By Anastasia Lloyd-Wallis
Chief Operating Officer and Head of Consumer Insights, Retail Doctor Group

In part one of this two part series, I explored how customer loyalty has changed and shared a four step process to follow in revamping an existing loyalty program.

In this second blog article, I deep dive into how personality profiling will help you build a profitable loyalty program that will have your customers choose you first and foremost every time.

Think about two consumers. They’re the same age and same gender. They both live in the same area, and they’re in the same income bracket. So, traditionally, we’ll think of them in the same way.

But we actually have two very different consumers here. One is King Charles, the new King of England. And the other is Ozzy Osbourne. They could not be any more different in what they’re looking for from you. So we must really understand that emotion, that personality, so we can target all of our messaging at every aspect of the customer journey to that person.

Personality Types and Their Decision-Making Drivers

This is where Limbic Insights™ and personality profiling comes into it. Within the Limbic Insights™ system we have three areas of the brain:

  • The stimulants
  • The dominance; and
  • The balance

Now, these three areas drive all emotions and all consumer decision-making habits. These three main areas drive purchasing behaviour, too. Within these three areas we find we have seven different personality types and the whole range of human emotions is divided into these seven groups:

  • The disciplined, driven by order and efficiency.
  • The performer, driven by status and success.
  • The adventurer, driven by excitement, gamification, and a challenge.
  • The hedonist, driven by fun, excitement, and spontaneity.
  • The open-minded, driven by pleasure, indulgence, and relaxation.
  • The harmoniser, driven by family, safety, and a need to feel looked after.
  • The traditionalist, driven by reliability and security.

So, we can see each of these personality types has a very different driver and a very different need. What does this mean for you and your loyalty scheme?

Personality Types and Their Consumer Needs

First and foremost, have a quick look at these different personality types to begin to understand which of them is your current or ideal consumer. How do we build those profiles into loyal customers and brand advocates for our business needs? Here’s a couple examples:

  • For the performers, it’s about prestige and performance. They’re looking to be held in esteem, to be seen as VIPs, to be made to feel special.
  • For the hedonist, it’s about trying new things, being seen as the early adopter, to be a part of the in-crowd. They want a retailer that drops new products regularly and exclusive access to try these new products first.

We now understand what messaging to give to them, what loyalty programme they need, and all other aspects of their consumer behaviour and spending habits.

Personality Types and Their Reward Systems

Let’s take a look at how these different personalities react to loyalty:

  • Patrick – the performer: interested in subscriptions, VIP services, and status tiers.
  • Hannah – the hedonist: looking for fun and excitement found only at special events or wrapped up in special products designed just for her.

By understanding who you’re going to talk to, you can build not only your loyalty programme, but an emotional connection with your consumers, too, and build their long-term loyalty in the process.

Understanding the Customer’s Journey

Each customer has a very different journey, and this journey actually then builds their loyalty.

So, from the minute they start interacting with your brand – right after that first purchase and throughout the journey into their second purchase – understanding how that journey differs and how we should be talking to them at every step will help you build a loyal customer base and an emotional connection with them.

As each personality has different needs in their customer journey, we now know that each one of these seven personalities expects different things at different stages in their journeys. For example:

  • Performers are very much digitally-focused at the start of their journey. They rely on online reviews and advertisements to help them make an informed decision. They expect the websites they visit to be quick and easy to navigate to complete a purchase or have a query answered. When in-store, they expect premium service. Don’t waste their time.
    • And then, post-purchase, they want to be part of a VIP scheme. They want to be able to have subscriptions that make their life easier. They’re looking for limited edition products to make them feel special.
  • Hedonists are very visually driven and socially orientated. They’re looking for celebrity influences to make informed decisions, but they also want to be influencers, themselves. You’ll need to keep them involved in the journey by making them your influencers and brand advocates. All hedonists really want is to be at the forefront of their friendship group, leading and influencing decisions.
    • After the purchase, they have a need to feel more special than the average customer. This is easily achieved by making them be the first to try new items. Use special events and “Just For You” promotions to keep them engaged and loyal.

What Personality Means for Brands and Retailers

Understanding who that customer is, what their journey is, and approaching them in a tailored and strategic kind of way at every point of their journey is going to build the emotional connection and loyalty your brand needs as a retailer in this fast-paced and need-it-now market.

Our research clearly points to the fact that building loyalty in all aspects of the customer journey is vitally important to the longevity and resilience of your brand. Customers just want to be loyal to a brand, really. They need that emotional connection to bring their loyalty centres to life.

From there, it’s a matter of looking at how to bring that connection to life in-store, online, and in every touchpoint or piece of communication you may have with your customer.

This blog post forms part of a podcast series on The Future of Consumers in Retail. You can listen to the original podcast here.

If you’re looking to understand “Why” your customers interacts with you and how to use this to drive foot traffic, increase conversions and improve frequency of visitation reach out to me for a complimentary discussion:

Or connect with us on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and Instagram.