Personality Marketing: Smart Data Instead of Big Data in Retail – Part I

Personality Marketing

Big Data: The data collection mania – not only in marketing – has broadly taken absurd characteristics. Who bought when, where, how, what discount did they get, on what action did they buy, what bonus system has been applied, did they search on internet, what credit card has been used, did they consult forums first, what accessories are they missing, what is the buyer’s age, height, sex? What marketers using rich data ultimately want to find out: “what else can we offer these people”. That’s why so many questions are being asked here. But these are often the wrong ones. The important questions are “why?” and “how?”. Then all you need is: Small Data. Smart Data!

The important questions have to do with the client’s personality. Consider the motives for purchases, or choices, and then think of the communication: How do I address my message to you, the Customer, so that you are not annoyed, surprised but not bored, convinced but not persuaded? In short: so that you feel understood. And respected.

Small Data in Personality Marketing: address customer need types

Whether your customers are businesses (B2B) or people (B2C), they have a personality structure. Which is reflected in the corporate culture or in their personal, individual preferences. This structure is based on the inner values, personality traits and behaviors of people. In Human Resources, diagnostic tools such as Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI ®) profiles have been widely used and tend to make it easier to recognize a personality structure.

Most of these profiles organize personality types grossly in different colors (red, yellow, blue, green) or categories (introvert, thinker type) for ease of understanding. This makes it possible to decide which employees really fit the corporate culture, or how effectively and smoothly teams can be put together more easily. Because what would happen in a team, which consists only of “red people power”? They would wipe out the competition. A team of nothing but inspiring “yellow” visionaries would certainly have great ideas, but maybe not the skills to implement the ideas successfully.

Just like that, your clients also have individual personality structures. Each individual one is a bit different – but there are groups of personality profiles that show significant similarities: they share similar motives, similar values, similar attitudes, similar communication behavior, similar work patterns, similar criteria for purchase decision.

Marketing that respects customer’s personality

Therefore of course, a supplier’s communication and marketing to the customer is particularly effective if they are able to assess their customer’s personality profile and address him respectfully on this basis. A small but growing number of companies and sales staff uses tools for personality diagnosis. Smart Data!

The question now is, how do you get this smart data. How do you find out how a customer or a potential new customer is ticking? Let’s take a furniture chain as a concrete example.

About their customers they know from previous purchase behavior – and this has nothing to do with Big Data collection, the following buyer types. The person who bought the luxury giant sofa combination in the Bauhaus style, the design classic side tables or the big desk in piano finish, has a certain representation need. He is an example of a “red” director type, an extroverted person. “My home is a castle!” The light wood combination for the large kitchen appeals to the social “green” customer: “My home is my castle!”. He would also take a few cuddly cushions for the corner seat. The “blue” analytical customer uses a checklist in which he exactly sums up the pros and cons of each bedroom cabinet. And brings along a dozen drawings of his future bedroom to match the right one. Finally, the “yellow” inspirer, the “creative connoisseur”, has decided to sofas in magenta quite stylish and avant garde, which he guarantees will be replaced by a new design style in two years.

Now we have reached the end of part I of this blog post on Personality Marketing. Part II will be published in two days time, so stay tuned.

We would welcome your comments and experiences on the topic.

Errol van Engelen is owner/director at Bizzmaxx, a marketing service provider specialized in improving your sales funnel through Digital Marketing, Lead Generation, Marketing Solutions and Marketing & Sales Alignment.



About bizzmaxx2012
Director/owner at Bizzmaxx, responsible for general management, business development, sales, consulting and blogging.

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