The 4 types of people: How to make customer acquisition a no-brainer

Reading time 8 minutes
The 4 types of people: How to make customer acquisition a no-brainer

Both in private and professional everyday life you will always meet the same 4 types of people. In the communication with these people, without exception, there is always a Acquisition process takes place. Sometimes subconsciously. Sometimes consciously.

You sell your kids in the evening conversation that they should already go to bed at 7pm. The first date is really nothing more than a cold call and your wedding is the signing of the contract.

Acquisition is your daily business and the right communication is the key.

But how can you address your customers optimally in the sales talk? And what role do the four types of people play?

Imagine a large pond: There are different fish swimming in it. Your goal is to catch the red fish. They prefer the earthworm as bait. But you are more a fan of the flashing lure.

However, to use this would be complete nonsense. Because: The bait must taste good to the fish and not to the angler. The same applies to your customers. Treat others the way they want to be treated and not the way you would like to be treated.

In this article, we want to introduce you to the 4 types of people so you can convert prospects into customers more often in the future. Because every Type of person needs a special approach so that you can build a relationship with it.

The 4 personalities: Know your customers

In order to sell successfully, it is important that you know your counterpart. It is of great advantage that you are familiar with the 4 types of people. Because the more you get to know your customers, the better the selling will work.

However, a cursory conversation between the door and the corner is not enough. Get involved with your customer. To facilitate this process, Gereon Jörn has defined 4 types of people in more detail.

Gereon Jörn is a coach and trainer for sales and distribution with a focus on the topic of People skills. With the help of his classification into the 4 types of people, it will be easier for you to address your customers in a goal-oriented and effective way. Because in each of us there is each of the 4 temperaments. However, not all of them are equally dominant.

To be able to pick up your customers, you should be aware that each of the 4 types of people ticks differently and therefore also needs an individual approach.

The temperament theory is based on the theories of Hippocrates (460-370 B.C.) and can help you even today in your customer acquisition.

What are the 4 types of people?

Type 1 - the choleric

What comes to mind when you think of a choleric person? You probably associate many negative qualities with a choleric person.

The image of a red-faced person gesticulating wildly and snorting with rage quickly appears in your mind's eye.

However, a choleric person also has its positive qualities. Thus, he is self-confident, competitive and goal-oriented.

In addition, he is attuned to action and is not afraid of conflict. He quickly takes the lead, shows himself tough in taking and giving.

The choleric person appears arrogant to those around him. He pursues goals resolutely, showing little regard for the emotions of those around him.

The choleric is the most dominant of the 4 types of people.

Here we have listed some of the positive and negative traits that characterize the choleric...


  • dominant
  • confidently
  • independent
  • Authoritarian
  • strategic


  • ruthless
  • arrogant
  • intolerant
  • stubborn
  • impatient

Do any of these traits sound familiar? The basic characteristics of a choleric person should always be kept in mind, as this is a complicated and sometimes difficult type of person to get along with.

You should not "bother" this type of customer with long-winded small talk and unnecessary information.

At best, you will cause an annoyed snort on the customer's side. Choleric people prefer clear information and goal-oriented action to long and rambling talk.

Knowing this, you can adjust your sales strategy to the characteristics of a choleric person. Treat him the way he wants to be treated. Below you will find a few useful tips for dealing with the choleric...

Tips for dealing with the choleric

  • Avoid beating around the bush.
  • Let his Self-confidence not unsettle.
  • Give precise answers and make clear statements.
  • Don't let insensitive comments affect you.
  • Get to the heart of the benefits of your products.

Type 2 - the melancholic

The following situation is probably familiar to you: There's this one customer who has already emailed you a list of questions before you've even sent a quote.

A customer who wants to know everything down to the smallest detail. Who leaves nothing open and acts precisely and carefully. This is usually the most "demanding" of the 4 types of people in the business world.

In such a case you have a melancholic in front of you. This person questions everything, is very analytical and detail-oriented. High standards and perfection are part of his basic attitude.

At work you should be well prepared when you have to deal with the melancholic. This person is guaranteed to ask you many questions.

Meaning: know your facts, get informed, and be prepared for objections.

The melancholic wants to know everything in order to avoid bad decisions that stand in the way of his personal success. Since the melancholic is a head person, he is extremely predictable. You can take advantage of this by preparing yourself thoroughly.


  • factual
  • analytical
  • scrutinizing
  • responsible
  • formed


  • pessimistic
  • inflexible
  • undecided.
  • perfectionist
  • alluring

With a melancholic, you should be aware that communication can sometimes be a challenge.

You should not scare away this type of customer with half-knowledge and ill-considered statements.

If you are not sufficiently informed about a product or service, the melancholic will keep his distance from you because he does not perceive you as professional.

To help you deal with melancholy better, we've prepared some tips below that you can use in the future....

