Poundland.

It speaks to the very heart of the thrifty UK shopper looking for a purchase with nothing but £1 in their pocket.

The joy of walking into a land that as far as the eye can see, whatever you touch is a mere pound speaks to many and is the reason why Steve Smith was able to eventually sell his stake in the business he founded for £50m.

But what about the power of psychographics in the success of brands such as Poundland?

When creating a buyer persona for your marketing and customer experience campaigns, the first thing you look at is the demographic information, the basic parameter used for segmentation. Demographics, though, only tell you ‘who’ your customers are. You still miss something important.

The missing key is the ‘Why’. Why do they buy that one product? Why do they prefer a brand to another one? We often say that a proper management of the experience starts with the recognition of the most profound motivations behind the purchase. You will never gain this type of insights if you only look at the demographic and behavioural patterns.

Customers want to succinctly know – what’s in it for them? Using the entire user journey and USP as the actual name of the brand was a genius move for Poundland but in an age where for non-brick-and-mortar businesses, memorable dotcom domains have long disappeared and the list of new top-level domains grows ever longer, brand identity and psychographics are ‘uber’ important in distilling the essence of your business and marketing it to the right individual.

Demographic and behavioural information only give marketers part of the story they need to effectively segment a customer base. The problem with both of those types is that they do not tell us why people are doing things, which, as marketers, is the most important thing for us to know.” (Susan Baier)

If you don’t have a name like Poundland, why are your customers using you? What are the emotions driving their decision? Knowing the ‘why’ is key to ensure that your customers keep ‘doing’ and nowadays when people on average have an attention span of eight seconds (five seconds if you see the dreadful font of the article this link takes you to) marketers need to also do a degree of psycho-analysis on content served to their customer base.

In the 90’s The Big Five personality traits – also known as the five factor model (FFM) – has reached a major consensus, and is still today considered a benchmark.

This theory suggests that individual differences in personality and psyche can be categorised into five major factors: Openness to experience, Conscientiousness, Extroversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism (OCEAN). Each global factor contains several correlated and more specific primary factors and provides the foundations upon which Centiment builds its Emotion Personas from.

Getting the psychographic data is important but it is how you apply data to your strategy that will make them truly effective in tapping into the heart and mind of the customer.