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Previously known as "Financial Awakening"

Photo of Marco Yin

Written by

To learn how the initial ideas were developed, check previous posts:

Image title


  • Elevator Pitch
  • The Problem
    • Spenders
    • Savers
  • Our Solution
    • A Customer Journey
    • Key Offerings
    • Potential Brand Extensions
  • Test and Feedback
    • Test Design
    • Feedbacks
  • Values to CO-OP Financial Services and Credit Unions
  • Market Size
  • Business Model
  • Competition
  • Money and Milestones

ELEVATOR PITCH urges and facilitates people aged 40-60 to reimagine their retirement lives, and guides them to overcome financial obstacles to pursue dreams.


The problem is more comprehensively analyzed in Phase I: Research and Phase II: Ideas. Here's the short version below.


Spenders see money as a way to express love, the power to fulfill dreams and impact others.

  • Spenders are often shocked when they realized retirement costs so much money, and regret they didn’t save enough.
  • Spenders often say they will do this or do that after retirement, but the financial feasibility is rarely considered. There are many “invisible” expenses in retirement, they ignore/underestimate potential threats.


Savers see money as security. They feel better when money saved, even it’s unnecessary.

  • Savers denys themselves too much and often tight their budget way too narrow. They often find retirement is boring and feel depressed.



Note: We showed the video to some friends, and realized that it's hard to fully understand the solution by reading the text on the video. Therefore, we are going to add commentary voiceover in the near future (not done yet). If there is any difficulty right now, please just pause, fast forward/backward. :D


Note: Some feedbacks informed us that our previous solution briefing somehow misled people to believe that the solution is a brochure. Actually, the solution is a system which creates and delivers value to users through different deliverables: brochure, website, mobile apps, SNS feeds, in-person services.

The main brand "RetirementMadeEasy" is divided into four core sub-brands:

Key Offerings
Note: You may already noticed that the sub-brands are formatted into "re(verb)". The prefix "re-" creates a temperament of freshness, it passes the message of "retirement = renew, restart, etc". The parenthesized verb indicates what the offering does in an explicit and strong way, like a call-to-action. The format empowers the brand more extensible.


Brochure, Website, Mobile Apps, SNS Feeds
List senior-friendly jobs, and match right people with right posts based on learnings from re(IMAGINE)

Website, Mobile Apps, In-person Services
Train people to get ready for highly demanded positions listed on re(GAIN)

Website, Mobile Apps
Help people to track their spending



The website and mobile application serve major roles in the proposed solution, but we design a face-to-face activity with target audience in eight steps. The activity is designed to validate the utility of the solution, which is considered as a prerequisite of the usability of our technology offerings.


  1. Introduce the test and build rapport
  2. Ask people to estimate their retirement cost
  3. Tell a story of others and articulate how much it costs
  4. Guide people to create their profiles and rank their passions
  5. Inspire people to imagine exciting scenarios by shopping predefined scenarios under the passions they ranked at Step 4
  6. Complement scenarios with heuristics
    • important people who need your financial support
    • a day in retirement
    • things happen monthly
    • things happen yearly
    • last 10 years of your life
  7. Show the cost based on the picked scenarios
  8. Propose solutions
Test Design



Things one likes or finds notable:

  • Storytelling motivates people effectively. They want to design a better and happy retirement life after heard the story.
  • Story impacts people stronger when it has higher similarity to the user’s behavior pattern. (People try to assess the similarity all the time while listening)
  • The “last 10 years” in the story works best.
  • It delights people when shopping scenarios. They felt mindset change towards a more positive lifestyle.
  • Some people identified potential business opportunities in the scenario shopping process.
  • The conversation in the cost estimation process is fun.
  • People feel shocked after cost estimation came out.
  • People are strongly motivated to take actions after being advised.
  • People would like to recommend retirement planning to others.

Constructive criticism:

  • Picking passions (Step 4) misleads people to believe that Step 5 is also picking their interests.
  • The Priority Classification confuses people, it could be replaced by Probability:
    • It will happen for sure.
    • I hope it would happen.
    • I can’t tell right now.
    • It won’t happen.
  • It’s unnecessary to split cost to family members. Allocating the projected cost to whole family is less confusing.
  • It’s better if the suggestions include real business/job opportunities.

Ideas that the test spurred:

  • Some scenarios (children) are dependent to another one (parent), bypass children scenarios if parent is marked as “It won’t happen”.
  • How long is the life cycle of a scenario? 25, 30 or 40 years? A suggestion based on the average age projection (revealed by public data) can be used to help people to answer the question.
  • Add “business/job opportunities” to scenarios which can potentially make money (such as “making bonsai” -> design and sell bonsais).

Questions that the test raised:

  • The scenario shopping phase (Step 5) sparks people to generate their own ideas. How to records them? How to make the brain heat keeps flowing instead of dragging back to the list? How to make sure the originated ideas are not duplicated to the predefined ones?
  • If a scenario is an investment activity (such as “run a flower shop”), how can we project the cost? Will the potential income be calculated in the number?
  • How can we make the process enjoyable when people interact with computer solely?


Business Values


Note: To be done.


Note: To be done.


Note: To be done. This part will list products/services angled the same problem, and will explain why and how our solution will make difference.


Note: To be done. This part will propose the milestones in different sized budgets (small, medium and large).


  • 殷悦 Marco YIN (Co-founder @ GuruJam)
  • 李文虎 LI Wenhu (Co-founder @ GuruJam)
  • 万维柏 Will WAN (Product Manager @
  • 王丽莎 Lisa WANG (Service Design & Delivery Manager @ NationSky)
  • 王磊 Aaron WANG (Product Manager @ NationSky)
  • 陈蔚虎 David CHEN (Product Manager @

Please check all that apply:

  • I'm not currently involved in a credit union, but am curious to learn more!