Tips for dealing with melancholic

  • Avoid being unprepared during conversations.
  • Back up your statements with facts and figures.
  • Stick to agreements (e.g. appointments).
  • Offer references that highlight your quality.
  • Make it clear that you are reliable and a professional.

Type 3 - The Phlegmatic

Do you find it difficult to have uncomfortable conversations? Taking the initiative in meetings and expressing your opinion? Is harmony important to you and are you more of a social personality?

If that's the case, then you belong to the phlegmatic group of people.

Phlegmatics are characterized by a high capacity for empathy, are mindful and calm. If your client is a phlegmatic, they don't want to step on anyone's toes and have high value anchors.

Imagine addressing this type of customer like a choleric person. It would probably backfire here. Why would it backfire? It's simple. The phlegmatic is the most sensitive of the 4 types of people.

While small talk is rather undesirable for the choleric, the phlegmatic is happy about the exchange and the enrichment. Hard facts in dealing with him, on the other hand, meet rather little Enthusiasm.


  • high empathic capacity
  • kind & selfless
  • in need of harmony
  • strong value system
  • passionate


  • poor analytical skills
  • is quick to take personal offence
  • is often very sensitive
  • has a hard time letting people get to him
  • occasionally neglects details

Important: When dealing with phlegmatic people, you should always make sure to create a harmonious atmosphere.

Because the phlegmatic is, as already mentioned, the most sensitive of the 4 types of people.

With this type of customer you can convince through friendliness and a charismatic appearance.

If you come across as too dominant, the phlegmatic person will feel intimidated and therefore keep his distance.

Want to learn how to better deal with the phlegmatic? Below we have prepared some tips that you can use when dealing with this guy to improve your success.

Tips in dealing with the phlegmatic:

  • A phlegmatic needs security, don't unsettle him.
  • Provide a harmonious and warm environment.
  • Always behave in a friendly and courteous manner.
  • Appeal to the value system of the phlegmatic.
  • Make it clear that you are reliable and a professional.

Type 4 - The Sanguine

The office door opens, the sanguine comes in and is bursting with energy. With verve and ecstasy, the most enthusiastic of the 4 types of people devotes himself to all his tasks.

"The main thing is fun" is the Life motto. And if this results in popularity and confirmation for him, all the better.

Sometimes he acts tactlessly and likes to interfere in matters that do not concern him. On the other hand, a sanguine is an incredible source of energy.

And again, treat each person the way they want to be treated. A sanguine wants a lot of contact! So align yourself with that. After all, this is the most sociable of the 4 types of people.


  • energetic and enthusiastic
  • outgoing and extroverted
  • adventurous and proactive
  • is interested in his fellow man
  • charming and passionate


  • disorganized and untidy
  • often unreliable
  • is easily stressed
  • dislikes following rules
  • Numbers often have a disturbing effect

Do you often have sanguine people among your clients? If so, you should always make sure that your communication is energetic and enthusiastic.

The sanguine can therefore be convinced more with emotions and less with information. So here it is about making an initiative and open impression.

You want to learn a better way to deal with the sanguine? Below we have prepared some tips that you can use when dealing with the sanguine.

Tips for dealing with the sanguine

  • Use emotion instead of information in communication.
  • Be open and optimistic in the conversation.
  • Avoid pressuring the sanguine.
  • Don't bore him with restraint.
  • Avoid boring the sanguine with numbers.

The 4 types of people - How to read people effectively

You realize, all 4 types of people need different treatment and all types choose to buy for different reasons.

People always love people who are like them or want to be like them. If you adapt your sales strategy to this and don't approach all customers in the same way, you will be able to optimize your sales.

To help you succeed, we have prepared a video by Dr. Stefan Frädrich below. In this video you will learn how to read people better.

This gives you the opportunity to go into more detail about the 4 types of people.

Conclusion: The 4 types of people - How to convince your customers of your products

In this article, we've introduced you to the 4 types of people you'll find in each of your clients over time.

By using the tips from this article, you will be able to better understand your customers so that you can better sell your products or services.

In the following we have listed all 4 types of people with their most important characteristics.

The 4 types of people at a glance

  • The choleric one: strong-willed, passionate, direct
  • The Melancholic: introvert, sensitive, suspicious
  • The Phlegmatic: neat, diplomatic, reliable
  • The Sanguine: extroverted, optimistic, talkative

Which of the 4 types of people do you often deal with? Do you find yourself in one of the 4 types of people?

Of course, there are other factors that will determine whether you succeed as an entrepreneur. If you want to learn more, you will find here another article we'd like to recommend to you.

You may also be interested in learning more about yourself. The more you know about yourself, the more fulfilled you live. And that is exactly the goal of Greator. Our free personality test helps you to understand your personal behaviour - and to live your strengths to the full.

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