I may earn a commission from the companies mentioned in this post. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.
Understanding your personality type can have a really powerful impact on your business, and can help you structure a high performing and successful business model.
In Rebel Boss Ladies episode 028, I finally took a personality test and it turns out that I am an INFP-T, or a mediator. I recommend finding out your personality type before listening to this episode, you can do that by going to 16 Personalities, which lets you take a free Meyers-Briggs assessment.
Now I've never really been a huge fan of putting labels on myself and I think that's why I never took the test. But as my business has grown every year, and particularly a lot over the past 12 months, I realized I needed to be more open minded to this kind of information.
In this episode, I’m going to talk to my good friend Brit Kolo about why knowing your personality type is important when you’re creating your business strategy. She’s the creator of the Marketing Personality Type Framework at marketingpersonalities.com, as well as the host of the Marketing Personalities podcast.
Through Brit's framework you are able to match your Myers-Briggs personality type with a marketing strategy. Today, she's here to shake up your approach to marketing and inspire you to grow your business in a really feel good way.
As you’re listening to this episode, I hope you’ll start thinking about how YOUR personality type affects you and your business. The purpose of this episode is not for you to learn about my personality type. It's for you to learn how you can take information about yourself and your personality and begin to customize your business around that, rather than the other way around.
Instead of forcing yourself to fit molds, Brit will help you to understand how to do the opposite so that you can really enjoy your business and marketing.
The Marketing Personality framework matches entrepreneurs with their best marketing strategy based on their Myers-Briggs personality type.
What is a Myers-Briggs personality type? Brit describes it as the “gold standard of personality typing.” This type of assessment will help you determine what personality type you are, out of the 16 different personality types established by the test.
She admits that it’s not a perfect science, though. There are a lot of different people in the world and only 16 personality types, so there may be some gaps.
Even so, Brit says that the Myers-Briggs assessment is an incredibly helpful tool. It can help you show up in your marketing strategy, your business, and your life in general.
As you keep reading, Brit herself is an ENFJ and I’m an INFP. We’ll be talking about some pretty specific stuff related to these personality types, which will hopefully show you how much your personality type can affect your business.
The first few times I took the Myers-Briggs test, I didn’t love my result. I think this affected the way I thought about personality tests up until now, when Brit showed me how important it is to connect your personality type to your business strategy.
Brit says it’s possible to get a result that you don’t agree with because of personal biases. If you’ve ever felt this way after a personality test, she recommends taking the test again and being completely honest because you may agree more with your results.
“I remember taking this assessment back when I was in high school and I I was taking the test because it was going to help me know… what I should go to college for. I already had an idea of what I wanted to go to school for, so I was kind of answering the questions a little biased so I would get the answer that I wanted… That was not a true true read of what my actual personality type was.”
If you’re answering a certain way based on what you think your school or workplace are looking for, you definitely won’t get an accurate reading of your personality. Brit says this is not the way you should be going about taking the test.
“You really got to go into these things from a from a really true and honest place and not afraid of what result you might get because at the at its best, and really why it exists, is to give you information about yourself to validate the ways in which you do truly naturally show up in the world.”
She also comes across people who are hesitant to take the test because they don’t want to be labelled as a certain personality type.
Brit says while it’s important to be careful about the “boxes” that we can put ourselves in, it’s also really freeing to know your personality type. These assessments aren’t supposed to limit us, and instead can give us a deeper level of self-awareness.
“I really encourage you to see the beauty in this deeper level of self-awareness and see it as your unique strengths and your superpowers and really once you know this you can leverage it in so many different ways which is going to make you even more powerful and more of a force to be reckoned with rather than someone that's now been put in a box.”
I learned from taking the Myers-Briggs test that I’m an INFP-T, or a mediator. Brit helped me to understand what this means for me and my business, and showed me how I can adapt my business to this new information.
Brit wants to emphasize that “there is no one better personality type for marketing than any of the others. That's the beauty of marketing personalities. You get to find what's best for you and no one's better than anyone else.”
Knowing your personality type can help you determine where it’s best for you to put your energy, how you should make decisions, and what marketing decisions are best for you and your business.
I’m an INFP, and Brit emphasizes that this means I’m “mission-driven.” I’m motivated by purpose (which is true!) and without understanding the clear reason behind what I’m doing, I’m out.
She said that for INFPs, “as long as you can identify exactly why you're doing something and you believe in that mission, you believe in that why, you're all in.”
