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Understanding Your Consumers Personalities

Quick Notes - Consumer Personalities:
  • Target specific consumer personalities to increase sales.
  • Six Consumer Personalities: The Negotiator, The Bargain Shopper, The Child, The Adult, The Judge, The Red Herring.

Which consumer personality are you? Why is it important to identify customers into personality types? Basic sales skills will assist you in selling to most customers, but only advanced selling techniques will allow you to target some of the specific consumer personalities that exist. This article will explain each personality and give you strategies to deal with them from a psychosocial perspective. Understanding each personality will allow you to create successful sales strategies for each, learn to close a deal with each, and empower you to be a better salesperson. The six personalities include the Negotiator, the Bargain Shopper, the Child, the Adult, the Judge, and the Red Herring.

Six Consumer Personalities You Should Know

The Negotiator

The Negotiator is tasked with getting the absolute lowest price from you. They are the kind of person who will not stop negotiating for a better price until they’ve been told several times that the price cannot get any lower. They will use pressure to try and have you cave on your pricing strategies. However, they will quickly rush to finish the deal if they know you will not go any lower. Use this to your advantage when dealing with The Negotiator. Formalize the lower price point you will go for each of your products or services and don’t let the Negotiator’s smooth talking get the better of you. The best way to do business with the Negotiator is to be a very good listener and act like you’re playing right into his suggestions. Once he finishes trying to negotiate with you, recite some of what he had to say and explain your price point can not go any lower. Play hard ball with him, and throw thorns into his side until he ceases negotiations. This will minimize the amount of time you spend heckling with the Negotiator, and allow you to focus on the transaction and other customers. The worst thing you can do as a successful sales manager is continually devote time to the Negotiator.

The Bargain Shopper

The Bargain Shopper is concerned solely with getting the cheapest or most cost effective solution. He is not concerned with any other aspects of the product or service and will shop until he has found the absolute lowest price. With this mentality, the Bargain Shopper is typically very compulsive and naïve. They are very bad listeners, and they have little interest in your sales speech or product overview. Use this to your advantage by spending very little time with the Bargain Shopper. If your price point is higher than competitors, it is very unlikely you will get their money. However, the Bargain Shopper usually evolves into the Negotiator and will eventually find quality over quantity. Try and maintain a positive relationship with any Bargain Shoppers, and find solace in the fact that they will probably return and purchase from you once they realize your product is far superior to the one they initially purchased. The worst thing you can do with the Bargain Shopper is tell them your price is firmly above what they expect to pay. Try not to talk numbers with them unless they specifically ask. When they do ask about your successful pricing strategies, ensure you devote little time to justifying it with them. They will waste your time like the Negotiator.

The Child

The Child is the very naïve and gullible customer. They will believe anything you tell them and they are highly susceptible to purchasing what you have to offer. You must tread very carefully with the Child. You do not want to compromise your morals and ethics in order to close a sale. Make sure the Child needs your product before you close the sale. They will be unable to make this distinction for themselves, and will depend on you to give them a sense of appreciation for their business. They will often times be the first person to return and speak with you about your product if it is not exactly as described. The Child looks for praise, acceptance, and understanding. The best sales technique to use with the Child is to set boundaries with them. Ensure they know what they’re getting themselves into. Make sure you take a proactive approach in dealing with them, by empowering them to make the decision without you making it for them. The Child eventually evolves into the Adult (described below), and so you want to ensure you have a good business relationship with them. The worst thing you can do with the Child is fall into the trap of ignoring your morals and standards by overselling the Child. Stick to your guns and be an ethical salesperson.

The Adult

The Adult is the exact opposite of the Child. The Adult will know exactly what he is looking for, generally expects a certain level of cooperation from any salesperson, and does not negotiate prices or terms. They will usually have short discussion with you on what it is you are selling, and then they will quickly ask the price and decide whether or not to conduct the transactions immediately. They want to get in, make a purchase, and get out. If they feel you’re trying too hard to sell them, or if they feel you’re trying to play pricing games with them, they will walk away from the deal. Approach the Adult you would your family. Give them the lowest possible price to begin with, explain the product thoroughly as a neutral party, and give some criticisms of the product alongside positives. You need to appear neutral and unbiased with the Adult before he makes a sale with you. Give the Adult as much time as they need to make the sale. It is very likely they are analyzing you as a person before they analyze the quality of the product. Be very professional and get straight to business with the Adult. The worst thing you can do with the Adult is try and pull their leg or engage them in bargaining tactics. Use basic sales skills and close the deal appropriately.

The Judge

The Judge is a customer that comes in with a strong belief that everyone around them is out to get him. They are suspicious of most things including you and your product. They will ask a million questions that are framed around trying to catch you in a lie. Handle the Judge with diligence and the utmost attention to detail. Their questions will be targeting your integrity and reputability. They may even put you down or belittle you in an attempt to feel superior to you so they feel empowered to get the better end of the deal. The best way to handle the Judge is to play into their hand and act like the Child. Ask them lots of questions, praise them with compliments, and use customer reviews or testimonials to get your product across to them. The worst thing you can do with the Judge is lie to them, or otherwise not pay attention to things they have said in the past. Give the Judge your undo attention if you want to close the deal with them.

The Red Herring

The Red Herring is a customer that has no intention of purchasing your product. They may visit your web site or retail outlet regularly and never buy a thing. They are there simply to appear interested in purchasing your products. They will often times wander the store without going to anything in particular, and they may even ask to be shown something without actually purchasing it. They appear to ask intelligent questions and seem like an ideal sales candidate. Avoid devoting time to the Red Herring because they may never purchase a product from you. Their intentions may vary between each Red Herring, but their outcome is the same: They are not there to purchase from you. The worst thing you can do with the Red Herring is entertain their questions and avoidance techniques. Simply advise the Red Herring that you are busy and have other things to do. They do not intend to purchase anything anyways, so they will certainly not be offended by your gesture.
Understanding the six consumer personalities is integral to developing a sound strategic sales plan. Your ability to deal with each personality will dictate how effective your conversion rates are, and how many sales you can successfully close.