Why Understanding the ‘Consumer’s Vision’ Is Now Critical to Financial Services

Why Understanding the ‘Consumer’s Vision’ Is Now Critical to Financial Services

This is a guest contribution to Finance TnT by Renato Pelissaro, marketing director at PayPal Latin America. The views expressed are those of the author and not of Finance TnT.

Let’s not fool ourselves: Without a doubt, the future is based on people and it’s focal point will be clients. Taking into account that consumers have more access to information, the growth of social networks, and the fact that interest groups are formed much more quickly than in the past, the truth is that the psychological profile of the “target public” has changed considerably in recent years.

According to psychoanalysis, people act on impulses derived from the natural energy that activates the behavior of each one of us. It has nothing to do with instinct. It’s all about the most basic psychological elements in each person that constitute the origin of his or her behavior. That’s where the company can capture the shades of these elements to extract the so-called “consumer’s vision.”

Consumer’s vision is what allows a company to understand the deepest needs of the public and, in particular, find a way to create an action plan to connect its product or value proposition to the consumer in the most efficient way. Currently, people in marketing — more than managing markets — are concentrated on the importance of identifying, drawing up maps, interpreting, monitoring, and getting on top of the new cultural and behavior codes that govern our lives.

These new ways to understand how the public thinks, feels, acts, and organizes itself have generated theoretical and methodological challenges. The bottom line is this: How can you follow and understand the complexity of human thought?

If you want to achieve that, you should stick to the following four basic principles:

1. To start, gather up all the information possible about what people are thinking and doing. This is where you need to invest in big data, in services that map social networks to get relevant information about behavior that will be useful for your business. This is not simply a great big heap of numbers, although these may also be important. The consumer’s vision is the result arrived at after analyzing the available statistics.

2. With this data, you have to try to understand why your clients (or the target public of your product/service) think and act the way they do. Imagine what it is that guides these clients, what their personal, social, and professional aspirations are and what aspects of daily life they may defend or criticize.

3. The third point is to identify the impulses of this public and select the one that represents the greatest potential for your brand. (It may also make sense to select the one that the competition is not leveraging or the one that is most similar to your company’s DNA.)

4. Finally, develop with your marketing team the consumer’s vision (even better, the consumer’s visions — in plural) of your business. Describe the impulses perceived in the deepest and most precise way possible, identifying their origin and consequence in the functional and emotional behaviors of your target public.

It sounds easy to say so, but don’t fool yourself. An improper perception of the consumer’s vision not only limits the options for your market but also brings down its potential to capture new clients.

The motor behind a genuine consumer’s vision is based on making your product or service into a natural complement of the consumer’s needs, something important and close to the truths that they stand for. This type of marketing is the treasure at the end of the rainbow.

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