psychographic analysis

Implementing a Psychographic Analysis to Fully Understand Your Customers

Implementing a Psychographic Analysis to Fully Understand Your Customers

psychographic analysis

In order to understand your target market, you’ll need to conduct a psychographic analysis, a critical kind of consumer analysis that logically follows a demographic analysis. Consolidating both of these forms of analyses allows you to paint an accurate picture of the customers most likely to buy from you — aka, your target market.

76% of customers expect companies to understand their needs. It is therefore critical to analyze your customers’ psychographics, as psychographics aims to understand the cognitive factors that drive consumer behaviors. As such, this kind of analysis allows you to understand the core of your customers’ psyche, making it easier to serve them and meet their needs.

To further prove the importance of understanding your customers, consider this: customer-centric companies are 60% more profitable compared to companies that aren’t. All businesses should study their customers' psychographics. 

This article explains the psychographic analysis in full detail, including its importance, makeup, how to collect psychographic data and how to conduct this kind of analysis.

Understanding the Psychographic Analysis

A psychographic analysis is a kind of customer analysis that involves examining psychological and emotional motivations in order to provide more relevant offers and messaging to the customers.

This kind of analysis is performed to complete a target market analysis, which is a comprehensive analysis of the consumers most likely to buy from you. 

A psychographic analysis must follow a demographic analysis, which organizes customers via basic, quantitative information, such as age, gender, occupation, etc. Studying psychographics allows you to understand how demographics relevant to your brand think and behave.

While demographics deal with a specific segment of the population, thereby answering the “who” and “what,” psychographics deal with the motivational factors that influence customer buying behavior. As such, a psychographic analysis provides the “why” behind purchasing behaviors. 

The following lists all the factors involved in a psychographic analysis:

  1. Consumer activities
  2. Interests
  3. Goals
  4. Values
  5. Belief systems 
  6. Attitudes
  7. Opinions
  8. Aversions
  9. Emotional responses
  10. Morals and ethics
  11. Biases and prejudices
  12. Tendencies and habits
  13. Hopes
  14. Thoughts
  15. Fears
  16. Lifestyles 

Given that psychological and behavioral factors tend to intertwine, this kind of analysis includes both. Additionally, they both hold sway on how, what and how many times customers buy. 

As such, this kind of analysis also supports the RFM analysis. An abbreviation for recency, frequency and monetary value, this analysis is used to estimate the value of a customer based on the three data points in its abbreviated title

Finally, a psychographic analysis allows you to create detailed customer profiles. As such, aside from learning the demographic makeup of your customers, you’ll begin to understand why they buy and behave in certain ways.

How to Collect Psychographic Information 

There are various means you can use to collect psychographic information. These involve taking part in secondary and primary research.

The following lays out the different ways you can collect psychographic information:

  1. One-on-one interviews
    1. The most traditional route.
    2. This often involves pre-recruiting participants.
    3. It can also consist of random cold calling.
  2. Focus group
    1. A small group of people selected based on shared characteristics to take part in a discussion for the purposes of market research.
    2. A moderator conducts a discussion where every member participates at their own will.
    3. This can be biased, as submissive participants will keep quiet, while extroverted, dominant participants will offer more.
  3. Website analytics 
    1. This includes internal site analytics.
    2. Examples include those involved from a web host, such as WordPress.
    3. It can also include Google Analytics, which displays various site activities.
  4. Third-party analytics providers
    1. UX analytics providers
    2. They often provide capabilities beyond traditional metrics such as traffic and bounce rate.
    3. Ex: Adobe Analytics
  5. Psycholinguistic 
    1. This refers to investigating the psychological processes involved in the use of language.
    2. In market research, it involves understanding customer jargon and slang.
    3. It deals with the perception, production, and acquisition of language.
  6. Browsing Data
    1. This involves examining how customers browse your site.
    2. It includes studying the time spent on a page, etc.
    3. It often involves using site cookies, which allow you to monitor customers and remember certain information about them.
  7. Social media behavior 
    1. This includes likes, shares, clicks, tweets, posts.
    2. It also involves using social listening to understand when customers mention your brand, niche or competitors.
    3. Reviews on social media sites provide insight into customers’ attitudes and opinions. 
  8. Syndicated research
    1. This research is conducted independently, published and sold by a market research firm. 
    2. The firm is industry-specific and funded by several companies in a particular industry.
    3. It doesn’t allow you to gain full control of your market research study, as the firm dictates the study and owns the data.
  9. Survey panels
    1. This research method collects data from a group of pre-recruited and pre-screened respondents.
    2. A group of panelists takes part in research sessions over a given period of time.
    3. This is ideal for longitudinal studies, as you can work with the same set of panelists continuously.
  10. Online survey tools
    1. This involves market research platforms that allow you to create, distribute and analyze surveys online.
    2. They put you in full control of your survey study.
    3. They eliminate bias via quality checks, such as banning VPN users, removing gibberish answers, etc. 

