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Aaron Forth - "Engaging Consumers in Finance: the Mint.com Example"

Can tracking finances, managing budgets and saving money be fun? Mint.com figured out a way to not only build an easy-to-use personal finance website, but to attract more than 6 million users since launching in 2007 – 90 percent whom say they have changed their financial habits as a result of using the service. In this session, Aaron Forth (VP and GM of Intuit Personal Finance) will share how Mint.com has made personal finance fun and engaging through design and gamification, and how other companies can learn from the Mint.com model.

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Aaron Forth - "Engaging Consumers in Finance: the Mint.com Example"

  1. 1.
  2. 2. American’s don’t score well on financial capability…<br />Making <br />Ends <br />Meet<br />Almost half of Americans reported having trouble keeping up with monthly expenses and bills.<br />Only 49% have set aside emergency or rainy day funds that would cover expenses for 3 months.<br />Planning <br />Ahead<br />68% of Americans have credit cards, 25% have more than 4. The average credit card debt is $15,799 / household @ ~15% APR. <br />US credit card 30 day delinquency = 3.3%.<br />Choosing <br />Financial <br />Products<br />America’s Financial Capability, National Bureau of Economic Research, June 2011<br />
  3. 3. ‘Life mechanics’ are a big part of why we are not financially healthy.<br />apathy<br />inertia<br />Too hard to keep track<br />financial illiteracy<br />More responsibility on individuals<br />Complexity is intimidating<br />Hard to get good financial advice<br />
  4. 4. Can gamifying money management help?<br />
  5. 5. First, what are game mechanics anyway?<br />(Deck courtesy of Seth Priebatsch @ SCVNGR, via Techcrunch 8/2010) <br />
  6. 6. The game mechanics that have been applied to personal finances are not designed to help!<br /><ul><li>Sign up rewards
  7. 7. Loyalty programs
  8. 8. Low introductory APR
  9. 9. Balance Transfer Rates</li></ul>20.5 Billion in fees<br />(Source: New York Times, September 2009)<br />
  10. 10. Mint’s primary job is to get you organized<br />Answer: Setup in 5 minutes or less<br /><ul><li>All accounts in one place
  11. 11. Automatically categorizes
  12. 12. Makes insightful observations</li></ul>Problem: Personal Finance = Work<br /><ul><li>Most want to be organized, few have time
  13. 13. Complexity is intimidating
  14. 14. Trial is event driven
  15. 15. Impossible to set up</li></ul>Achievement<br />7<br />
  16. 16. Definition: <br />A virtual or physical representation of having accomplished something. These are often viewed as rewards in and of themselves.<br />Achievement<br />8<br />
  17. 17.
  18. 18. Definition: <br />a dynamic in which success is granularly displayed and measured through the process of completing itemized tasks.<br />Progressive dynamics<br />10<br />
  19. 19. Which of these alerts drives more of a response?<br />Vs.<br />Why is comparison effective at changing behavior?<br />Nobody wants to be an outlier<br />Comparing to ‘other like you’ is hyper relevant without being creepy<br />Advice is data driven in a space where visibility is difficult<br />11<br />
  20. 20. Definition:<br />The theory defining how behavior can shift greatly based on changed expectations [or new insights].<br />Behavioral Contrast<br />12<br />Game Mechanic #9: Behavior contrast<br />
  21. 21. Drop Your Debt challenge<br />The Idea:<br />“American consumers have $2.42 trillion in debt and Mint.com would like to help change that”<br /><ul><li>Create something that encourages and rewards people for being fiscally responsible
  22. 22. Make it easy for people to connect and share money-savings tips</li></li></ul><li>Definition: <br />The game dynamic wherein the entire community is rallied to work together to solve a riddle, a problem or a challenge. <br />Communal Discovery<br />14<br />
  23. 23. Good design drives engagement.<br />
  24. 24. Could Mint be more like a game?<br />
  25. 25. Our first stab at gamifying Mintlaunched in 2009<br />Based on good financial principles:<br /><ul><li>Spend less than you earn
  26. 26. Make your money work for you
  27. 27. Use debt wisely
  28. 28. Be prepared for the unexpected </li></ul>How you win:<br /><ul><li>Earn points for accomplishing specific tasks
  29. 29. Earn trophies for consecutive success</li></ul>Modeled from popular gaming platforms<br />Status: offline for the moment.<br />
  30. 30. Things you can hopefully use…<br />Game mechanics drive engagement, even in personal finance<br />Well designed ‘games’ can change behavior and inspire action <br />

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