Personality Type Linked to Poker Players' Success

Poker players are key contributors to the bottom line at most casinos.  On the other hand, poker players are intent on winning when they set out for a night of gaming. They enjoy beating the other players and beating the house.  Do the most successful poker players share personality traits?

New research published by Michael Laakasuo at the University of Helsinki (Finland) focused on poker players and their personalities. Laakasuo and his colleagues surveyed over 700 self-​reported poker players.  These players filled out a form designed to reveal specific aspects of their personalities. Researchers feel their strategy is sound because basic personality aspects change little over the course of time. For example, a person who’s highly emotional or neurotic is likely to be that way for their entire life.

It turns out that highly emotional folks are not great poker players. The research confirmed what many have suspected all along. The most successful players at the game “tend to be cool, calm, and difficult to rattle.” These consumers exhibit steady emotional stability. The poker pros excel at balancing stress while calculating risk as they fulfill their desire to win. The in-​person poker players also tend to be extroverted and ‘open to experience.’ These traits may explain why they can walk into a new casino and not feel stressed. Researchers also noted that online poker players may not have quite the same level of extroverted personality but likely still possess emotional stability.

More men, 57.9%, than women, 42.1%, make up the poker and card playing audience. These consumers also enjoy other forms of gambling. For example, 44% play the lottery. That number is significantly higher than average. In the next year, about 37% of these consumers intend to visit a casino. This number is also nearly 100% higher than average according to AudienceSCAN. In the next year, about 24% of poker and card players expect to buy new tires and living room furniture. They may be planning to spend their winnings on these items!

In the past year, 18% of these audience members have started an online search after reading a newspaper ad or hearing a radio commercial. These formats may be a good way for casinos to reach local poker players.

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the Audience Intelligence Reports in AdMall.

Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.