The Importance of a Psychographic Analysis

This kind of analysis is essential for various reasons. 

A psychographic analysis allows you to complete the customer profile you’ve begun compiling during a demographic analysis. It scopes out the psychological and behavioral factors behind the demographics

As such, you won’t merely understand who is in your target market, but their mindsets, what they do and why they act in particular manners, putting their customer behavior into perspective. 

Through this analysis, you’ll be able to unearth who would be most receptive to your company’s offering.

importance of a psychographic analysis

By understanding why a consumer might buy your product or service, you’ll be able to efficiently create marketing campaigns that appeal to them specifically. For example, some consumers may find it difficult to make healthier lifestyle choices. Through a psychographic analysis, you can discover the psychological nuances that drive this difficulty. 

You can then use those insights to appeal to these consumers, by positioning your brand as one that understands the hardships of living a healthy lifestyle and offers simple solutions, ie, your products and services. 

With the correct psychographic information in tow, you can then create marketing campaigns with the most relevant customer testimonials, content and messaging. You can also use the insights you gathered from this kind of analysis to adjust sales campaigns, such as creating the correct promotions and incentives that spur customers into buying from you. 

Aside from setting up the proper campaigns and serving your customers in their favor, a psychographic analysis allows you to influence consumer behavior. This involves being able to tap into your consumers’ values and what they hold important, along with using effective emotional marketing

For example, some customers value green initiatives and sustainability. They are thus most inclined to buy from green, sustainable brands. Other customers may have an emotional connection with a particular charity, and thus will be more willing to buy from a business that supports this charity, a similar one or champions its cause.

All in all, all businesses need to understand what motivates their consumers. A psychographic analysis will humanize the raw and statistical data that brands derive from a demographic analysis

That’s because psychographics refines dry data by painting a picture of who your shoppers are aside from their quantitative traits, allowing brands to know them on a far more personal and intimate level

How to Form a Psychographic Analysis

Creating a psychographic analysis requires conducting both primary and secondary market research. Unlike in a demographic analysis, studying customers’ psychographics requires conducting qualitative market research

You’ll need to apply this approach to every step in the process, including when you contextualize your demographic analysis — this is a major part of forming a psychographic analysis, as the psychographic portion is meant to delve into the psychological factors of a company’s key demographic targets.

how to create a psychographic analysis

The following lays out how to conduct a psychographic analysis:

    1. Begin by drawing up your findings from your demographic analysis. 
    2. Consult the different segments you’ve discovered from the secondary and primary research you conducted in your demographic analysis.
    3. Next, perform secondary research; use the current market segment insights you have and dig further by using all kinds of secondary sources. These include:
      1. Government websites
      2. Market research sites with publicly available data.
      3. Trade magazines
      4. Blogs
      5. News sites
      6. Websites dedicated to CX and consumers
      7. Niche sites that discuss consumers in your industry
    4. Add the information you’ve discovered in the demographic profiles you’ve created.
      1. For example: do men between the ages of 20-35 tend to make hasty purchases? Or perhaps they’re more likely to buy the latest version of electronics?
    5. Run a primary market research campaign.
      1. Use the profiles you created in the previous step to brainstorm your most pressing psychographic questions.
      2. To better understand each demographic segment you highlighted, conduct a survey with multiple audiences. Alternatively, conduct several surveys on each demographic group. (The former is more efficient; you’ll need an online survey platform that provides this).
    6. Consider dividing your surveys and question types by the following broad topics, which include corresponding sub-topics. Since it is best to keep surveys short as a best practice, it is ideal to create multiple surveys. First, divide them into the following:
      1. Emotional response 
        1. To understand consumer: feelings, aversions, desires, fears, emotional connections and sensitivities
      2. Consumer activities
        1. To understand consumer: habits, spending patterns, purchasing pains, frequency of purchases, lifestyles
      3. Interests
        1. To understand consumer: lifestyles, habits, curiosities, needs, biases, likes, tendencies
      4. Goals
        1. To understand consumer: needs, aspirations, how they seek to remove pain points
      5. Values
        1. To understand consumer: belief systems, moral and ethics, biases and prejudices,  
      6. Opinions
        1. To understand consumer: attitudes, hopes, perceptions of your brand and others and lastly, their thought
    7. Conduct follow-up surveys and/or questions, if need be.
      1. Use a survey platform that offers advanced skip logic, if you opt for the latter. This is because this functionality routes users to specific follow-up questions, based on how they answered a previous question.
    8. Analyze your findings.
      1. Use your market research platform’s dashboard to visualize and make sense of your data.
    9. Form concrete customer segments and personas from your psychographic survey findings and analysis.
    10. Take action.
      1. Use the findings from your psychographic analysis to take a wide range of actions, such as establishing new marketing campaigns, tweaking existing campaigns, innovating on products, improving customer service and more.
      2. Conduct regular surveys of your target market sample to continuously stay in the know about their feelings, opinions and all else that their psychographics include. 

