When most advisors think about today’s millennials, they think about seventeen-year-olds taking selfies and posting on Snapchat.
The reality is, most millennials are now in their early 30s and stand to inherit trillions of dollars over the next two decades from their parents and grandparents. While they may still be taking selfies and posting on Snapchat, they are double the size of the baby boomer generation, incredibly tech savvy, entrepreneurial and in-tune with their finances.
If you are truly building a sustainable business, then yes, you must build a multi gen-team and durable operational infrastructure (see: our other blogs!) but you must also ensure that your brand narrative can transcend generations. Most advisor business owners have over looked this last piece.
Here are some of the things millennials care about: Sustainability, transparency, leaving the world a better place than when they found it, price, ease of doing business, authenticity, and creating fulfilling experiences for themselves and loved ones.
Here are some things millennials don’t care about: The fact that a business has been around for 150 years.
This is a generation that will choose the no-name-brand-product over the much more popular and traditional brand, if the former adheres to ESG principles or has better pricing for similar quality. This is a generation that vets products and services, not based on the rhetoric of a single company, but based on the reviews and opinions of the general public (i.e. other consumers.)
How do you ensure that your brand will connect to the next generation?
1) Craft a story that incorporates what the next gen cares about. Speak directly to them in person and via all print, digital and social channels. Talk about how transparent your firm is, the impact-investing capabilities you have, and the fact that you want to help them plan for tomorrow, but also live for today.
2) Allow the personas of team members to develop. Make sure you are strategically connecting members of your team with your clients. Consider segmenting clients not by just assets or revenue, but by interests and commonalities; assign team members with similarities ownership over a segment.
3) Create authentic content. The only way to truly stand out in a world of ghost written articles and generic content, is to develop a bold, genuine perspective on whatever it is you’re writing about. Use your words and any medium you have (LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram) to allow people to get to know YOU, your business, and your perspective on wealth management.
So, what’s your powerful next step? Engage the children of your clients (or your clients) in an honest discussion about your website, social pages, and marketing material. Ask for feedback on how you might be able to better connect to a different – but very important – sub group of clients.