Psychographic vs Behavioral Segmentation: How to Develop Buyer Personas

Imagine this: You’re an automobile showroom that deals with various types of vehicles including SUVs, Sedans and commercial vehicles. You’ve recently launched a new luxury SUV and are anticipating leads that might be interested in your offering but despite all your promotional efforts, nobody is signing up for it. What could be the reason? Are they not interested in it? Well, we don’t think that’s the case. It’s perhaps because you’re overlooking psychographic and behavioral segmentation in your marketing efforts.

What is Psychographic Segmentation?

This type of market segmentation classifies customers based on their intrinsic characteristics such as personality attributes, attitudes, beliefs, interests, and lifestyles. Unlike demographic segmentation that divides the target audience on the basis of factual and quantifiable information such as age, gender, marital status and income; psychographics involve going a step ahead and viewing customers beyond what they mean to the brand & more as individuals with their own preferences and values. In essence, it focuses on why customers do what they do.

buyer persona targeting strategy

What is Behavioral Segmentation?

As the name suggests, this type of segmentation divides customers according to their behavioral patterns as per their interaction with the brand. It primarily focuses on variables such as their purchasing behavior, buyer journey stage that they are at, loyalty to the brand, frequency of usage & expected benefits from the product or service. In contrast to its psychographic counterpart, the behavioral division is action-oriented and emphasizes on only what customers do.

buyer persona targeting strategy

Psychographic vs Behavioral Segmentation: Understanding the Difference:

While both types of segmentation help you understand your audience better and enable you to adjust your marketing efforts to maximize value for them and connect with them on a deeper level, the core difference lies in the approach undertaken in each to achieve this objective. For example, the behavioral aspect assists in predicting customer actions based on the previous behavioral patterns while the psychographic aspect facilitates in understanding what they value in life, their problems and solutions and thereby, allows incorporating a more personalized outlook to marketing.

Now that you’ve understood the kinds of segmentation, let’s take a look at how both of them contribute to developing buyer personas for your brand. According to HubSpot’s definition, a buyer persona is “a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer.” It is constructed on the basis of market research and actual data that includes insights about both behavioral and psychographic variables. As a marketer, it is important for you to understand your prospective buyer’s personality, leisure time activities, and interests so that you can sketch an accurate and detailed picture of your ultimate customer.

Are you wondering how to create your own buyer personas? Let’s refer to the automobile showroom scenario cited above and form a basic buyer persona as per our understanding of the ideal customer for a luxury vehicle.

Demographic Profile:

  • Age: 35-65+
  • Gender: Male & Female (both)
  • Education Level: Bachelors / Masters
  • Occupation: Working at mid to top-level management positions at organizations (CEO, Director General, Managing Partner and so on)

Psychographic Profile:

  • Prefer high-value goods
  • Interested in tech-related content
  • Interested in automobiles related movies and T.V shows like Rush, Fast and Furious, Fifth Gear and so on.

Behavioral Profile:

  • Have inquired about the vehicles and services offered by the company
  • Engage with the content uploaded on the social media channels
  • Technology early adopters
  • Frequent travellers and Expats

Seeing the three lists above, it’s reasonable to understand why a combination of all of these factors is necessary to create a descriptive and precise outline of your potential audience and tailor your offerings according to their needs and expectations and thereby, strengthen and expand your customer base. Want to learn more about buyer profiles and how they can help refine your targeting strategy? Head over to one of our blogs on Rethink your Targeting Strategy and Buyer Profile from Digital Ninja – Back to the Basic Series here:

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