Why are we applauding our financial services clients?
The financial services that many organisations provide to their customers are complex. These services can be difficult to understand and even harder to explain. Some organisations have recognised this complexity, and have done all they can to ensure that their customers knew what they were buying. The regulations required them to offer a PDS or Prospectus, but they went over and above what was specifically asked for. They tested their documentation with customers. (This is called 'consumer testing'). Those of our clients who did this - we applaud you!
Don't test written content in focus groups
It has never been so important for brands to write clearly and effectively to their customers, yet the techniques most research agencies use to test written communications have not kept up with the times.
Many clients still use focus groups, because that is how they have always tested advertising.
I love focus groups, but here are three reasons why we need to test written communications such as brochures, websites and correspondence individually, not in groups.
One of the things we like to do most is to help organisations communicate clearly. So we do a lot of testing of organisational communications of various kinds such as disclosure documents, fact sheets, labels and the like. We always advise our clients that 'understanding' involves more than just understanding the words. This paper on nutrition claims supports our view. Based on our insights and supported by the evidence in the study described in the paper, here are three tips for testing labels, fact sheets and claims.