Last-Minute Shoppers Like Luxury Brands?

Study compares behavior of early-bird and 11th-hour consumers

Don’t be too hard on the last minute shoppers in your life. In fact, you should probably encourage their procrastination: New data suggest last minute shoppers just might end up giving the most expensive gifts.

Anticipating the holiday shopping mania, consumer Internet company Meebo mined its data and ran a study of more than 2,000 shoppers (using its Mindset Media technology) to look at how personality traits could determine consumer preferences.

They found that beyond being “irresponsible,” “spontaneous,” and “fanciful," last minute shoppers were 45 percent more likely than regular shoppers to purchase luxury brands and 27 percent more likely to plan to spend more on holiday shopping this year than last year.

Early bird shoppers, on the other hand, are “super responsible,” “risk averse” and more likely to “think of others." But they are a third (34 percent) more likely to say they’re bargain hunters and 30 percent more likely to use coupons.

Shoppers who were neither early birds nor last minute laggards were two-thirds (65 percent) more likely to be a careful spender, Meebo said.

Meebo president Martin Green says that for brand advertisers, demographic data is insufficient for web targeting because it doesn’t provide insight into purchase intent and context.

“Rather your taste and personality traits are the big determinants of whether you buy Coke or Pepsi or a BMW or an Audi,” he says.

Those choices aren’t always either/or scenarios. But psychographic information still provides a deeper window into the kinds of purchases consumers are likely to make.

To divine consumer preferences by personality trait, says Green, Meebo used data from its 250 million monthly unique users as well as surveys from its Mindset Media research arm.

“We formed patterns around people and what their personality traits are. Are they extroverted, introverted, more likely to be creative or pragmatic?” he says. “And then we associated those traits with validated brand preferences and behavioral data.”

Meebo also compared behaviors for Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers. Take a look at a few findings below.

Black Friday Shoppers

  • tend to be optimistic and extraverted
  • 29 percent more likely to be bargain hunters
  • 32 percent more likely to buy a handheld video game console as a gift
  • 31 percent more likely to say they'll spend more this year vs last

    Cyber Monday Shoppers

  • tend to be open and introverted
  • 28% more likely to buy an ereader as a gift