How does this translate to a marketing strategy? She emphasizes that for INFPs “when it comes to their marketing strategy, to find a way to make the marketing and the thing that you're doing really not central to you as the entrepreneur. It's more about bringing in lots of people involved and sharing the wealth of that experience.”
This is something I completely agreed with. Some of my previous projects that were collaborations between me and other business owners, like my Virtual Summit, went extremely well and was something that really motivated me.
Brit also explains how your personality type can also help you determine what really motivates you in the long run.
For me and other INFPs, this means focusing on the meaning and the mission, and bringing people along as well. “In my suggestions to INFPs, sometimes I reference this as like pairing your business effort with a charity, giving back or relief effort… you can pair your business effort with a giving back effort in a way that has nothing to do with money.”
She explains that this doesn’t have to be a big deal or a huge expense, but can provide a sense of meaning behind the work, which drives INFPs. Working something like this into a business model can help people with this personality type feel good about what they’re doing, which then can translate into their marketing strategy.
Knowing your personality type can also indicate the best type of working style for you and your interaction with others.
Determining whether or not you’re an introvert or an extrovert, and how that interacts with your other personality markers, can help you to see what you need from other people in your business. Most people are on a sliding scale and not purely one or the other, but it can help indicate what you’re looking for in terms of colleagues and clients.
Learning about the best marketing strategies for your personality type is essential, because it can help you start to identify what feels good when you’re running your business and what doesn’t.
“This is why this matters. When you show up feeling fake sales-y, inauthentic, not good about your marketing strategy, your audience is going to pick up on that low grade not good energy and they're gonna be repelled by it.”
When you’re running your business or strategizing in a way that contradicts your personality type, your audience will notice and they may not trust you. But if you do the opposite, and align your business with who you are, your audience will lean into that.
Brit emphasizes that “when we can come at our marketing strategy from a place that aligns with who we naturally are, and in this case we're utilizing your personality type to identify what's going to feel good, when you show up feeling good in your marketing your audience will feel good.”
Understanding your personality type can also show you what your strengths and weaknesses are and help you build your business plan around that.
You shouldn’t be scared of learning about your weaknesses. Remember that learning about them doesn’t limit or hold you back, and instead can just make you aware of what you need to consider when developing a marketing strategy. Knowing your weaknesses allows “you can be aware of it and do something about it.”
As an INFP, I learned that I can get really caught up in theoretical thought patterns. This may not necessarily be a bad thing, unless it gets taken too far.
“It might get you into a place of inaction because you're always thinking about the future potential and the theoretical while this could happen and that could happen.”
But just knowing this and other weaknesses can be helpful, because it can help you pull yourself out of those limiting factors.
“The real key question to ask is am I okay with that? And if you are okay with it, your answer is probably going to be I'm OK with that to a point. And then the next question is OK so then what's my limit here?”
Knowing your weaknesses can help you put together a plan to turn them into strengths. If theoretical, big picture thought patterns are my weakness, then I can set aside time to be able to do that, while also ensuring that I set aside time to turn those thoughts into action later.
If you’ve taken a personality test and some of the weaknesses or limiting factors in the profile resonate with you, start asking yourself a few questions. “To what point is that helpful? And when does that kind of stop being helpful? What can I do about that tipping point to keep me in the helpful part of it and out of the spinning wheels part of it?”
Once you learn the strengths and limiting factors of your personality type, make sure you act on that knowledge. You may need to change your work pattern, or hire someone to do certain parts of your work for you, in order to make sure that you’re working to your best potential.
So what should you do once you know this? Brit says, “anybody that's listening to this can nod their heads in agreement to the fact that there are so many shoulds in marketing and starting your own business… They are like we can come up with all of the reasons not to do that if it doesn’t feel right for us.”
To get out of the “should” pattern, which can make you feel guilty, Brit recommends switching your “shoulds” to “coulds”.
She had a client who was a consultant that felt like she “should” be doing video calls, even though she felt better about having phone calls.
Brit’s advice for her client? “Instead of saying should, you say, ok I could be doing the data. I could be doing video calls. And then that naturally leads you to: but do I want to? Do I need to?”
Using could opens up a whole list of options, where should shuts down your options. It can make you believe that you’re doing something wrong, when really you can think about this as finding a better way forward.
Remember, you never have to be doing anything. Make sure you’re running your business the way that you want to, and not because you feel a sense of obligation towards the way it “should” be done.
