Consumer psychologists are people that hold a psychology degree, but are not practitioners in a clinical healthcare context. Instead, they use their degree to analyse and understand consumer behaviour, usually in the context of buying trends and product selection.
These guys use their expertise to provide insights into marketing agencies, market research organisations and companies that sell products and services to the public.
If you enter this profession, you’ll be analysing demographic data, undertaking research through interviews and focus groups, and then presenting your findings and suggestions to your clients.
Consumer psychologists’ expert insights into consumer behaviour allow marketing executives to alter their campaigns accordingly so that they can maximise product sales.
Salary & benefits
Salaries for consumer psychologists in junior positions range between £15,000 and £30,000 per annum, while more senior professionals may earn between £30,000 and £50,000. Consumer psychologists with over ten years of experience may earn up to £75,000 a year.
Working nine-to-five is the way you’ll make your living and your professional life will mostly be dominated by office-based work.
However, project-based assignments across different markets, products and services, and geographic locations are common for many consumer psychologists, which may mean travelling around the country from time to time.
Consumer psychologist positions are few and far between. It is, therefore, advisable to obtain a degree in psychology (2:1 minimum) to compete against other candidates.
You’ll also need a decent amount of hands-on market research experience and a detailed knowledge of marketing and consumer behaviour.
Consumer psychologists also need to have strong commercial awareness and fantastic communication and presentation skills.
Training & progression
There is no mandated training programme for consumer psychologists. It’s all about gaining hands-on experience and learning from senior colleagues.
Similarly, career growth is based on your personal expertise, experience and performance.
Freelance assignments are a profitable alternative for experienced consumer psychologists. Many also turn to higher academic pursuits, focusing on advanced research across a variety of disciplines, not just consumer behaviour.