How a financial institution used a week-long mobile diary-study to understand the Consumer behaviours and attitudes of Gen-Z and millennials.

Like so many others, the financial industry continues to face many challenges as the advancements of technology mean that traditional methods of money management are quickly becoming outdated.

To further complicate matters, a whole new generation of clients have emerged for banking organisations. With consumers now making less and less cash transactions and switching to digital and card payments, it has become increasingly unlikely that banks will develop personal relationships with clients.


 
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The Challenge

One particular demographic present a major challenge for banking organizations; millennials.

As the first generation of true digital-natives, millennials now organise much of their lives through mobile. And as more and more of the services and that they use are digitalised, they expect to be able to manage their everyday tasks from their mobiles.

When our client approached us, they were at odds as to how they could understand millennials behaviours and attitudes when it came to banking. They knew that millennials values and priorities were not comparable to past generations, but understanding how this affected their decision-making when it came to their finances was difficult. The absence of face-to-face interactions with them meant that they no longer had any real-life insight into the motivations and needs of their customers. Not only had this been central to their ability to understand previous generations, but it was also their opportunity to communicate and connect with customers.

Convenience had come at a cost for our client and now they needed to find a new way to understand their customers.

The Goals

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Our clients objectives were to:

  • Understand millennials everyday behaviours and attitudes

  • Gain an insight into the needs and motivations of millennials

  • Identify new ways of communicating and connecting with millennials

 

The Solution

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When our client approached us, we were confident that we could offer a solution to their problem. Having assisted many other clients on projects involving millennials, we knew that mobile ethnography could offer the perfect periscope into the lives of this particular segment. As a generation that has become reliant on mobile technology, the ability to conduct their research using the Indeemo mobile app could get them unparalleled access to this new segment.

Working with Indeemo, our client decided that a one-size-fits-all approach was too generic to garner the insights they needed. Bunching millennials together as one homogenous group would not enable them to truly understand the diversity of needs and motivations. For this reason, Indeemo’s ability to segment their targets was invaluable. By splitting groups by age and gender, they were able to create 6 separate target groups to get a deeper understanding of the target segment.

Having recruited 48 respondents across these groups, our client then assigned them 11 scheduled tasks as part of a week-long diary study. Over the course of the week, respondents uploaded over 1,000 photos, video, screenshots and notes. The uploads covered everything from personal, family and work lives to their values, what they cared about and what brands they used.


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By accommodating a generation that is constantly browsing, snapping and communicating using a smartphone, our client used mobile-ethnography to embed themselves in the most authentic of moments that their young clients throughout the week. By conducting their research through a familiar medium rather than within the formal confines of a financial institution, they got their first true insights into the lives of millennials.

If you’d like to learn more about how mobile-ethnography could help a financial institution or banking organization understand millennials, please get in touch using the form below.


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Nothing delivers your insights more powerfully in a client debrief than video footage from a respondent, in their everyday context explaining exactly what your analysis has concluded.

Video Diary Studies using autoethnography have been successfully completed by our clients targeting respondents ranging from 8 to 80 years of age in both Business to Consumer and Business to Business contexts.

If your client briefs are looking for more video, please submit your details here and we will get back to you ASAP to talk through some use cases that might help achieve their objectives.

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