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PR and the science of personality

Posted by Debby Penton on 26th September 2016

Digital communication has made PR increasingly measureable and focused on business impact, but true client satisfaction is rare without the underpinning of a strong client-agency relationship.

We spend ages interrogating a client brief and trying to understand how to best engage their target audiences, but how much time do we really take to understand the actual client contacts?

Fortunately for those of us who don’t do this instinctively, there is a science to help understand relationship building, and it focuses on personality-type matching.

Matching individuals and teams to clients and understanding people’s personality types is something that’s underpinned how we do things at Wildfire since we started the agency. This practice can also help colleagues understand and work with each other better.

Myers Briggs is probably the most famous model for mapping personality type. However, we favour Insights Discovery, which is a much simpler process involving four easy-to-remember colours, making it an efficient way to think about and manage personality types.

According to Insights Discovery, most people are a mix of two colours, with one colour dominating the other. It is rare, but some people can be evenly balanced. The most important thing to remember is that there is no ‘bad’ colour or ‘best’ colour – but being aware of each colour type’s strengths and preferences is key to making your relationships as effective as possible.



By using this system to identify what personality type you are and what your clients are, your team can learn how to understand the client and adapt accordingly. Complementing the clients’ strengths in terms of creativity or being process-driven often makes the strongest teams and can provide the key to delivering long-term client satisfaction.

In case you’re interested, I’m a Yellow/Red – which probably explains the short article and lack of extensive detail…


Debby Penton

Motivated, competitive and highly experienced, Debby drives excellence across the agency and leads by example, going the extra mile to create stand-out campaigns and a dynamic agency culture. As CEO, Debby champions a new breed of PR that meets the evolving communication needs of today’s tech companies.