To eat, or to wait for more

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - MEDIA& MARKETING -

SOUTH Africans are no­to­ri­ously bad savers with up to 75 per­cent of our dis­pos­able in­come used to ser­vice debt.

For National Sav­ings Month in July, The Jupiter Draw­ing Room (Jhb) worked along­side client Absa Bank to bring a well-known study from the 1960s to life.

Sav­ing is hard. We all know that and we also all know that we should do more of it. The chal­lenge for the team at Jupiter (Jhb) was to en­cour­age Absa clients to save by demon­strat­ing the im­por­tance of sav­ing …but not with the same te­dious mes­sage.

The Stan­ford Marsh­mal­low Test was a se­ries of stud­ies on de­layed grat­i­fi­ca­tion that took place in the late 1960s and early 1970s at Stan­ford Univer­sity. In th­ese stud­ies, a child was of­fered a choice be­tween one small re­ward, pro­vided im­me­di­ately, or two small re­wards if he or she waited un­til the ex­per­i­menter re­turned (af­ter about 15 min­utes).

In fol­low- up stud­ies, the re­searchers found that chil­dren who were able to wait longer for the pre- ferred re­wards tended to have bet­ter life out­comes, as mea­sured by SAT scores, ed­u­ca­tional at­tain­ment, body mass in­dex and other life mea­sures.

Dar­ren Kil­foil, se­nior copy­writer at Jupiter (Jhb), says the team used this in­sight as the ba­sis for re-cre­at­ing the tests: “We ini­tially cast over 200 chil­dren, and work­ing with a top child psy­chol­o­gist, put them through a se­ries of tests to de­ter­mine who would give us the best per­for­mances.

“From there, we filmed 35 chil­dren to even­tu­ally get to our three stars: Misha, Naledi and Ti­mothy.”

The chil­dren were led into a room one at a time and given a marsh­mal­low. They were then given the choice of ei­ther eat­ing it or sav­ing it un­til later and re­ceiv­ing an­other.

Jupiter (Jhb) ECD Tom Cul­li­nan says: “It turned out to be a test of iron will, and in our minds, the ba­sis for a se­ries of ad­verts with a pow­er­ful mes­sage. The take­out was sim­ple: Sav­ing can be hard, but the re­wards are worth the wait.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.