ToolBox Articles



A Fresh Behavior Inducing Solution: Tiered Match Savings (As reported on CFED.org Blog)


Updated 2:18 p.m. EDT, Tue July 18, 2011
By Jason Zavala, President

Inciting and incenting behavior: the IDA saver
Imagine yourself as an IDA practitioner. Now consider what makes an IDA program participant respond, engage or consume differently than other typical students… Do we (in)advertently cajole or coerce their savings behaviors? How are these savers impacted if they give you the “wrong answers” or pursue undesirable directions? Are IDA participants seeking a certain level of social significance and belonging? Do they seek to please?

With these types of motivations in mind, how can we maximize Match Savings Accounts outcomes?

IDA savers may be better teachers of actions than we are. Their behavior – as it relates to their matched savings account – suggests that there are a few easy wins that can be tied to our behavioral messaging. Once we understand more about the target IDA audience (which has changed over time), the answer lies in redefining the match methodology by integrating behavioral triggers.

Formulaically, we know (generally) that IDA savers can represent each and all of the following:


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MitiGate, Inc. helps housing organizations see their way to new product messaging


Updated 12:18 p.m. EDT, Tue March 17, 2009
By Jason Zavala, President

It is time for business, efficiencies, and numbers or to close the doors. It is time to sell the new you. Even if the principles of your product(s) are the same, the messaging has been, shall we say “soooooo 80’s”. And no, community based organizations don’t need grants, they need fee structures.

For years I have listened to the legitimate concern for the presence of the used car salesmen of the housing industry. These entities are the undesirable real estate professionals, brokers, home builders, etc.; not the whole of this group, just the few that are destabilizing communities. Our response is to regulate them more, differently, or omit them from the marketplace. Newsflash – the way to success is to move your own cheese first. BE a better product and you won’t worry what the bad guys are doing.

To the point: for discussion at your next marketing and sales meeting – (if you do not have one of those meetings, create one). Here are some ideas (only free time ever) to reboot your company image:

Six quick areas to improve:

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Seriously - Put your credit cards on a diet


by Jason Zavala/Lori Hall - MitiGate, Inc. 11/06

Holiday shopping is inevitable.Sometime after the New Year rolls over, you may feel this enormous weight in your pocket. It’s probably not the turkey stuffing or the pies, but the abuse that you put your credit cards through to perform the ritual year-end shopping splurge. Why? Because we all feel a need to buy more PEZ dispensers, tiki torches, bobble-heads, and picture frames.

This year, try a new move “early reverse-sweating” [or ‘sit down and have one of those “interventions” with yourself and your credit cards’]. Don’t over-exercise your card this year; exercise good judgment instead. Because like every other year, we will be expected to buy more stuff than any of us really need while increasing our consumer spending and debt. Well, no thanks…..not me.

I say… take these simple steps and you will be in the driver’s seat by the time that you down that first glass of cider on New Year’s Eve.

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Article Citations



CNN Money.Com 12/2007

Southern New Hampshire Adjunct Faculty Listing

NeighborWorks America Faculty Awards

NeighborWorks America Winning Strategies

Financial Services of the House of Representatives

Financial Services of the House of Representatives2

Vermont News Article

New Hampshire News Article

Rhode Island News Article

Texas News Article





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