A Millennial weighing in on how to market to Millennials.
How can Financial Advisors better court Millennials? Below are three strategies Financial Advisors can use to reach this non-traditional generation:
1. Change your preconceived notions
Marketing to millennials in the financial services industry has been a hot topic this past year. Millennials are often written off as lazy, irresponsible and a technology-obsessed generation who aren’t saving their money. A quick search of ‘’Millennials’’ and ‘’retirement’’ shoots off results of how “millennials may never retire’’ or, ‘’millennials are too busy paying off debts to save”. When we think about Millennials, many people have the mindset ‘’when they grow up,’’ but what they miss is that it already happened for a lot of this generation.
In actuality, Millennials are saving more than almost every other age group. According to CNBC, millennials appear to be more sensible with their financial planning than baby boomers and Generation X. According to Wells Fargo, the majority of Millennials (53%) think about their financial future daily. Research conducted by CIBC states that 77% of 25-34 year-olds have started saving for retirement (60% of those 18-24 have as well). Lastly, according to a study by online brokerage TD Ameritrade, Baby Boomers started saving for retirement at age 35. Generation X started at 28. Meanwhile, Generation Y, born in the 1980s and 1990s, began at an average age of 24.
The saving habits of Millennials are actually much better than the perception. It is important for Financial Advisors to change their mindset and recognize that Millennials can be a great-long-term client. This is a first step in reaching this demographic and gaining their trust. In today’s world, there is a lot more onus on individuals to plan their finances sooner, rather than later, and that’s where Advisors come in to help maximize Millennials savings.
2. Adapt how you communicate
This generation has adopted digital like no other. Millennials are always connected. What are things that Millennials don’t respond to? Voicemails. Letters. Telemarketing calls. Spam texts. In order to more effectively court Millennials, Advisors need to adapt their communication style. Ask your prospect how they would like to be communicated with rather then choosing your preferred method of communication. They are more likely to be engaged if it is a communication channel they use on a daily basis.
On that note, pushy sales people and Millennials are like oil and water. Give Millennials something authentic and useful. Make sure it’s a conversation, and not a pitch. If what you can provide can better Millennials’ lives, or solve a real problem that they have, they will most likely get on board with it.
3. Adapt what you communicate
A large number of millennials have never known a world without the Internet and social media. They aren’t a group that will simply accept your message at face value and take the action you request. Millennials focus on solving real life problems through online research – both in search engines and social media. Financial Advisors need to be relevant and provide solutions online to Millennials’ financial challenges. What really gets Millennials attention is a well-written blog post that speaks directly to them and the challenges that they are facing. Millennials appreciate businesses that make useful information easy to find, answering their questions and doing their homework for them.
Millennials may not be as concerned with retirement right now, so rather then focusing on this subject, focus on goals that Millennials might actually want to save for like travelling, technology or buying a house. Advisors should take the time to understand how they can solve Millennials problems based on what this generation values and from there they will be better equipped to create value to the Millennial, instead of noise.
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