Delving into the Minds of Your Customers

A psychographic profile enables you to know how your ideal customers think, feel, behave, value and much more. This kind of customer intelligence is vital, as it not only paints a clear picture of your target market, but it also allows you to understand your customers’ buying decisions and behaviors. 

This could mean the difference between earning, retaining or losing customers. As such, you should conduct a psychogrpahic analysis of your customers to understand what makes them tick, how they respond emotionally, how their values shape their buying behavior and much more.

To do so, you’ll need to use a quality online survey platform. You should use an online survey platform that makes it easy to create and deploy all kinds of surveys. 

It should extend random device engagement (RDE) sampling so that you can reach customers in their natural digital environments, as opposed to pre-recruiting them. 

Your online survey platform should also offer artificial intelligence and machine learning to remove low-quality data and offer a broad range of survey and question types.

Additionally, it should also allow you to survey anyone. As such, you’ll need a platform with a reach to millions of consumers, along with one that offers the Distribution Link feature. This feature will allow you to send your survey to specific customers, instead of only deploying them across a vast network. 

With an online survey platform with all of these capabilities, you’ll be able to properly conduct an informative psychographic analysis. 

Understanding Customer Behavior with Market Research

Understanding Customer Behavior with Market Research

Customer behavior is one of the foremost areas of concentration in marketing, as consumers are the bedrock of a company’s success. 

Businesses must therefore understand their customer behaviors in order to suit their needs and drive revenue. In fact, 66% of customers expect businesses to understand their needs and expectations.

But there is far much more to customer behavior than customer desires and expectations. This concept encompasses several facets of customer actions, along with the driving force behind them.

This article explores customer behavior, its importance, aspects and how a well-established campaign of market research techniques allows businesses to be well-acquainted with the customer behavior within their target market. 

Defining Customer Behavior

Also called consumer behavior, customer behavior denotes the study of customers, particularly those in a target market, including the processes they use to choose, consume and discard products and services

This field of study involves recording and examining customers’ mental, behavioral and emotional responses. Observing customer behavior goes beyond studying behaviors in a customer journey, that is, the actions customers take prior to making a purchase.

Rather, consumer behavior studies how customers choose products, why they avoid certain products, their buying behaviors, along with how they interact with a product or service. Thus, this concept transcends looking into what customers want and don’t want. 

When studying these behaviors, researchers often incorporate scientific approaches, using notions from psychology and economics and even chemistry and biology. 

Studying customer behavior can also involve studying organizations, especially for B2B businesses. However, B2C businesses can also stand to scrutinize companies as a kind of competitive analysis. 

Consumer behavior is the study of individuals and organizations and how they select and use products and services. It is mainly concerned with psychology, motivations, and behavior.

The Key Aspects that Customer Behavior Investigates

As aforementioned, customer behavior takes various elements of customers into account, going beyond its subsets of customer journeys and customer buying behavior, which themselves span different concepts.

The following enumerates several key aspects that customer behavior encompasses.

