Jun 01 2009

The Mind of Low to Moderate Income Savers-Phase 1 and 2


LMI families are finding it increasingly difficult to save money. In Does Imagery Matter: Delving into the Mind of Low- to Moderate-Income Savers, the Doorways to Dreams Fund (D2D) and the Filene Research Institute partnered to analyze how marketing images influence LMI families’ likelihood of saving.

Researchers used the Zaltman Metaphor Elicitation Technique (ZMET), a groundbreaking research methodology that elicits insights about human decision making through metaphors and storytelling. The results demonstrate a useful tool for marketing professionals to tap into consumers’ subconscious thoughts with compelling messages and metaphors in financial services. Thank you to the National Credit Union Foundation for funding this research as part of its REAL Solutions program

After evaluating these credit unions’ marketing materials and results, the researchers found the following:

  • While risky, choosing more emotionally provocative images could connect more successfully with LMI consumers.
  • ZMET-influenced marketing can be implemented on different scales, from small to substantial.
  • ZMET-based imagery and messaging may be most effective when targeted at specific segments within the LMI market (e.g., single moms).
  • Credit unions should consider the value of community outreach as a complement to new marketing images and messages.

Interested in applying these techniques at your credit union? Learn more about Filene’s new Applied Research Advisory Services.

Report Number 185