Marketing Strategy

Monuta: in-depth qualitative research into customer motivations

In order to continue to develop and offer products that meet the needs of (potential) customers, Monuta wanted insight into the considerations people make when taking out funeral insurance. Monuta can use the insights from this in-depth research as input for their future product development.


In the case of Monuta, a qualitative in-depth study addresses questions such as:

  • Why do people actually take out funeral insurance or not?
  • What values underlie this?
  • And what does this mean for filling insurance needs?


Qualitative research: in-depth interviews

Qualitative research through individual interviews is the best way to find out how people view funeral insurance. This way you have 100% attention to the individual, and that is especially necessary with a personal topic like funeral insurance. It allows the respondent to tell their own story in detail and get their own needs and motivations in order.

Arranging a funeral is something personal and not a topic that people think about every day. Therefore, during in-depth interviews lasting an hour and a half, we went looking for underlying needs and motivations around taking out funeral insurance. This gives Monuta insights into:

  • reasons why people do or do not purchase funeral insurance (needs);
  • appropriateness of existing forms of insurance to these needs;
  • prerequisites that an ideal funeral insurance policy should meet (what should it offer and why) and what need should it fill.


Means-goal-chain model through 'Laddering'

In the interviews for Monuta, we took the so-called "means-goal-chain model" (also called meaning structure analysis (BSA)) as a starting point.

Products and services can have different meanings for consumers.

Means-goal chains can be used to establish a link between the characteristics of products and services (means) on the one hand and the demands, wants and needs of consumers (goal) on the other. In means-goal chains, three phases are distinguished that are hierarchically ordered and linked: characteristics à consequences à values or goals.
By looking for these phases in interviews with the target group, a higher level of abstraction is reached step by step and thus the relationship between functional characteristics (of products, services or a domain) and the more abstract desires and needs of the consumer is identified.

From the conversations, various chains are mapped out, thus creating a so-called valuemap, in which all the means-goal chains relevant to the domain become apparent. This creates different meaning structures for, in this case, the needs around taking out funeral insurance.


Conversation flow in-depth interviews

Prior to the interview, participants were given a homework assignment to get them thinking about the topic beforehand. This helps, during the interview itself, to go into depth more quickly. In this case, the homework assignment consisted of collecting a number of photos or images that, according to the interviewees, represent what they should think about when it comes to funeral insurance.

By using the laddering method and always asking the why question, you will find out the universal end values. In total, there are 18 universal end values based on research by BSA's developers, Reynolds and Gutman. Such as: freedom - independence, free choice and wisdom - mature understanding of life.

In this way, Monuta discovered what are the deeper needs it needs to meet.

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Frederieke van Leeuwen
Frederieke van Leeuwen