I spent the weekend crafting answers to the many great questions people sent during and after our “2010 Financial Services Trends” webinar. If you’d still like to check out the presentation slides or watch the webinar recording, click here.
Also, please don’t hesitate to use the comments field below to post more questions or to add to my answers. I’m very eager to hear what you think about our predictions and to get a dialogue started about major financial services trends for this year.
Without further ado… the answers.
Q1: Why do you equate saving with simplification?
This is a continuation of discussion we had in webinars last summer about how consumers are simplifying their lives. The basic premise is that saving money = buying less stuff = simpler lifestyle. Consumers generally save more during recessions, but in this case, it is part of a more general and longer-term trend that encompasses simplification.
Q2: Please expand on how social marketing provides “highly measurable ROI?”
Social and digital media tracking can provide a tremendous amount of behavioral data that can be used to determine ROI (return on investment). In terms of measurability, social marketing compares favorably to other marketing channels, such as TV or direct mail. For example, online data like click trails can show how well the social media strategy is driving visitors to the company website.
Q3: What was presented as a reasonable alternative to traditional banking during your research?
We often use examples in our survey questions, but in this case we didn’t. We simply wanted to measure the degree of consumer dissatisfaction with banks, not the degree of attraction to specific banking alternatives. However, some alternatives we could have mentioned would be accounts at brokerage or mutual fund firms, or perhaps prepaid cards with online bill pay services.
In a survey Mintel conducted in September of 2009, 5% of respondents said they “would leave my current bank if Walmart offered all the same financial services that my bank does”. In this case, Walmart could be considered a bank alternative.
Q4: Can you further explain Blippy? We do not understand the way it works.
Check out their website at http://blippy.com/. The site is basically a social media site that posts financial transactions so that everyone can see what you are buying. You can either designate a primary credit card or you can share your information at Amazon.com or iTunes for instance. People are calling it the “Twitter of personal finance.” This indicates that the trend of all our behavior being shared online is continuing.
Q5: Isn’t P2P lending a legalized version of loan sharking?
It is if the fee structure is exorbitantly high. However, our data indicates that many consumers don’t pay as much attention to fees as one would think. And the convenience of P2P will probably be a draw for a certain portion of consumers.
Q6: You indicated that 29% of people tend to ignore FS companies on social networking sites. How does this compare to other industries?
That’s a very interesting question, and it will certainly be included in our next round of consumer surveys on the subject of social media. Stay tuned!