Customer segmentation through mindsets

What is mindset segmentation?

While marketing segmentation distinguishes people according to their buying behaviors, mindset segmentation identifies people based on their emotional desires and expectations. Mindsets are a series of self perceptions or beliefs people have about themselves. They help us understand what drives people's decisions and behaviors. Businesses need a working knowledge of customers’ rational and emotional motivations, which enables empathetic communication strategies, product design, and customer-centric strategy development.

How do you segment customers using mindsets ?

Mindset segmentation means putting your audience into different segments based on their mindsets, and not their mindsets about your product or brand—just their mindsets in general.

There are five major categories of audience segment attributes of mindset segmentation beliefs, hopes and fears, emotional needs, expercations and brad perceptions.

Beliefs. Find out what your audience believes in (community, friends and family, any activities, ways of thinking, etc.) and then see how your brand can coincide with those beliefs and values.

Hopes and fears. You can think of this in relation to your industry, but try to think more big picture and talk with your loyal customers to understand what makes them feel fulfilled vs. disappointed.

Emotional needs. You probably know by now that appealing to emotions is a great marketing tactic, but you have to know what emotional needs are at play in the first place. The need for security and self-esteem can be huge.

Expectations. What is it that gets someone to trust someone else? This is where you can learn what someone thinks is unethical or what social constructs they expect in general and therefore also when they get to know your brand.

Brand perceptions. This one may seem like it doesn’t fit in with the others, but analyzing how someone might describe your company to others still tells you about their personal values.

For example, Fjord discovered four “money” mindsets in the financial services industry.

  • Achievers: “I want to reach my goals.” In this mindset, people define success by budgeting for clear, often tangible goals. This helps them feel in control and prepared for the future.

  • Balancers: “I want to get he best value I can.” In this mindset, people define success by getting the best deal in each transaction, maximizing rewards and staying on their financial plan so they don’t have to worry.

  • Experiencers: “I’m living for today.” In this mindset, people define success by enjoying the present. They seek delight in how they choose to spend money and are optimistic about the future.

  • Explorers” I want to keep my future open.” In this mindset, people define success by saving money and making trade offs so they can be happy and live comfortably.

Ready to start creating your own customer mindsets? Putting together focus groups, polls, surveys, and interviews, particularly from your loyal customers, is the best way you can get started creating these different segments. Start to build personas while making sure you are touching on all of the points mentioned above. Ask about their beliefs and expectations through polls on social media, and more. You can get as creative as you want, you just have to make sure that you’re changing your own mindset to ask the right questions that evoke the right answers.

Why is it important to segment my customers using mindsets ?

Long-established segmentation strategies are no not as useful as they once were. Consumers’ decision-making processes are messy and complicated. Focusing on simple demographics like age, marital status and income don’t reveal useful insight. To design marketing strategies of the future, businesses must look at how people behave and what’s important to them when dealing with the problem they’re trying to solve.

Pro Tip

Just about every company can and should get started with mindset segmentation. The only time you may see a negative result is if you get too invasive and annoying, but this means you’re doing it wrong. To get started correctly with mindset segmentation, you have to make sure that you have loyal customers you can trust.