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The Experience Formula

Psychographics: The Secret to Understanding Your Customers Deepest Desires

Photo by David Marcu

I couldn’t believe it.

I turned my head to see Fabien Barral standing two feet away from us.

He had no reason to be in that book store.

Neither did we.

It was complete chance.

Or was it?

After all — it wasn’t the first time this had happened.

A year and a half ago we bumped into Fabien at Bali Buddha, a funky health food joint in Ubud, Bali, INDONESIA of all places.

And now, he happened to be standing a few feet away from us at an obscure art and design bookshop along the Paris canals…

Immediately I realized it WASN’T chance.

And I realized that I had just learned something extremely valuable about finding not only my niche but about finding my ideal customer no matter where they may hiding…

Fabien is the creator of the design blog Mr. Cup… he travels the world looking for creative inspiration with his wife Frédérique and their daughter Thaïs.

Sound familiar?

Sound anything like another entrepreneurial couple you know?

A certain Marisa Murgatroyd and Murray Gray? 

I’m sharing this story because Fabien, Frédérique, Murray and myself share certain interests and lifestyle choices that has us bumping into each other all over the world.

Chances are, the people you serve share certain interests and lifestyle choices too. And when you identify these psychographic details and base your marketing around them, they’ll be bumping into you all over the world (or at least the internet).

… Just like Murray and I keep bumping into Fabien because we share interests in travel, healthy living, entrepreneurialism, blogging, art, design and culture.

DEFINITION: Psychographics are all the subjective attributes that make your ideal customers who they are such as their personality, attitudes, interests, activities, opinions, values and lifestyle.

Psychographics require you to understand your audience more than demographics – or all the cut-and-dry information such as gender, age, location, ethnicity, income, education level, marital status, home ownership and profession.

Way too often, the act of defining your target market or your ideal client becomes this intellectual exercise, rather than tuning in, listening, really feeling into who your clients are and what they really want.

Here are some questions you can ask yourself to deepen your knowledge of who your customers really are:

  • What keeps them up at night? Dreaming? Scheming? Worrying?
  • What interests do they have?
  • How do they spend their free time?
  • How do they spend their holidays?
  • What lifestyle choices do they make?
  • What does their ideal day look like?
  • Who else do they follow or listen to around your topic or area of expertise? Who influences them? Why?
  • Who do they love to hate? Who turns them off? Why?
  • What events do they attend? What books or blogs do they read? What Facebook groups are they part of?

Now, that you’ve asked these questions, can you see yourself reference these details in the emails you write and the stories you tell?

Can you see yourself crafting your message in a way that will resonate with this kind of person?

Can you actually picture yourself having a conversation with them?

…Maybe even bumping into them in an obscure bookshop along the Paris canals?

Because, if you can, you’re in business…

If you want to inspire your ideal clients to say yes to working with you, you have to know who they are and craft your messaging to speak directly to them – to their challenges, interests and aspirations.

How am I doing speaking to you?

Love it? Hate it? Let me know...

  1. Ruth Falk Avatar
    Ruth Falk

    Great writing. Great introductory paragraph. Drew me right in. You are definitely someone I will follow. Yes I know you have heard this before. Never hurts to hear it again. I love how you craft you work and webinars.

    Ruth Falk

    1. Marisa Murgatroyd Avatar
      Marisa Murgatroyd

      Thanks Ruth! It’s all about storytelling, isn’t it? Telling stories that create connection and allow for greater levels of insight…

  2. David M. O'Neill Avatar
    David M. O'Neill

    In the scheme of things, psychographics have a power beyond demographics – emotions!

    Psychographics map the thinking and feeling mind into specific peaks and valleys of emotional or motivational thinking that leads to behavior. Valuable stuff for marketing – no?

    Minor problem – the data is not readily available and not the easiest to research. Ask any copywriter – wait – ask a good copywriter, they will tell you they “become” their avatar (ideal customer) to develop a emotional perspecitve and language for their target message. A bit of an art and guessing game even with extensive A/B testing.

    Personally, I’m hoping to find some nexus of available demographics and the topical/behavioral sources of that data to drive psychographic research with a little less art and costly research.

    I’ll keep y’all posted!

    1. Marisa Murgatroyd Avatar
      Marisa Murgatroyd

      Hi David – The closest thing I’ve seen to psychographic data is personality architecture, which classes people into 4 behavioral types based on the Myers-Briggs assessment.

      I still value simply getting to know my audience through listening and observing and dialogue….

  3. Rosie Avatar

    I love your intro! The truth is if one person wants something or is passionate about something that you have or can offer no matter how niche or diverse it is, then there are a million others out there who will want or feel that way too – you just have to find them!

    1. Marisa Murgatroyd Avatar
      Marisa Murgatroyd

      Yes, it’s all about finding that need or passionate endorsement. The more you can focus in, the more people will resonate.

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