  1. Buying habits, including locations, devices and frequencies 
  2. Social trends and background factors that influence customers to make or avoid purchases
  3. Customer sentiment around product/service alternatives, such as related products/services, those from different brands
  4. Preferred methods of purchasing such as in-store versus online or both, at a large retailer or at a mom-and-pop shop, etc.
  5. Behaviors of customers as thy shop
  6. How customers search for companies
  7. How customers find businesses during their research 
  8. Customer reasoning behind different alternatives
  9. How customers are influenced by their environments such as their friends, media, culture and other target market members 
  10. How marketing campaigns influence or affect their behaviors

The Importance of Examining Customer Behavior

Studying this concept may appear to be laborious at worst and tedious at best, however, brands ought to avoid omitting it. This is because the aspects of customer behavior paint a critical picture of who customers are, allowing businesses to market and cater to them accordingly.  

Understanding the customer behavior of customers allows companies to adapt and improve their marketing campaigns, sales promotions, customer service and more. Most importantly, it allows brands to influence their customers more productively. 

Additionally, by understanding how customers choose, consume and discard products, businesses can identify issues in the products themselves and make innovations. In this way, studying customer behavior helps with product-related issues such as customer development and product satisfaction.  

Businesses can therefore study it to find gaps and flaws in existing products and improve upon them. Or, they can create products with alternative features and even new products to gain a competitive advantage.

Studying consumer behavior also allows marketers to present their products more effectively, so that they can drive a maximum impact. That way, customers will be more keen on interacting with a business, whether they’ve long known about it or recently discovered it.

When customers engage with a business more frequently, they become far more exposed to marketing and advertising messages that can influence them to make purchases. In this way, engaging with a company, whether it is viewing their content or browsing their offerings lodges that company in customers’ minds, which is key for brand awareness.

Generally speaking, it is also ideal for customers to have businesses on their minds subconsciously. In fact, a Harvard Business School professor declares that 95% of purchases are made subconsciously in his book, How Customers Think: Essential Insights into the Mind of the Market. This book also discovered that the biggest drivers of unconscious urges are emotions. 

All in all, examining consumer behavior enables businesses to become more attuned to their customers, thereby allowing them to better tailor their marketing efforts and retain customers for the long term

Customer Behavior Patterns

It is important to identify the patterns that makeup customer behavior. Patterns are not to be confused with buying habits, as the latter refers to inclinations for an action that can become spontaneous, whereas patterns exhibit predictable occurrences.

Customer behavior patterns are also contrary to buying habits in that patterns are indicative of groups, while habits are more unique and individual-based.

The following explains the four customer behavior patterns:

  1. Items purchased: Businesses should study their customers’ shopping carts, as they reveal exactly what customers buy and how much of it they buy. Patterns usually show that customers buy everyday-use items in larger quantities and more frequently, while luxury items are bought less frequently and in smaller quantities.
    1. Customers tend to buy products based on the products’ perishability, a unit of sale, price, number of users of the product and the buying power of the customer. 
  2. Place of Purchase: Customers usually shop at various stores, even when all of their intended products are available at just one. This largely depends on the accessibility of getting to various stores. When customers are not restricted to just one store due to transportation limitations, they are at liberty to choose items from multiple locations.
    1. Businesses must study place of purchase patterns, in that it will reveal customers’ choice of place, helping marketers understand which areas their customers visit. 
  3. Purchase Method: The way a customer chooses to buy products divulges the kind of customer that they are. That is because there are various purchase methods, all of which tie into a customer journey. 
    1. Customers can window shop online, then make up their minds at home and buy a product online. Or, they may buy a product in-store, via different payment options such as cash, debit or credit card.
    2. Businesses that gain this kind of insight into behavior patterns help them find ways to make customers buy again and more frequently.
    3. This pattern can also help businesses upsell products.
  4. Frequency and Timing of Purchase: Customers exhibit different times and frequencies of purchase. Regarding the former, they won’t all buy during business hours, given the prevalence of e-commerce, which allows them to shop at the earliest and latest parts of the day.
    1. Businesses can meet customer demands by studying their purchase timing and frequency in order to serve them better. 
    2. Studying these concepts will help businesses adapt to regional (and global) time differences, along with seasonal variations. 

The Things That Affect Customer Behavior

There are various influences and facets that can affect how customers behave. Businesses ought to acclimate themselves with these customer behavior factors, in that they all have a bearing on customer behavior and behavior patterns in one way or another.

When studying customer behavior based on these factors, businesses will be able to understand it more holistically. This helps in market segmentation and building customer personas, two market research tactics that allow businesses to gain a deeper understanding of their target market. 

