WHAT DOES AN ETCHED FLY HAS TO DO WITH A TOILET BOWL?
We will take a wild guess and assume you landed on this page knowing the theme of the V4 Conference 2017. Well, just in case, here it is: behavioural economics! Oxford dictionaries will tell you that it’s “a method of economic analysis that applies psychological insights into human behaviour to explain economic decision-making”.
Are you still there? Good, let’s continue…
Simply put, behavioural economics is about understanding why consumers behave a certain way. It helps companies predict consumers’ future behaviours once a specific nudge or incentive is applied. Behavioural economics puts the emphasis on the irrationality of behaviours. It suggest that there is no such thing as “neutral” design. Every detail matters to direct consumers towards a particular direction. That’s where our fly comes in.
The story of the fly and the toilet boil is one of the best-known in the field of behavioural economics. It comes straight from the men’s urinals at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. It seems like men are not that good at aiming so the authorities decided to etch the image of a fly right into the urinals. Having a target right in front of them, men travellers went full sniper on it. Results? A 50 to 80% reduction in “spillage” resulting in lower cleaning costs and splashbacks. See; every detail counts.
Based on psychological insights, companies are able to appropriately design a service or product to direct people towards a better, and mutually beneficial, choice. Attitude towards gains and losses, people’s tendency to stick to the current situation, overconfidence, resistance to temptation or the desire to belong are as some examples of such insights.
Behavioural economics & our corporate partners
We have partnered with top-companies from all industries to tackle the subject and bring it to life: Google, L’Oréal, Unibail-Rodamco, Hilti, PwC, Skoda, etc. In order to keep some surprise, here’s a selected few situations where behavioural economics plays a role for our partners. The rest is for you to discover and experience at the V4 Conference!
Google is known to provide great food options for its employees. Aside from regular meals and beverages, Google Toronto offers ice cream to its Googlers. Here is the catch: it is only available on the last and 17th floor, which is the only floor without an elevator access. Google designed its “catering service” in a way that respects its employees’ freedom of choice while nudging them towards a healthier choice, namely the food available on lower floors.
L’Oréal’s NYX Cosmetics benefits from a great community of customers that share the same aspirations and values. The sense of belonging into that community is paramount to L’Oréal when it comes to promoting its brand. NYX Cosmetics must develop and strengthen that community through the right engagement strategies on social media and the right partnerships with specialized bloggers and YouTubers.
Unibail-Rodamco differentiates itself from competitors with its 4-star shopping centres. This label supposes a great understanding of people’s minds. In addition to services such as kindergarten, cloakroom or conciergerie, Unibail-Rodamco carefully designs the flow of people inside and out its shopping centres. Thanks to proper tenant mix, dining and social areas and centre accesses, Unibail-Rodamco manages to increase customer satisfaction and sales.
These few examples give you a hint about the next V4 Conference but behavioural economics is so much more! We cannot wait for you to join us on our journey and welcome you in Prague!
Thaler, R. H., & Sunstein, C. R. (2009). Nudge: Improving decisions about health, wealth and happiness (New international ed.). London: Penguin Books.
Evans-Pritchard, B. (2013). Aiming To Reduce Cleaning Costs. Works that work. Retrieved from https://worksthatwork.com/1/urinal-fly
Behavioural economics. In OxfordDictionaries.com. Retrieved from https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/behavioural_economics