This psychology study could increase your advertising ROI by 50%


Supreme Member
Sep 18, 2010
I do a lot of reading and my interests include psychology, sociology and behavioural evolution. Over the years I've learned and observed many things I've used to give me an edge when it comes to sales and business development. If you understand why people behave and think the way they do, that gives you the ability to both predict and influence their behaviour - which means it's easier to sell to them.

I came across a psychology study recently which is a great example of how you could use seemingly irrelevant information to improve your sales.

This study found that when people approach a new decade of their life, they reflect more on the meaning of their life. They do this more when their age ends with a 9 (29, 39, 49 etc.).
The interesting thing is that this self-reflection affects their behaviour and makes them more likely to make changes in their lives. When you think about it, it makes sense.
But the really interesting thing is the things these 9-enders (that's the name they gave them) are more likely to do.

They found they were much more likely to join dating sites catering to having affairs (18% more) and to take up marathon running (48% more)

If that's the case, it stands to reason that if you are advertising in those niches, you will get an 18% and 48% better response rate if you target the 29, 39 and 49 year olds.

A couple of other things they found 9-enders were more likely to do is buy life insurance and have cosmetic surgery (which again makes a lot of sense) - both of which are very lucrative!

I am not in IM, nor do we focus on media buying so I have not tested this. I have been seriously considering doing so for a few weeks. I even started making a list of other potential niches and writing a few advertising ideas down. But we have so many projects planned for this year it's just not going to happen.

So instead, I am throwing the information out to you guys and maybe some of you advertising and media buying specialists can benefit from it. If anyone does test it, I'd be fascinated to hear your results.

Whether you test it or not though, I also made this post to demonstrate that you can find information that benefits your business in some of the most unlikely places.

Cheers all.
The subjects that you mentioned are also my interests.
Can I get the article or the source where you got the info to read more a about it.
You can use facebook, but you have to setup a different campaign for each age that ends in 9.

Exactly right.

Here's the way I was planning it:

For each project, set up 10 campaigns for one decade (20, 21, 22,... 29)
Track the results to see if the 9-ender age had a better response rate.
If that was the case, focus future campaigns purely on the age ending with 9.

I was also thinking of doing that for each decade separately to see if there was an even better result for 29, 39, 49 year olds.

My thought process was that for each niche (dating, marathons, insurance etc.) there may be an optimal decade too - for example, I thought 49 year olds may be more interested in insurance than 19 year olds.

The beauty of doing that is it doesn't cost anything extra - just split each campaign into sets of 10 and see if the effect was there.
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