“You've got lots of options and I extend that to anybody. When you identify the things that don't come as naturally to you don't let that put you into this shame spiral. Turn that should into a could and identify your options from there.”
If you’re not at the best place to hire someone to cover the parts of your business that don’t come naturally to you, don’t worry. There are other ways to adapt your marketing strategy to make sure you’re still moving forward.
First, Brit recommends letting go of some of the things that you don’t want to do, and instead putting your energy towards everything in your BEST marketing strategy. Letting go of some things won’t affect you too much, but putting effort into the things that matter will really help you in the long run.
“If you were to take your marketing personality type results and what I recommend to you as your best marketing strategy and just do that for a consistent 90 days and just let go of everything that doesn't fall under that category, I promise you will see business growth.”
This means 90 days of consistent action on the focused things that you’re really good at. This may change your business a lot, but it will help.
Once you’ve started seeing the changes and more success, that’s when you can start hiring other people to finish putting all of the pieces together. A great example is Facebook ads – if you don’t feel comfortable with them, you should focus all of your energy on what you are good at for 90-180 days. Eventually your business will grow to the point where Facebook ads could improve the growth rate of your business, and you’ll be able to hire out someone to do those for you.
There are four different personality tribes, which can help you determine where your energy will be generated from and what you should start with your marketing strategy. These are determined by the two middle letters of the Myers-Briggs personality types.
As an INFP, I’m in the diplomat tribe, along with the INFJ, ENFJ and INFP personality types. The diplomat tribe is motivated by understanding the big “why” and the mission behind anything and everything in your business. Creating systems that help you identify that why and making sure that you resonate with it can really help you in your marketing strategy.
The analyst tribe is made up of the INTJ, INTP, ENTJ and ENTP personality types. Analysts start with strategy. If you’re an analyst, before you jump into anything you probably want to create a system around it, break down a big picture goal into smaller steps and create a strategy before putting anything into play.
ISTJ, ISFJ, ESTJ and ESFJs are all in the sentinel tribe. Sentinels start with organization, and for them it’s not a procrastination technique. Before a sentinel jumps into anything, they may feel like they need to organize whatever they need to in order to get started.
Finally, the fourth tribe is the explorer tribe, which is made up of ISTP, ISFP, ESTP and ESFPs. Explorers need to start with action, and can just jump right in to whatever they’re starting. They need to get their hands dirty and maybe mess up a few times in order to learn and move forward.
Knowing your tribe can help you to identify where the best place is for you to start. Different tribes all have different starting points when it comes to marketing, and you should definitely focus your strategy around what is best for you. “Knowing where to start for you can be so catalyzing, like that can really set anything you do in your business up for success because you're starting where you need to start.”
It can also help you understand the people around you in both your personal and professional lives. This can help when you’re collaborating or working with other people because they may need to start in a different place than you do.
“Knowing that intel can really make or break a project because, for instance, if you are an INFP like Eden and you've got to really start with that mission and that why, but maybe you're around a lot of people who are an analyst tribe that really need to start with strategy. They might take, without knowing they don't mean to do this, they might take you into strategy before you're ready before you even know why you're doing it. And that can be a really frustrating place.”
Hopefully this is an aha moment for you. Knowing your tribe and your starting place can help you to understand why certain things might frustrate or paralyze you. It can also help you to think a little better about personal life, romantic relationships, parenting and more.
If you want to learn more about your best marketing strategy, head over to 16 Personalities to take your free Myers-Briggs personality test.
Next, download this free report from Brit that will help you pin down exactly the marketing strategies that you should be using to be successful.
If you want to learn more about how your personality type can affect your marketing strategy, check out Brit’s podcast, ‘Marketing Personalities.’
Her episodes are a lot like this one. After she launched her site Marketing Personalities in 2018, she realized the direction her business was headed in and decided to only focus on bringing strong content to people about personality types and marketing decisions.
Her podcast focuses on business owners and their unique personality types, and what that means for their marketing strategy.
Brit’s goal is to talk to all 16 personality types, so anyone can jump in and listen to an episode that will resonate specifically with their personality. She wants it to be helpful and informative to anyone listening, and also supportive for all of her listeners.
//LINKS IN THE SHOW//
Check out Brit's site here – https://www.marketingpersonalities.com/
Listen to the Marketing Personalities Podcast here – https://www.marketingpersonalities.com/category/podcast/
Take your free Myers-Briggs Personality Assessment here – https://www.16personalities.com/