Psychographic Segmentation Definition with Examples

What Is Psychographic Segmentation?

Psychographic segmentation divides potential consumers based on their interests, personalities, lifestyles, activities, and other similar factors. This kind of market segmentation is done to cater to consumers with similar likes and needs and offer them something they value. Using this segmentation, companies target different messages to different customer segments for a single product, highlighting the product’s worth that is mutually beneficial for the consumers belonging to one segment.

Consumers have various different psychographic make up and analyzing these differences and grouping consumers based on their mutually shared characteristics is the beginning of psychographic segmentation.

Usually, this type of segmentation is used when a product or service is offered to a heterogeneous market, where consumers have very different demographics from each other. The key aim of this segmentation type is to group consumers into characteristics that are otherwise not so visible such as personality traits, attitudes, interests, activities, etc.

Psychographic Segmentation Examples

The different variables or factors of this type of market segmentation are divided into several different types. Companies based on their product or service, need and specific marketing campaign decide which factor will benefit them. Some of the commonly used psychographic segmentation variables are

Lifestyle Based Segmentation

This is by far the most common and popular type of psychographic market segmentation companies use. This is exceptionally true for retail sectors, clothing for example. Based on personal lifestyle, every person dresses differently. Based on this segmentation clothing brands target consumers based on which stage of lifestyle they are in. Are they school going kids, are they college going teens, are they professionals or office goers, are they housewives, are they retired, etc. Another lifestyle aspect that is highly considered is whether the consumer is a rural or urban dweller. 

An example of this kind of market segmentation is Walmart. Discount stores like Walmart target middle-class budget savvy individuals who aim to save money whenever and wherever they can. As a result of psychographic segmentation and through studying the past and present customer trends Walmart design messages such as “Unbeatable Prices” and “Special Discounted Online Offers” to target their consumers that opt for discounted goods to save money. Since these messages resonate with their target audience, they allow them to reach out to their consumers in a more efficient manner.

Personality Based Segmentation

Personality is a variable of psychographic segmentation that is highly dependent on two other factors, the lifestyle and social class of a consumer. A personality that has a rich taste and preference will definitely have the buying power to maintain an equal lifestyle.

A person who loves to dress lavishly, will need the buying power to support this personality trait, and owed to the high buying power, will lead a lifestyle that will support his or her personality. Brands often use this kind of market strategy, as different brands target different personalities.

Harley Davidson Bikes, for example, target personalities that are masculine, tall and love to lead a rough lifestyle.

Companies often target their consumers based on their personalities; however, this kind of segmentation requires in-depth study of consumers as this factor is of an intangible nature.

Social Class Based Segmentation

Not all consumers in a market fall in the same social class. Social class of a person is determined by his or her buying power, which is further affected by the background of the individual. How much a person earns and what his or her spending habits affect the social class of a person. Any consumer will purchase to maintain the social class he or she belongs to.

Premium branded companies such as Longines, Gucci and other similar brands target the high social class segment as they have the buying power to purchase their product, and will do so to maintain their social class. Companies that structure their market strategies based on the consumer social class need to consider both the lifestyle and social class of the target audience.

Attitude Based Segmentation

Another variable of psychographic segmentation or a subset of it is the attitude or value of the consumer. Every individual carries a unique value shaped by our surroundings, culture, upbringing, etc, which further define our attitude towards different things. For example, an individual that belongs to a conservative background will carry certain aspects in their attitudes. That will restrain them from buying any product that challenges those beliefs, irrespective of whatever social class or lifestyle they belong to.

Other Types of Psychographic Segmentation (Marital Status, Education)

Other types of psychographic market segmentation include marital status based segmentation. Products such as baby food, or other baby products, segment their products towards married individuals, who are expected to buy these products. Nestle Cerelac always conveys an atmosphere of a cozy family house, where both parents nurture their child and feed him Nestle Cerelac facilitating his healthy growth. This is done to target married individuals who are the main target consumer for the company.

Another market segmentation factor is education. Today many edible brands market their product signifying their health-related benefits, targeting educated individuals, who would understand the importance of what is being offered and opt to buy it.

Another Example of psychographic segmentation can be Mundial Olive Oil that markets its products conveying the benefits of using olive oil and how it promotes a healthy lifestyle. Of course, using the same technique in a remote rural area would not bear fruitful results, as they might not be educated enough to understand the associated benefits.