The financial services industry is always transforming. These companies realize what worked in one generation will not resonate with another generation, like Generation Z. These individuals born in 1997-2012 have driven financial behaviors through the demands of technology.
Gen Zers are also unique within the financial services industry due to growth among the evolution of technology where they want accessible information in a secure, transparent way. According to The Financial Brand, Gen Zers represent approximately 40% of the nation’s consumer purchasing power. Financial service companies need to be strategic on how to improve engagement and reach these consumers.
Reaching Gen Z
The most crucial aspect of reaching Gen Zers is knowing an audience. According to Raddon Research, there are quite a few financial concerns that worry Gen Z:
- 78% worry about the rising cost of living
- 75% worry about college affordability
- 71% worry about having enough money
- 69% worry about climate change and getting a job
- 66% worry about ethnic and racial conflicts
While Gen Z has more concerns about their financial well-being, institutions must know who they are targeting to reach their ideal Gen Z consumer. Additionally, institutions must reevaluate their communication strategies to reach, engage, and convert this generation. According to Evok Advertising, the most prevalent attitudes on money for Gen Z include:
- Being wary of debt, especially student loans
- Earning extra income through side hustles
- Eager to learn about managing finances
Providing support through these attitudes will increase the chance of reaching Gen Zers. For example, providing financial education like our Financial Fitness ACADEMY™ where users can learn about their finances in a personalized fashion.
Engaging Gen Z
Creating long-lasting relationships, trust, and strong customer experiences lead Gen Z back to a financial institution. Gen Z is the future of the financial services industry, so it’s crucial to establish these grounds early on in the consumer experience. These tactics involve the best practices for engaging this demographic:
1. Be honest, transparent, and open about products and services
Gen Z has grown up in some of the most explosive financial periods. According to Salesforce Research, 71% of millennials say they trust companies, versus 63% of Gen Z. Improving this distrust and giving full insight to the services an institution offers creates loyalty.
2. Leverage technology and digital experiences for Gen Z to reach their goals
As discussed, Gen Z is focused on managing their finances and have concerns about having enough money in general. Financial institutions can design their services with built-in saving options, investing within apps, creating a free in-app credit check, and much more.
3. Offer efficiency and quality service
With time and money being of great value to Gen Z, offering solutions that are quick, practical, and easy will be valuable. Gen Z is looking for digital money management and wants the flexibility of having access to a live person. Gen Z cares about the quality of service versus the costs. 80% of Gen Zers will switch brands for a product with better quality.
4. Offer experience-based perks
Gen Zers want to have rewards for their loyalty. Rewards can be done by a point-based system and by providing early access to new products and services.
5. Learn the best way to connect with Gen Z
Raddon Research shares the best ways financial institutions connect with Gen Z are through email (40%), in-store (21%), live chat (17%), as well as phone customer service and social media (10% each).
Gen Z is an increasingly important demographic, especially in the financial services industry. Gen Zers are worth $140 billion in spending, making them the highest spending demographic. When building long-lasting relationships, a unique consumer experience, and trust are a part of financial institutions’ strategies, this demographic will want to engage with their financial institution.