Given vaccination rates and increasing consumer confidence, financial services brands must prepare now to address economic recovery and a transformed market once the pandemic is over.
COVID has highlighted and exacerbated the many economic inequalities that exist in our society. While some segments of the population faced job losses, depleted savings and overall extreme financial hardship, others prospered through increased savings, capital gains and debt reduction during the past year.
This unequal experience of the pandemic has shaped these two divergent groups’ perceptions on what “post-pandemic” means. Financial services providers will need to balance serving these two very different groups during what many economists are calling a “K-shaped recovery” when developing communications, creating new products and serving customers.
Behavioral Science principles, however, reveal that we may be able to peer into the future through one’s current vaccination status. From a psychological standpoint, getting vaccinated (or being scheduled to get vaccinated) is a “temporal milestone” much like a birthday or New Year’s Day, marking a fresh start. In this case, getting vaccinated indicates that the pandemic is effectively over.
With a national rollout, a subset of the population is currently vaccinated. For this group, they are already in a “post pandemic” mindset. Conversely with the remaining population still waiting for their opportunity to receive the vaccine, this group is still currently living as we have been since March 2020—in a “during pandemic” mindset.
We are therefore, in a unique moment in time where research can reveal significant differences between the two groups and provide strategic business guidance on where to focus on post pandemic strategic efforts.
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