Financial services branding for Gen Y and Gen Z

Tuesday, 24 August 2010 19:57

While they tend to be a very switched on lot, Gen-Y have plenty of financial woes. They tend to classify their financial situation as "bad", aren't in the practice of using a budget, have difficulty managing their spending, and expect to have accumulated some serious debt by the time they've finished uni.

Australian financial institutions rarely however energise their brands to deal with this segment of the market. For the most part their branding doesn't take into account the unique needs of this generation, and beyond needs, things that might inspire them. Gen Y are set to be the parents of their next generation, and financial institutions need to begin those relationships sooner rather than later.
Here are just two basic tips to follow to build a relationship with Gen Y.

Don't Ignore Their Parents
A younger audience can be won through their parents. Unlike Gen X, Gen Y tends to place greater emphasis on their parents advice about financial matters. Furthermore, most kids have their first bank accounts created for them by their parents, and that account and bank can stay with them for decades. Essentially, if you want the patronage of someone in their teens and twenties, you need to begin the relationship with their parents a decade earlier.

Don't Ignore Them
Have you identified this generational bracket as an important element in your current and future strategy? If you have on paper then make sure that your brand is aligned with front-line actions. If you're making genuine efforts to reach out to Gen Y, then delivery channels need to follow through. This means welcoming them in to your branches and offices, building one on one relationships and taking them seriously. When young people are listened to and treated as though they were important, they remember it for a very long time. Ensure your delivery channels are following through and managers know what to do when they walk in through the door of a local branch or office.

Generation Z
Maybe you've missed the opportunity to extend your brand out to Gen Y. Well it's still not too late to reach out to the next generation. While todays' parents are Gen X, it will soon be Gen Y serving as the parents of tomorrow, and reaching out to them now as young parents is the best way to build a relationship with Gen Z.