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How to Identify and Sell to 4 Personality Types

Article Highlights:

  • Learn how to identify 4 main personality types.
  • Tailor your approach for customers based on their traits.

Chances are, at some point in your life, you have taken a personality assessment. What did it tell you? Are you laid-back? A worrier? Detail-oriented?

It goes without saying that like you, consumers have their own personality types as well, and those personalities can add a layer of complexity to the buying process. In fact, they may even make or break a sale in situations where you don’t know how to best work with the person.

Most personality assessments identify four personality types. What are those four types, and how do you identify them? What’s the best way of working with each of them during the buying process?


Key Characteristics: Direct and decisive. Can be demanding and outspoken. You’ll know you’re talking to a driver based on his or her eye-contact, confident demeanor, and down-to-business attitude.

How to Work with a Driver: There’s no dancing around the subject. A driver wants an efficient car buying experience and specific answers to their questions. You’ll have to be on your toes, but if you can quickly and precisely answer questions while eliminating as many hassles during the buying process as possible, you should have no problem turning drivers into repeat buyers for your dealership.


Key Characteristics: Detail-oriented, critical, and cautious. They are systematic in their buying approach and will usually come to the lot prepared with questions since they will have done more research than the average consumer. Analyticals will ask why you’re doing something and focus on the specific steps of the buying process.

How to Work with an Analytical: Because analyticals value information and “having all the answers,” they may take longer to make a decision than others. Be willing to answer their questions and try to not to hurry them along. Analtyicals like to thoroughly think through a purchase before making a decision and will retreat if you push them too hard. Be patient, keep them informed, and you’ll win the sale.


Key Characteristics: Calm and steady is an amiable’s mantra. They tend to be easy-going and considerate. Amiables value friendliness, respect, and cooperation. When a person walks on the lot and within five minutes you feel like you’re talking to an old friend, that’s an amiable.

How to Work with an Amiable: Amiables are deliberate with their actions, so it may take them a while to come to a decision. They do not like to be hurried, so show patience and respect. They are quite social, so a smile and a little conversation goes a long way. Once you have an amiable on your side, chances are you have a lifelong customer.


Key Characteristics: Enthusiastic and approachable. Creative and social. They can be impulsive and more emotional than other personality types. Expressives are generally a lot of fun to be around and high-energy.

How to Work with an Expressive: There’s no doubt that you will enjoy selling to expressives. Their friendly and warm personalities make them enjoyable to work with. These people don’t weigh the facts as much as others and rely on their intuition when making a decision. They can also be impulsive and change their minds frequently. Be flexible and focus on how to keep them engaged during the buying process.


Even though I’ve identified four personality types in this article, nobody fits into just one category. Most individuals tend to be a mixture of personality types, and you’ll have to mold your approach to each individual. But, one thing is for certain, regardless of personality type. People value a personalized and engaging buying experience. From drivers to amiables, analyticals to expressives, they all want to walk into a dealership that provides a buying experience that fits them. Reynolds Retail Management System provides you with the tools you need to keep people engaged and informed, all while helping you sell more vehicles and services. See what I mean by going to www.reyrey.ca/RMS.

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Former Director, Product Planning, CRM and Variable Ops

Ed Pontis is the former Director of Product Planning at Reynolds and Reynolds for CRM and variable operations solutions including Contact Management, the docuPAD® System, Desking, and more. Ed was a director in a large international consulting firm, bringing in leading practices from these segments to Reynolds.

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