How might a financial institution help guide Latino families to secure their financial future?

We helped Thrivent design a new business to empower Latino families to confidently secure their financial future.

Thrivent Financial, a not-for-profit financial services organization, sought to extend its promise beyond its core customers into the fast-growing and underserved Latino market. Thrivent recognized in order for a new offering orientated around financial wellness to become relevant and create value, it would require more than English-to-Spanish translations. Thrivent engaged Doblin to understand the needs and behaviors of families in this potential market through a balance of quantitative and qualitative research.

Our team conducted ethnographic in-person interviews, co-creation sessions, role playing exercises, value proposition testing, journey mapping, and interactive prototyping to learn about Latino consumers and gauge response to potential solutions. By leveraging human-centered design and rapid prototyping methods, we uncovered insights critical to the creation of the new business:

  1. Lack of trust in financial institutions. Distrust is shaped by family stories that recount scams, banks that refuse to pay out, and family members who have lost everything.
  2. Collaborative decision-making. Information is shared and discussed, often between members of the family who are less comfortable with English and financial topics.
  3. A focus on the now. A happy family is worth every penny, so disposable income is often spent on loved ones, rather than tucked away for the unexpected.
  4. Traditional salespeople are met with skepticism. Salespeople often use unfamiliar financial terms and approach people as an expert, rather than a peer who can share relevant wisdom in a familiar way.

Equipped with insights, we began designing and iteratively testing a solution that would better serve the needs and motivations of Latino consumers. Doblin assisted in bringing this new business offering to market through an ‘out-of-lab’ pilot; in doing so, we deployed and refined key components of the experience in sequence to continue validating our ‘in-lab’ findings. Through this approach of co-creating and testing concepts, we developed a solution with five distinct elements to address the unmet needs of this community:

· An innovative distribution model that disrupts the role of a traditional financial representative to create more genuine and personal connections that lead with empathy

· A physical presence to build trust and be a community-gathering hub focused on learning

· More scalable learning moments to provide financial guidance to individuals and groups

· A bilingual digital tool that helps families identify gaps in their safety net and explore potential products and learning opportunities

· A new, culturally-relevant brand called: Buen Camino, meaning “Good Path”

Our work together helped launch Buen Camino by Thrivent as a holistic service designed to support Latino families in progressing along their journey to secure their financial future. The result is a solution that stretches beyond a solely digital platform, creating new roles and physical community spaces that encourage in-person interaction. The service has helped build authentic connections with the local community, combining approachable learning moments with tools and products to help families guide their finances to the right path for a more generous future.