The invention relates to hydrocracking of lignin, and specifically relates to a method for applying a tungsten-based catalyst to catalyze lignin hydrocracking for producing an aromatic compound. The catalyst comprises a main active component of non-zero-valent tungsten, and a second metal component of a small amount of one or more transition metals selected from zero-valent nickel, cobalt, ruthenium, iridium, palladium, platinum, iron, and copper. According to the method, raw materials such as lignin, biomass hydrolysis residue, lignosulfonate, and alkaline lignin are subject to catalytic hydrogenation under a hydrothermal condition with a temperature of 120 to 450 DEG C and a hydrogen pressure of 1 to 20MPa; the raw materials are cracked into C6-C9 phenolic compounds with high selectivity. A maximal phenol yield reaches 55.6%. Compared to existing technologies, according to the invention, renewable natural biomasses are adopted as raw materials, such that the raw materials are cheap, and have wide sources; inorganic acid and alkali are not required, such the production of a large amount of alkaline solution in traditional lignin catalysis is avoided; the tungsten-based catalyst is cheap; the reaction process is green, and has atom economical characteristics.