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Marketing to A Country In Crisis: How Women Are Feeling About Money Right Now—And What They Want to Hear From Financial Firms

BY Diane Di Costanzo & Dan Rubin

Since mid-March when the pandemic hit in earnest, Meredith has been conducting waves of research on the same set of financial topics. This is to gauge changes in women’s economic concerns, consumer confidence and the ways their finances are affecting their lives and relationships.

And the news isn’t good. Currently 71% of women surveyed[1] report they are “significantly concerned” about the state of the American economy. In fact, the economy is their third biggest worry, after getting sick and people not following social distancing guidelines.

These findings represent both an opportunity and a challenge for marketers in the financial industries. The good news: There’s an opportunity for companies offering financial services to provide much-need help and support. But there’s also the risk of appearing to profit from the pandemic. Here, an overview of relevant Meredith’s Consumer Pulse data, along with examples of how smart and sensitive marketers are responding to consumers’ behaviors and concerns.

1. Meredith Consumer Pulse Finding

47% of women surveyed report that they are creating a will.

Sample activations:
Rocket Lawyer’s mission is to make legal services affordable. In keeping with that pledge, and understanding that their services are more relevant than ever during the crisis, the online provider announced it was waiving fees for its coronavirus-related attorney Q&A feature and making several key features entirely free. Lastly, the company invites users with financial hardship to apply for additional assistance at coronavirushelp@rocketlawyer.com.

2. Meredith Consumer Pulse Finding

56% of women surveyed are changing allocations/contributions to investments and financial holdings.

Sample activations:
Investors have questions and (pardon the pun) stock answers are no longer relevant. Instead, answers need to be nuanced and reflective of COVID-induced economic hardships. As a result, many banks and investment firms are publishing rapid-response content, including Bank of America, in partnership with Foundry 360. For example, this article addresses different ways to think about market volatility depending on your age and stage, whether you are mid-career, nearing retirement or in retirement. For Better Money Habits, Bank of America’s personal-finance content hub, this article advises readers whose finances are impacted by COVID-19.

3. Meredith Consumer Pulse Finding

27% of women surveyed say they have purchased or are likely to buy life insurance

Sample activations:
Insurance advertising tends to be lighthearted, populated by comedic geckos, talking raccoons and the like. With COVID-19, insurers have tempered their messaging, especially life insurance providers. Policygenius has taken that a step further by developing content that corresponds with the soaring search volume around “does life insurance cover coronavirus?” It publishes a guide with a title matching that search—as is an SEO best practice—along with solid and highly detailed answers about whether the uninsured can secure life insurance during a pandemic (the good news: you can!).

Diane di Costanzo is the VP/Editorial Director of Foundry 360
Dan Rubin is the VP/Strategy & Marketing of Foundry 360 and Foundry

Please see below for other articles in our series on Marketing to A Country in Crisis:
1. Marketing to a Country in Crisis: Rethinking Strategies
2. Marketing to a Country in Crisis: Rapid Response
3. Marketing to a Country in Crisis: Above All, Be Useful 
4. Marketing to a Country in Crisis: Getting Content Out The Door From Behind Closed Doors
5. Marketing to a Country in Crisis: What Do Moms Want To Hear From Brands Right Now

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