The following lists the critical factors of customer behavior:

  1. Purchasing power: even the wealthiest of customers are constrained to some sort of budget or need to buy things within their means. Thus, much of what customers buy depends on their purchasing power.
  2. Marketing campaigns: Specifically designed to persuade customers as well as reel in new ones, marketing campaigns have the capability to influence buying behaviors, when done correctly. They can prompt customers to switch brands or opt for a more expensive product with the correct messaging — which requires understanding your customers. 
  3. Personality traits: Personality affects many kinds of behavior, including customer behavior. These spring from background and upbringing, which affect how people will behave in different settings. Some customers will be drawn to events (grand openings, sales, etc.) due to extroversion, while others may not be and some may fall in between.
  4. Personal preferences: The way customers choose purchases often relies on their personal preferences. Advertising and marketing campaigns can surely affect these but some preferences are unyielding. For example, a vegan will not buy animal-based products, while a meat lover is not going to shop for exclusively vegan items. Businesses should therefore be well-acquainted with the preferences of their target market. 
  5. The economy: Economic conditions play a role in customer behavior, especially in relation to more expensive products; positive economic environments are bent on making customers more willing to indulge. In times of inflation, consumers are less likely to spend on expensive items, as well as make frequent purchases. Negative economic conditions are fruitful for businesses to introduce promotions and bargains. 
  6. Group influence: Peer pressure and the opinions of others can also weigh heavily on buying and usage decisions. When customers’ friends and peers speak negatively or positively about an item or brand, it affects the way the customers perceive it. In some cases, group influence provides a setting of brand advocacy, while at other times, it can cause major reputational damage to a business. 
  7. Social trends: Related to group influence, social trends set the scene in terms of what is popular and acceptable. From social media, to movies, blogs and podcasts, various talking points and fads can form and leave strong impressions among customers. Some of these platforms provide a breeding ground for new trends, the kinds that marketers can access, depending on their budget and strategy. 

How Market Research Helps Businesses Understand Customer Behavior

Conducting market research enables businesses to understand all the key facets of customer behavior. There is much involved in market research, all of which can help marketers deliver more effective campaigns. 

First off, market research encompasses a wide breadth of studies, from secondary research to primary research and from quantitative research to qualitative research. There is a vast pool of available resources, i.e., secondary sources available. These can take the form of industry news sites, statistics sources, published studies and more.

While secondary research is an important starting point for conducting market research, it does not address all the specific needs that a business may have, let alone the specific questions that businesses intend to probe their customers with.  

As such, all businesses should turn to primary sources to understand their consumer behaviors. There are different routes for market researchers to take on this front; effective survey studies are the most useful. This is because surveys allow researchers to understand where their target market lies in all the factors and patterns of customer behavior

For example, market researchers can conduct surveys to learn more about their customers’ purchasing power and how it relates to what they buy and how much. In addition, they can qualify only certain people from taking a survey, so that they can study respondents who fall within a particular income bracket.

Another example involves surveying customers based on their awareness levels of cultural trends and their opinions thereof. 

In relation to studying customer buying patterns, surveys provide value, in that customers can ask detailed questions about all patterns, whether they are concerned with purchasing methods, the place of purchase, frequency, etc. 

A strong online survey platform will allow businesses to gain a deep understanding of these aspects, through the use of advanced skip logic, which routes survey respondents to appropriate follow-up questions based on their answers to previous questions.

Finally, surveys allow market researchers to make decisions in an organized way, as they help form a customer behavior analysis report. This report reveals:

  • How customers behave while researching, browsing products and purchasing
  • How customers use products
  • How long customers use their products
  • What customers think and feel about different brands and product options
  • How their environments affect their behavior

Improving Business Goals and Scaling by Understanding Your Target Market

Customer behavior to a business is like blood to mammals. While this may sound dramatic, it analogizes the importance of understanding your target market’s behavior. When businesses fail to study their customers’ behaviors, they are remiss on so many meaningful opportunities.

Thus, marketing campaigns of all sizes and calibers are at a much larger risk of failing. Market research, particularly survey research helps combat ignorance of customer behavior. This is because surveys give researchers the freedom to study any factor and pattern that relates to this behavior, arming them with critical insights on how customers shop throughout their journeys. 

The most crucial component of survey research is using the correct online survey platform. Not all surveys offer advanced skip logic and can qualify respondents based on various demographics and psychographics. Thus, businesses and market researchers must invest in an online survey tool wisely, as it can make or break any market research campaign