nierman
CRO and Co-Founder

Nursing is America’s Most Trusted Profession

Everyone counts on nurses, which may be why more than half of them report feeling overwhelmed. That doesn’t stop them from working hard—or appreciating brands that recognize their dedication. More than 2 in 3 nurses said receiving a personalized offer would make them feel thankful, and 96% said it would give them a positive view of the brand.

In 15 countries
US Spending Power
National Nurses Week - May
"SheerID's Identity Marketing Platform made it easy for us to truly reward nurses and launch a positive brand relationship with them."
Jordan Clegg
Brand Manager, Integrated Marketing

College is a Defining Experience

Ninety-two percent of college students identify with being in college more strongly than their religion, family role, hobby, or nationality/cultural background. Companies that recognize the unique experience of students win their business. When offered a student discount, half of students would try out a new brand, and 45% would use it to make a purchase sooner.

US Spending Power
Back to School - Summer
"Xfinity's College Student Program is the top-performing gated program in Comcast history, and much of the credit goes to SheerID."
Cheri Davies
Senior Director of Acquisition Marketing

Teachers Put Their Students First

Teachers love their work so much that a vast majority spend their own money on school supplies. They also look for brands that support them and reward the ones that do. Three in four teachers prefer to buy from brands that offer teacher discounts, and 93% are more likely to buy school supplies from those brands.

US Spending Power
Teacher Appreciation Week - May
Back to School - Summer
"Teachers are educating the future. We want to reward them for who they are by giving them a special offer they couldn’t get from any of our competitors."
Jon Pickard
Senior Manager of eCommerce

The #1 Platform for Marketing to Consumer Communities

Verifying a customer belongs to a consumer community is critical to your identity marketing program’s success. It protects your margins and underscores that your offer is truly exclusive, which increases its appeal. Leading brands around the world use SheerID Verification Platform to verify and win loyal customers.

Graphs with Military Discount from SheerID

Why Choose SheerID

  • Launch a campaign in less than a week
  • Manage and optimize your programs in one place
  • Reach 2.5 billion consumers
  • Own the experience—and the data
  • Leverage the wisdom of leading global brands