Positive Personae: Categorizing Your Customers

By CIOinsight  |  Posted 08-05-2005
Sample Personae: Some categories that might fit your customers.
Name Ernest

Age 45
Ethnicity White
Family status Married with kids
Occupation Call center manager
Income $60,000
Geography Dallas, Tex.
Education High school
Debt $2,950 credit card debt

Financial Stage College planning
Money personality Achiever

Account Specifics
Time in plan 10 years
Account balance $50,000
Level of contribution 8%
Risk tolerance Growth
Need to rebalance Yes
Progress to goal Not on track

Wants benefits of tax-deferred savings.
Wants to feel like he's involved in making financial decisions.

Does not feel confident he understands his investment choices.
Conservative investor; he could take more risk.

Hard work. Loyalty. Family.

Responsible. Committed. Cautious. Family-oriented. Down-to-earth. Tends to be more introverted.

Pet Peeves
Doesn't like overly talkative people, especially when it takes them a long time to get to the point.
Annoyed when he's not given all the facts.
Hates it when pressured to make rush decisions on the spot.

Fishing, coaching soccer, barbecuing.

Favorite movie star
Humphrey Bogart
Favorite show
The Sopranos

Favorite Indulgence
Personal Background
Ernest and his wife, Cathy, have two kids: Alison, their 9-year-old daughter, and Michael, their 6-year-old son. Family is the most important thing to Ernest.
At the same time, he feels like his siblings resent him for the middle-class life he's achieved. He grew up in a low-income family, and so concepts of planning for retirement and long-term savings were seen as a luxury, not a given.
Ernest has always been motivated by people who have earned their way in life. He doesn't seek advice from others very often—he prides himself on being able to rely on his own judgment—but he watches closely how others go about making decisions, and the subsequent results of those decisions.

Financial Situation
Ernest is determined to learn more about investing, but he finds it requires a lot of work. He wishes there were a simple way to learn about investment concepts, and to use what he's learned to manage his own money.