This idea emerged from

  • A group brainstorm
  • A Design Jam


Join the conversation:

Photo of Marco Yin

What’s New?

- Update the feedback report

Kate Rushton Joanna Spoth Shane Zhao 

Photo of Marco Yin

What’s New?

- Add “Values to CO-OP Financial Services and Credit Unions”

Photo of Marco Yin

What's New?

- New test design

Kate Rushton Joanna Spoth Shane Zhao 

Photo of Kate Rushton

Thank you Marco! I am just looking at it now. It is great to all the progress that has been made.

Photo of Marco Yin

What's New?

- Move the past posts to Google Docs to keep a history of the project development
- Create a new post structure to shift the focus from the process sharing to solution presenting
- Draft the value proposition (elevator pitch)
- Brand the solution
- Create a brand structure (sub-brands) to make the offerings more obvious- Show the new test design (unfinished)

Kate Rushton Joanna Spoth Shane Zhao 

Photo of Joanna Spoth

Awesome updates, Marco. Keep up your great work this week!

Photo of Kate Rushton

Great to see the updates, Marco!

Photo of carlos errando vidal

This is an interesting idea. I like how it cycles forward. That feels optimistic to me.
I am wondering if ithis might be a Dream Debit Card issued by the Credit Union. My thinking on this is that not all folk in this demographic may be eligible for more credit. (Also credit ratings can be effected - not sure exactly how this works..) In addition with a debit card there is no risk of interest charges or late fees. (I guess overdraft fees might apply. Maybe it can be set up so that this is not permitted?)

How to monitor whether the card is used for dreams? Can there be a function where a receipt must be presented, maybe take a photo which can integrate via an app? I guess there might need to be guidlines as to what happens if the card is used inappropriately.

I can see the list including things that might be for family such as seeing a child graduate from college. In that case there might be several types of expenses involved that one might contribute to.. Would that be an option with this idea?

Photo of Marco Yin

Hi Carlos,

Thanks for your comment! I didn't include any debit card in the solution before, but it's an interesting idea to consider!

> How to monitor whether the card is used for dreams? Can there be a function where a receipt must be presented, maybe take a photo which can integrate via an app? I guess there might need to be guidlines as to what happens if the card is used inappropriately.

I think the solution is about inspiring and facilitating people to re-imagine their retirement lives, and then helping them to overcome potential financial challenges. If people make their dreams come true by following the suggestions provided by our application/in-person services, then they highly likely already consumed some financial products (such as loans, mortgage, structured products, investment products, P2P lending) from CO-OP Financial Services. We hope our users to perform real and meaningful financial activities and finally gain their own financial robustness, not just earn game points and redeem some awards. If the user's problem got solved, the win-win deal between the user and the CO-OPs are already achieved. Then, presenting a receipt or other ways to monitor the user's activity will no longer be important.

> I can see the list including things that might be for family such as seeing a child graduate from college. In that case there might be several types of expenses involved that one might contribute to.. Would that be an option with this idea?

Yes, the solution is scenario-based. We don't actually ask the user to classify a scenario into traditional personal finance categories (housing, food, clothing, personal care, automobile, etc). In contrast, we ask users if a scenario is in your daily/monthly/yearly routine or just non-routine/one-time thing. In the case you mentioned, this scenario should be "non-routine/one-time thing". By the way, to offer the flexibility, we also provide the tagging features for those who want to use the traditional categories.

Did I get your questions right? If anything I said is unclear, please kindly let me know. : )

Warm regards,

Photo of Kate Rushton

Hi Marco!

I hope you had a good start to the year.

Have you thought about getting feedback on your idea? A good example is from the beneficiary feedback video - - for the Markit Opportunity idea in a past challenge -

A good example of user feedback testing is from a finalist from our previous challenge on food waste - Cobuy - Group buying software that helps people buy good food at good prices, together. This is a link to the idea - and a link to the feedback from users -

Photo of Marco Yin

Hey Kate, likewise, happy new year to you!

Thank you for sharing. We're working on the refinement actively, and will follow the leads you provided. : )

Photo of OpenIDEO

Welcome to the Refinement phase Marco! We've added new Refinement questions to your original submission that we'd love for you to answer. Please check out the Refinement Phase Toolkit for instructions on how to answer the new questions and other recommendations we encourage all idea teams to consider in the upcoming weeks.

Refinement Phase Toolkit:

Lastly, here's a useful tip: When you update the content of your post, it'd be helpful to indicate this in your idea title by adding an extension. For example, you can add the extension " - Update: Experience Maps 12/21" to you idea title. This will be a good way to keep people informed about how your idea is progressing!

Photo of Kate Rushton

Hi Marco!

I look forward to seeing how this idea develops in the refinement phase.

Photo of Kate Rushton

Hi Marco!

Thank you for coming back to the ideas phase and sharing your idea and the excellent graphics, user experience and thought process behind it. 

Have you seen these other ideas in the ideas phase?
Leverage the trust people have in credit unions to create personal pensions. by Wingee Sin Gamifying Saving - UPDATED by Crystal A mind map for financial planning by Nikhil Gangaraju 
There might be potential for collaboration / shared learning. 

Photo of Kate Rushton

I like the use of storytelling in the brochure to reach the customers. Could you reach out to customers in other ways?

Photo of Marco Yin

Yes, it could be social media, customer referrals, and any other ways could "carry" stories.