Case Detail

Case Summary

Aliada: An Online Platform Matching Maids with Customers in Mexico

Case Number: 5-217-250, Year Published: 2017

HBS Number: KE1034

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Authors: Angela Y. Lee; Vasilia Kilibarda Funston

Key Concepts

Advertising, Entrepreneurship, Marketing Communications, Motivation, Service Strategy


This case puts students in the shoes of Mexican entrepreneur Rodolfo Corcuera of the tech startup Aliada, an online platform that matches maids with customers in Mexico City. With backing from one of Mexico City's newest venture capital firms, Corcuera's business now needs to scale, and he is considering how best to position his offering to those on whom his business model depends--maids and customers. To tackle this, students will learn about basic concepts from psychology that can inform marketers. More specifically, they will learn how basic human needs (nurturance, security) fuel self-regulatory goals (promotion and prevention goals, respectively), which in turn impact how people approach their consumption goals. Students will analyze Aliada's current Facebook ads, watch videos of some of Aliada's current maids and customers to assess whether they seem more motivated by promotion or prevention goals, and recommend optimal messaging for Facebook ads and subway banners in order for Corcuera to be most appealing to these two target audiences who may have different motivations.

Learning Objectives

After reading and analyzing the case, students will be able to begin to understand the psychological drivers that underlie people's decision-making processes; and practice using the psychological framework of regulatory focus theory (Higgins 1997) that distinguishes between promotion and prevention orientations to recommend how a business might position and promote its service most effectively to target audiences.

Number of Pages: 13

Extended Case Information

Teaching Areas: Marketing

Teaching Note Available: Yes

Geographic: Mexico

Industry: Domestic service

Organization Name: Aliada

Decision Maker Position: Founder

Decision Maker Gender: Male

Year of Case: 2016