Have you noticed that some customers are harder to interact with than others? Perhaps you’re trying to understand why some customers engage with your sales pitch while others don’t have much to say? 

Although everyone has their own approach with customer service, it’s not one-size-fits-all. There are different types of customers with different needs and expectations of their sales experience with you. 

David Merril and Roger Reid formed a model of Social Styles that groups people according to the ways they interact with others. The Social Styles model was based on two criteria; assertiveness and responsiveness. 

Four customer types have been identified based on this model and you can use these to tailor your customer service skills to suit your customer and guarantee your sale.


The Driver 

The Driver is dominant and controlling. They drive things forward without hesitation. They’re the decisive type but whilst they like to make a decision fast, they’re not very detail-oriented

To recognise a Driver, you should look out for poor listening skills, outspoken comments and their need for control. If you want to complete a sale with a Driver, keep the sales experience short, remain professional and eliminate small talk. Drivers are highly goal oriented therefore, they value their time so, you should remain confident, get straight to the point of your sale and make your offer. 

The Analyst 

This type of customer is highly focused on details and prefers quality over quantity. Analysts don’t like to be rushed when making a decision. They tend to analyse, plan and make careful decisions. 

An Analyst will ask a lot of questions about your products although, they may appear inattentive and unresponsive at times. It’s good to check in with them during the sales process to ensure they are digesting all of the product information. Simply follow up with, Do you agree? or Is this what you meant by…?

You can expect a long sales process with an Analyst however, with patience and advanced product knowledge, you can easily ace this sale. 

The Amiable

The Amiable type of customer is sociable and easily forms relationships with other people. Amiable customers are calm, friendly and outgoing. They like to establish a personal connection before making a business decision. 

For this reason, an Amiable may ask for your personal opinion and preferences about your products or services. 

If you want to sell to an Amiable customer then be sure to build a personal connection with them by showing an interest in their needs. Position yourself as their personal advisor who stays true to your word about the product you are selling.

The Expressive

This type of customer is emotional and full of positive energy. Expressive customers are highly sociable with a great sense of humour. All of their decisions are based on intuition and they lose focus of their goals. 

Expressive customers will speak with confidence as they know what they want and will make sure you do too. They are incredibly responsive and enjoy interacting with others as they enjoy the attention. 

If you encounter an Expressive customer, prepare yourself for a high level of energy. Mirror their friendly attitude and explain to them how they’ll benefit from your product or service by giving them examples e.g. client testimonials or another staff member’s opinion. They prefer real life examples, visual aids and a personalised approach. 


What type of customer do you find the most challenging and how will you adjust your approach to suit their needs?