When a national event throws the entire country into peril, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors can change in unexpected ways. Your customers may not have the same goals and priorities they once did and your products and services may not apply to their lives in the same way anymore. This is the position a financial services company found themselves in after the Great Recession of 2008.
The C+R Research analytic team developed a quantitative approach to gain post-recession insights into one of the most critical customer segments to the financial services company.
In order to most effectively promote their services, an insurance and financial services company needed to understand how the recession affected affluent consumers in terms of their financial goals, attitudes towards financial products, and relationships with financial advisors.
A mid-sized financial services company needed a post-recession consumer profile of one of their key consumer markets; individuals with investable assets of $500,000 or more living within specific geographic areas in the US.
The company needed to understand what the goals and desires of these consumers were and how they may have changed after the recession. They wanted to better communicate with and serve their customers by providing products and services they may desire with their changing goals and attitudes.
The company was specifically looking to better reach their current customers and recruit new customers with similar attributes for financial advising services.
The project was highly focused because of the specific qualifications of this niche target market. Any approach needed the ability to pre-qualify individuals to a large extent. Responses could only be from those who were within a specified financial threshold, involved in making financial decisions, and located in a set of geographic regions.
The insights gathered would help the financial services company develop messaging, products, and services that were relevant after the recession.
The research we conducted showed critical themes for the demographic market concerning how financial planning and attitudes have changed since 2007/2008 among wealthy consumers.
Only 11% of affluent consumers felt the recession had absolutely no bearing on their financial behavior which mean that pre-recession products and messages were at risk for being outdated to almost 89% of their primary customer base.
In addition, the financial services company received data on the level and type of interest their target market had in financial matters. Our researchers were able to determine the target market's confidence level in their ability to achieve their financial goals and their openness to getting professional financial guidance. They were also able to uncover attitudinal nuances between different demographic subsets like age, gender, income level and more.
Based on the results, C+R Research provided recommendations on product and messaging opportunities extracted from recurring themes and insights. The recommendations took into account the factors that were most and least important to consumers for post-recession financial services.
The company was able to use the insights to refine and alter the approach of their financial advisor services for customers with over $500,000 in investable assets
The research team developed a quantitative online survey to collect relevant data from this specific target market. The survey was primarily an awareness and usage study to gain necessary insights.
Because the target market was so niche and defined, the team developed a mechanism to pre-qualify survey takers. Participants were asked a detailed set of expertly developed questions before the full questionnaire to screen for their eligibility and if they did not fall within certain parameters, they were dismissed from the survey.
Qualified respondents continued to an in-depth consumer survey that took approximately 20 minutes to complete.
Data gathered from the survey was analyzed by our researchers and advanced analytics team and key insights and recommendations were provided to the financial services company. The results helped the brand deeply understand and connect with this valuable segment of consumers.
The results showed discrepancies between affluent consumers' priorities and their actual behaviors. We also highlighted key product and marketing opportunities based on their shifting priorities, decision making habits, and perceptions of financial professionals - which the client used to develop more compelling services and messaging.